Quick And Easy Cilantro Chimichurri Recipe

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With its simple yet robust flavors, this Cilantro Chimichurri sauce is a versatile sauce can be used in many different ways. It’s a perfect combination for grilled meats or veggies, it can quickly dress up a salad or infuse an extra burst of flavor into marinades. However you choose to use it, this vibrant and zesty condiment is a must on your table.

Close up of a bowl of bright green chimichurri being stirred with a white spoon.Pin

What Makes This Recipe So Good?

The joy of this beautiful bright green sauce, or any herb sauces, is that they are both delicious and brimming with nutrients. Herbs are not given anywhere near enough praise for the nourishing boost they give our meals.

This super easy chimichurri sauce recipe boasts a range of health benefits attributed to its key ingredients. Cilantro and parsley are both rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, that are linked to numerous health-promoting effects, such as reduced inflammation, improved digestion, and aiding the liver in its detoxification processes. Then there’s the garlic, that possesses antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and heart-health benefits with thanks to its active compound allicin. The extra virgin olive oil is another top ingredient here and is rich in nutrients associated with a reduced risk of heart disease and inflammation in addition to improving cholesterol levels and improving overall health and well-being.

Traditional Chimichurri Sauce

A traditional Argentinian chimichurri does not include cilantro. The classic recipe is made with parsley, fresh garlic, oregano, oil, vinegar and chili. The origins of chimichurri are, as with many dishes in our history, not entirely known. However, according to one historian and author, Daniel Balmaceda, the word “chimichurri” comes from the Quechua, an Indigenous group who have lived in northern Argentina long before Europeans arrived. Whatever its origins, chimichurri has long been associated with Argentinan cuisine and there is rarely a time it’s not found on the table.

Ingredients – What You’ll Need To Make Chimichurri

Cilantro chimichurri is all about lots of fresh and simple ingredients. If however, you’re not much of a cilantro/coriander lover Italian parsley can be used in it’s place. This is the traditional way too, as parsley is the herb of choice in an authentic Argentinian chimichurri.

All the ingredients needed to make chimichurri are laid out across a table in small bowls.Pin
  • Fresh cilantro – the main ingredient that adds a vibrant, citrusy flavor and the classic bright green colour.
  • Fresh parsley – contributes an added herbaceous taste that complements the cilantro, providing additional depth and complexity to the sauce.
  • Red chili flakes – introduce a very subtle heat and spiciness without being overwhelming.
  • Red onion – adds a mild sweetness with a little peppery spice.
  • Dried oregano – offers earthy, aromatic notes that complement the freshness of the herbs.
  • Garlic cloves – bring pungency and savory notes to the chimichurri, providing a bold and aromatic base along with the herbs.
  • Extra virgin olive oil – provides a rich, smooth texture to the sauce, while also adding fruity and peppery undertones.
  • Apple cider vinegar – helps balance the richness of the olive oil while adding a tangy acidity that brightens the flavor overall.
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper – bring balance to the overall taste profile.

Italian parsley is the best choice for this recipe, as I’ve found the curly variety is far too coarse. The apple cider vinegar can be substituted for a variety of others to provide slightly different tastes to each batch. See the substitutions and variations section for more on that.

How To Make Cilantro Chimichurri Sauce

This simple sauce recipe can be made right before it’s needed but is at its best made a few days ahead, which gives the flavors have had plenty of time to meld together. 

  1. Add fresh herbs, vinegar, oregano, chilli, garlic, salt and pepper to the food processor. Whizz for a few seconds or until well chopped.
  2. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then turn the food processor onto low and slowly drizzle in the olive oil. Leave to blend for about one minute.
  3. Serve straight away with grilled meats or veg. Or, store in a jar in the fridge.

Love growing your own herbs? Cilantro/coriander and Italian parsley are two excellent additions. They grow easily, and in abundance so you’ll have a herb garden to table sauce every couple of weeks! They’re happy in pots too, which is great for all of us balcony gardeners.

