Leftover Cilantro? Quick Ways to Use It Before it Goes Bad

updated May 13, 2022
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Recipes so rarely call for more than a handful of cilantro, which means we frequently have a half-used bunch slowly turning to brown mush in our refrigerator. Why? There are so many things you can do with a little cilantro, including that lovely cocktail above.

It’s a shame to let cilantro go to waste; it can perk up an ordinary dish—even one that’s not typically Latin American or Indian—so beautifully.

Here are seven ways to use a few snips.

Cocktails. We love the idea of herbs in cocktails, and this Kachumber Cooler, above, has muddled cilantro and cucumber with gin.

Scrambled eggs. Cilantro is an easy way to add some color and flavor.

Potato salad. This Warm Potato Salad with Cilantro and Toasted Cumin is a delicious deviation from the classics.

Chutney. A chutney or pesto is a great way to preserve a big bunch of cilantro for future use. This Cilantro Mint Chutney would be good on so many things (or in scrambled eggs).

A simple lunch. The Can O Beans Lunch (avocado, black beans) is elevated with the addition of fresh herbs, and this is true of so many no-frills dishes. Add some cilantro to a piece of bread slathered in cream cheese (or avocado) and you’ve got a much more interesting meal.

Slaw. We love, love, love this Crunchy Peanut Slaw. The cilantro is almost as important as the cabbage, in our opinion.

Green salad. Toss some cilantro in with your lettuce for an extra pop of flavor.

How do you use up leftover cilantro?

Related: Recipe Roundup: Guacamole

(Image: Nora Maynard)