15 Ways to Use Up a Bunch of Cilantro

September  2, 2015


Lovers of cilantro, take note.

Once upon a time, in 2012, I returned home from my first year of college and got a summer job working at a fast food burrito chain. So began my education in the enormous passions of teams Pro-Cilantro and Anti-Cilantro. They are equally ardent, and the herb is one of extremes: Some customers would ask for extra cilantro to be added to their burritos; some would immediately recoil at the sight of the leaves; it's either The Best Herb or it tastes like feet.

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If you're a staunch member of Team Anti-Cilantro, let me direct you to recipes that will help you use up your basil. But if you're Team Pro—well, you've come to the right place. Here are 15 ways to put cilantro in every meal:

Cilantro Coconut Chutney by A Brown Table



Roasted Cauliflower with Cumin and Cilantro by Emily | Truefood



Chilaquiles Verdes by lisina



Fish with Green Masala and Coconut Wrapped in Banana Leaves by Sumayya Usmani



Kutabi, Azerbaijani Savory Panckes Filled with Greens and Herbs by Kukla

Savory pancakes


Anna Thomas' Green Soup by Genius Recipes



Cooked Green Salsa (Salsa Verde) by Pati Jinich



Corn Soup with Tofu Larb by Colleen Rose

Corn soup 


Sweet Potato and Cilantro Quesadilla with Fried Egg and Cumin Oil by CarolineWright



Green Goddess Chicken Sandwiches by foxeslovelemons



Summer Vegetable and Glass Noodle Salad by CarolineWright



Fried Greens Meatlessballs by Alexandra Stafford

Vegetarian meatballs


Seared Sea Scallops with Gingered Pea Purée and Cilantro Gremolata by TasteFood



Hello Summer Cocktail by Chase the Flavors



José Pizarro's Salt-Crusted Potatoes with Cilantro Mojo by Genius Recipes


Which team are you on? What's your best way to use up a bunch of cilantro?

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See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Chef Devaux
    Chef Devaux
  • orinoco womble
    orinoco womble
  • Norman Hajjar
    Norman Hajjar
Writing and cooking in Brooklyn.


Chef D. November 27, 2015
Cilantro is hands down the best herb :D
orinoco W. September 3, 2015
I used to hate cilantro--to me it tasted soapy, with an overtone of the way a cat litter box smells when it needs cleaning! I discovered that cilantro needs to be really fresh to be good--not something sitting around in the vegetable market that they bought last week and didn't sell. My favourite use for cilantro is in curries, particularly fish curry! Hari chutney (green chutney) is also delicious and so easy to make! Throw a bunch of cilantro, the juice of one lemon, salt, cumin and a couple of fresh chilis in your food processor with a good dollop of olive oil and a pinch of sugar; blitz until smooth. Store in the fridge in a tightly-covered glass jar. Serve with...well, everything, really! ;) Green chutney is about as versatile as hummus! Top a baked potato with hummus and green chutney--bliss!
Norman H. May 15, 2018
There is a genetic reason that cilantro tastes like soap to some tasters. It's baked into DNA. About 4-14% of humans have the problem. See:
orinoco W. May 16, 2018
So somehow my DNA altered itself between the first time I tried it and a couple of years later, is that what you're saying?