Perhaps one of the most versatile herbs around the world, coriander is favored for its bold, strong flavor. It is often used in
Asian dishes because of its vibrant flavor profile, and can be used in a variety of sauces and salads to give your food that kick it’s missing.
However, coriander isn’t to everyone’s taste. Some people may even be allergic to coriander, which means they need to avoid it altogether and find a suitable alternative to use instead.
Perhaps you actually love coriander, but have run out of this delicious herb from your pantry. So you will need to find a suitable alternative that won’t compromise the flavor of the dishes that you are trying to prepare.
Today, we’re going to look at the best alternatives for coriander so that you can still enjoy those bold flavors of your favorite dishes. Or perhaps you’ll find a milder alternative that you don’t find as off putting as the pungent coriander itself.
The Best Alternatives For Coriander
Below, we have listed the best alternatives for coriander in culinary uses. Your first herb or spice of choice is likely to be cumin, because of the similar flavor profile to coriander.
However, you may be surprised to find a few herbs and spices on this list that you hadn’t considered.
All of the 12 herbs and spices that we have mentioned in more detail below will be perfect for use as a substitute for coriander.
The vast majority of the herbs and spices that we have listed below can be substituted in the exact same quantities. Or if you want to highlight a particular flavor, you can adjust the amount of herb that you substitute accordingly.
Arguably the most used alternative for coriander is of course dried cumin seeds. Cumin is a herb that you are more likely to have in your pantry or store cupboard because it is one of the more widely available alternatives on our list.
This is a versatile herb that can be used in soups, stews, or even to season your favorite meats ready for the barbecue.
Cumin is a fragrant, rich herb that uses the dried seeds of the herb Cuminum cyminum. It is a close relative of the herb parsley. It is important to note that this won’t be an exact match in terms of flavor.
It mostly resembles the earthy notes of coriander with a slightly spicy, nutty flavor. You can use equal parts cumin in place of coriander in your recipes.
Another fantastic choice for a coriander substitution is of course curried powder. Coriander is used in several different curry recipes because of its bold, spicy taste.
So this naturally makes curried powder a great alternative. In fact, many curry powders will actually have ground coriander as an ingredient.
An important thing to note about curried powder is that because it also features other spices, it will give your dish a much bolder flavor than if you opted for coriander on its own.
The most used spices in curry powder tend to be chili, ginger, and turmeric, but ingredients can vary depending on the product.
If you’re making marinades or curries, this will be the perfect substitution. It can sometimes make your dishes taste on the sweeter side, so you may wish to use less curry powder than the amount of coriander the recipe calls for.
Garam Masala Spice Mix
When you think of coriander substitutes, garam masala spice mix might not be the first alternative to spring to your mind.
Similar to curry powder, garam masala is actually a mix of several different spices, so can make a great addition to your recipe in place of coriander.
Coriander is one of the many herbs that feature in garam masala. Included in garam masala are coriander, cumin, turmeric, cloves, peppercorns, and several other spices.
The specific blend can vary depending on the recipe. You can also make your own garam masala depending on the spices that you have available in your pantry.
If you like your herbs and spices on the spicier end of the spectrum, then garam masala will be the perfect alternative to coriander.
This makes it a great fit for curries, soups, and stews. It is a particular favorite in Indian and South Asian dishes. Because it can be so spicy, you may wish to add slightly less garam masala than the coriander that is needed.
If you’re looking for a coriander substitute that can be used in equal measures, then you should opt for Persian cumin, also known as caraway or meridian fennel.
This won’t alter the flavor of your dishes too much if you do use the same measurements as you would coriander.
You’ll also notice that the taste of Persian cumin or caraway is incredibly similar to that of coriander. Persian cumin comes either as a ground powder or as seeds.
Both of these versions of caraway will work well as a substitute for coriander. It can also be used in sweeter dishes like desserts.
Fresh Or Dried Parsley
Perhaps one of the easiest substitutions for coriander is fresh or dried parsley. This is a widely available herb that you are likely to have in your pantry if you have run out of coriander.
It will also be widely available at your local grocery store. You can use equal parts parsley as you would coriander in your recipe.
The taste of your parsley will differ depending on whether you opt for the fresh or dried variant. It will also taste a bit different to coriander, with more earthy tones than spice.
You can use parsley as a substitute for coriander in several different dishes, including salads, stews, soups, and stir fries.
Fresh Or Dried Basil
Another popular herb that will make an excellent alternative to coriander is basil. What’s really great about this herb is that you can use both its fresh and dried versions as a substitution.
