Cilantro chimichurri is a delicious fresh herb condiment for meat or fish. Make this recipe to add refreshing flavor to your favorite foods.
Some may call this fresh herb condiment Argentina’s very own pesto recipe of sorts. All I know is I love this cilantro sauce on steak and other grilled meats!
If you ask me, some things are made better with a fresh condiment or dipping sauce, especially condiments made with plenty of fresh herbs. Things like pico de gallo, pesto, an authentic tzatziki recipe and of course, chimichurri!
Cilantro Chimichurri Ingredients
This authentic Argentinian chimichurri is made with:
- fresh parsley
- fresh oregano
- garlic cloves
- scallion (green onion)
- red chili pepper
- red wine vinegar
- good quality extra virgin olive oil
I use one additional ingredient in my recipe; fresh lemon juice, for a bit of extra acidity. I think it helps bring out the flavor of the herbs.
There are plenty of recipes that call for fresh herbs where you can easily substitute dried/ground herbs instead. Unfortunately, this isn’t one of those recipes. Cilantro chimichurri is all about the bright flavor of the fresh herbs, so using dried simply won’t work.
If you’d like to bump up the spicy heat more, swap out the fresno chili for a serrano chili.
Using a Food Processor
I chopped the ingredients by hand, but by all means use a food processor if you have one! Taking the time to chop the ingredients by hand keeps the texture a little more chunky.
If you choose to use a food processor, do NOT process the chile pepper! You’ll want to chop it with a knife and add it after the other ingredients are processed. This is because processing it with the fresh herbs will turn the sauce an unappetizing brown color.
You’ll thank me. We eat with our eyes and this is so fresh and beautiful looking… it’s the little things. 🙂
Uses for a Chimichurri Recipe
This fresh herb condiment is fantastic on top of a steak, especially a thin cut of beef like flank, skirt, or flap steak. It’s also delicious as a sauce on carne asada tacos, a tostada, or grilled pork tenderloin.
Cilantro chimichurri has a fresh flavor that brightens the palette. Since it is made with fresh cilantro and parsley, it is very refreshing, with a punch of flavor from garlic, and a slight tanginess from red vinegar.
If kept refrigerated in an airtight container, a fresh herb condiment like this one will stay tasty for 3 to 4 days.
Other Homemade Condiments
This post, originally published on Kevin Is Cooking November 11, 2013, was updated with new content on June 1, 2021.
- 1/2 cup flat leaf parsley finely chopped
- 1/2 cup cilantro finely chopped
- 2 tbsp fresh oregano finely chopped
- 5 cloves garlic minced
- 2 green onions finely diced (green and white parts)
- 1 Fresno chili pepper or red jalapeno, seeds removed and finely diced
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp lemon juice fresh
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
By Hand method:
- Remove and discard stems from parsley, cilantro and oregano. Finely chop all herbs and place into a bowl.
- Remove and discard ends of green onion, then finely slice the onion using both white and green parts. Add to bowl with fresh herbs.
- With the side of your knife, smash each garlic clove and then use knife to finely mince garlic. Add to bowl with herbs and onion.
- Remove seeds and stem from chile pepper and slice into thin strips. Turn pepper crosswise and finely mince, then add to bowl with other ingredients.
- Add vinegar, lemon juice, seasonings and olive oil to same bowl. Stir to combine and let sit at room temperature for at least an hour prior to using or cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Food Processor method:
- Using a food processor, combine parsley, cilantro, oregano, garlic and green onions in a food processor and pulse several times to chop fine. Carefully scrape out of processor and place in a bowl.
- Remove seeds and stem from chile pepper and slice into thin strips. Turn crosswise and finely mince, then add to bowl with other ingredients.
- Add vinegar, lemon juice, seasonings and olive oil to bowl. Stir to combine and let sit at room temperature for at least an hour prior to using or cover and refrigerate.
- Will keep up to 3 days if refrigerated in a sealed container.
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.