A small bowl of chimichurri sauce is on a grey tabletop with purple flowers beside it, a spoon and more cilantro below.Pin

Substitutions And Variations

Apple cider vinegar can be substituted with red wine vinegar if preferred. White wine vinegar would also work and which you choose will come down to personal preference.

Fresh red chili peppers can be used in place of dried chilli flakes however, choose one that won’t overpower the other ingredients. Especially the herbs.

For an extra flavor boost add a tablespoon of fresh lime juice or lemon juice.

Hints And Tips For Success With This Recipe

Use good quality fresh ingredients for this recipe to ensure it has that vibrant, herbaceous taste its known for.

Chimichurri is best served at room temperature so if it’s been chilled, let it sit on the bench for 10-15 mins before adding it to your table.

You can adjust the consistency of the sauce by adding more or less olive oil according to your preference. I’ve used ¾ of a cup, but this amount of herbs could take up to one cup of oil.

A jar of cilantro chimichurri is sat on a table. A white hand has scooped some up in a spoon seen above the top of the jar.Pin

Storing/Freezing/Make Ahead

Store any leftover chimichurri sauce in an airtight container or mason jar in the fridge.

Chimichurri can be frozen for two or three months without the flavor being affected. After that it will start to taste watery so be sure to use it up. One of the best ways to freeze it is in an ice cube tray! Pour the chimichurri into a clean ice cube tray and freeze. When you’re ready to use it – remove as many cubes as you need and let them thaw in the fridge overnight then let it come to room temperature for 10-15 minutes before using.

This can absolutely be made ahead of time and the taste will only improve. Let it sit out of the fridge for 10-15 minutes before serving so it can get to room temp – when it’s at its best.


What can I substitute for cilantro in chimichurri?

Parsley is the best substitution for cilantro in this recipe. It will change the taste profile but will still be delicious.

Is cilantro chimichurri sauce spicy?

The level of spice can be adjusted by increasing or decreasing the amount of chilli you add to the sauce. It can also be omitted entirely.

Want More Ideas For Sauces? Take A Look At These!

If you try this recipe, I’d love to know. Leave a comment, rate it, and remember to tag @wholenaturalkitchen in your pics or reels on Instagram, Facebook or TikTok!

A jar of chimichurri sauce is on a grey table. A hand is holding a teaspoon of the sauce just above it.Pin

Quick And Easy Cilantro Chimichurri

A delicious, mildly spiced sauce that is great to drizzle over meals. It's also great to liven up salads and used as a marinade.
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Course: Sauces
Cuisine: Argentinian
Keyword: Herbs, Sauce
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 0 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 20 people
Calories: 74kcal


  • Food processor


  • 1.5 cups cilantro (coriander)
  • ½ cup Italian parsley
  • 2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes (or ½ – 1red chilli)
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • A few good grinds of black pepper
  • ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil


  • Add the fresh herbs, vinegar, oregano, garlic, chilli, salt and pepper to a food processor and whizz until well chopped. This should only take a few seconds.
  • Scrape down the sides of the blender then put it on a medium speed and slowly add in the olive oil. Leave to blend for about one minute.
  • Pour into a jar and store in the fridge. Remove from the fridge 10-15 minutes before using it, as chimichurri is best at room temperature.



This will store in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for 2-3 months.
The consistency of the sauce can be adjusted by adding more or less olive oil according to your preference. I’ve used ¾ of a cup, but this amount of herbs could take up to one cup of oil.


Serving: 1Tbsp | Calories: 74kcal | Carbohydrates: 0.4g | Protein: 0.1g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Sodium: 120mg | Potassium: 21mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 0.05g | Vitamin A: 240IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 0.3mg

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  1. 5 stars
    Love chimichurri, and your version looks delicious! Interesting, I didn’t know there was a red kind. Checking out your herb garden post too!

  2. 5 stars
    So zingy looking and delicious! I’ve always loved chimichurrri and never knew how to make it so this is perfect thank you!

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