However, you will need to treat it differently to coriander if you opt for the fresh version.
This is because fresh basil wilts easily, so you will need to wait until you have almost finished cooking before you can add the fresh basil leaves to your dish.
The ideal time frame will be within the last 2 minutes of cooking.
Dried basil can be added to your dish at the same time the recipe asks for coriander. You can also use equal parts basil in place of coriander.
Looking to add an Italian flair to your dishes? Then the herb you should opt for as an alternative to coriander should be dried oregano.
This is an equally pungent herb that features a remarkably strong earthy flavor. If you like your flavors bold, then oregano should be your substitution of choice.
If you want that strong flavor to come through in your dishes, you can substitute equal parts oregano for coriander. If you want a more subtle flavor, then try adding a smaller amount of oregano in place of coriander.
This is a herb that can be used in a variety of dishes, including both hot and cold recipes. You will notice that oregano is much more potent in colder dishes that don’t require cooking.
Perhaps that best substitute for coriander is fresh cilantro. This is because cilantro is the fresh, leafy part of the coriander plant. It has a strong flavor and will give your dishes an interesting citrus twist.
However, it will be worth noting that it won’t work with every dish that requires dried or ground coriander.
Cilantro will be the best replacement for coriander in cold dishes and salads. Its fresh, leafy greenery will bring that extra pizzazz to your dish so that you still get the great coriander taste that you’re after.
You could even use dried cilantro in your cooking if you would prefer, and this will be the better alternative for hot dishes.
In terms of the amount you need to use, it will be best to add a small amount of cilantro to your dish then taste test it. If you think it needs more cilantro, you can then add a little bit extra at a time.
Fresh Or Dried Dill
One of the more unusual substitutions for coriander is of course dill. This herb has a very different flavor profile, but it will make an excellent alternative to coriander in a pinch.
The great thing about dill is that you can use both the dried and fresh variants.
Dill has a completely different flavor profile to coriander, with its sweeter, earthy notes being more prevalent. So if you’re not a fan of the spiciness of coriander dill will be the perfect alternative to opt for.
Using dried or fresh dill will give your dish a fresher flavor. It will work best if you use it for omelettes, soups, or salads.
If bold flavors is your jam, then French tarragon should be your substitution of choice for both coriander and cilantro.
This is a potent herb that can sometimes be harder to find in your grocery store than coriander, but if you can get your hands on it, it will more than make it worth your while.
This is a strong, earthy herb with a sweet flavor. It has a particular reputation for pairing well with chicken dishes, but you can use it in pasta dishes, cooked dishes, and for salads. You can use equal parts French tarragon in place of coriander.
One of the simpler alternatives for coriander is of course that jar of mixed herbs that you use in other dishes. This often will have dried coriander in it as well.
However, if you don’t have a jar of mixed herbs to hand, you can create your very own using some of the substitutions we’ve mentioned above.
Mix together dried oregano, dried parsley, French tarragon, and dill to create a mixed herbs combo that will be suitable for replacing equal amounts of coriander.
Another versatile herb that you can opt for as an alternative to coriander is ground turmeric.
This is a herb that looks quite different to coriander, but packs a flavorful punch. It also has a whole wealth of health benefits.
Ground turmeric can be used as an alternative to coriander in soups, stir fries, omelettes, and stews. It will be worth noting that turmeric will give your food a yellowish hue because of its bold pigments.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Cumin And Coriander The Same Thing?
No, cumin and coriander are not the same thing. They have similar flavor profiles, and can be substituted for one another, but these are two completely different herbs.
Coriander has a sweeter flavor profile than cumin, whereas cumin has nuttier notes and can be more spicy than coriander.
What Can I Use If I Don’t Have Coriander?
There are several different herbs that you can use in place of coriander. Some of these include cilantro, cumin, curry powder, garam masala, caraway seeds, parsley, dill, basil, oregano, French tarragon, mixed herbs, or ground turmeric.
Can Parsley Be Substituted For Coriander?
Yes, parsley can be substituted for coriander. You can use both dried and fresh parsley depending on the type of dish that you are making.
What Is The Same As Coriander?
Cilantro is the same as coriander. This is the name used to describe the leafy parts of the coriander plant.
So there you have it! You now know a whopping 12 alternative herbs or herb mixes that you can use in place of coriander in your recipes.
So if you have an allergy to coriander, or simply don’t like the flavor, you will now have a much better idea of which herbs you can use to substitute this spice.