19 Recipes for Cilantro Lovers
According to Jamie Boudreau, a good aperitif often hints at the meal that will follow. This light, summery cilantro-spiked drink—which Boudreau likes to mix with a eucalyptus-infused simple syrup—would be a great lead-up to Mexican food.
Reposado tequila, pear nectar, simple syrup, fresh lime and lemon juice, and chopped cilantro come together in this refreshing margarita.
Pico De Gallo
This pico de gallo is loaded with fresh cilantro, and we love serving it with grilled steak tacos.
Warm Flank Steak Salad with Mint and Cilantro
Thai cooks typically serve meat already sliced so it's easier to eat. Here, Andy Ricker tosses pieces of soy-marinated flank steak with fresh mint, cilantro and roasted rice powder. The powder, a thickener in Thai curries, adds a fun crunch but is optional.
Thai Grilled Chicken with Cilantro Dipping Sauce
Mussels with Crème Fraîche, Jalapeños and Cilantro
Grace Parisi creates an amazing alternative to classic mussels in white wine, with clam broth, jalapeños and cilantro.
Rick Bayless of Chicago's Frontera Grill keeps extra cilantro from going to waste by using it in this pesto, which can stay in the fridge for two months. Try it on fish or add a little to soup.
Grilled Salmon with Cilantro-Pecan Pesto
At La Biznaga, Fernando López Velarde creates untraditional dishes that nod to local flavors. Here, for instance, he grills salmon until the fish is crackling-crisp, then tops it with a wonderfully bright pesto he makes with cilantro—a staple of Mexican cuisine—in place of the usual basil.
Hearts of Palm Salad with Cilantro Vinaigrette
The citrusy dressing on this Caribbean-inspired hearts of palm salad is marvelously dense with fresh cilantro, shallots, lemon juice and honey. The oranges here release juice as they sit, so be sure to serve the salad right after you make it.
Cilantro-Flecked Corn Fritters with Chile-Mint Sauce
These delicate and slightly sweet fritters from Devi Garh palace-hotel are deliciously flecked with cilantro leaves and held together simply by the starch in the corn. A dusting of flour just before they're pan-fried gives them a light, crisp crust. For a richer flavor, cook the fritters in unsalted butter instead of vegetable oil.
Meat-Stuffed Poblanos with Cilantro-Lime Sauce
A tangy cilantro-lime sauce brings brightness to rich stuffed peppers.
Soba Noodles with Grilled Shrimp and Cilantro
Garlicky, spicy and bright with lime, this noodle dish is both warming and energizing, according to Thai tradition. Just don't skimp on the lime wedges or cilantro: "The sour juice protects the respiratory system in the early spring," Su-Mei Yu says, "and cilantro helps when you're congested."
Roasted Butternut Squash with Cilantro Cream
Two complementary sauces season this easy roasted butternut squash: a spicy tomato sauce with hot paprika and cinnamon, and an equally cooling, cilantro-loaded sour cream.
Cilantro Salad with Shallots and Shrimp
Built on a lump of leftover rice, Amy Thielen says this dish comes together as quickly as a fire built in a wood stove. “Chili paste for kindling, onions and peanuts stacked crosswise to burn, and tons of quick-fire cilantro on top. The lime juice is like lighter fluid here, setting the whole thing aflame—a false igniter that at the end of the winter I’m not averse to using.”
Roast Chicken with Cilantro-Mint Chutney
Roast chicken, whole or separated into pieces, benefits brilliantly from chutney-based marinades. You make the chutney and reserve half as your dipping sauce, while the other half gets folded into creamy, tangy yogurt to make a flavorful marinade for the chicken.
Cold Roasted Leg of Lamb with Cilantro-Jalapeño Yogurt
Cold slices of lamb are a fail-safe dinner party main. A tangy yogurt sauce laced with lime and cilantro takes it to the next level.
Mushroom Frankies with Cilantro Chutney
Frankies, a Mumbai-style wrap created during the British rule of India, involve griddling a roti with a little eggwash to create a thicker bread ideal for holding a rich, saucy filling. At Pondicheri in New York City, chef Anita Jaisinghani swaps the typical chicken tikka masala version for this equally satisfying vegetarian wrap with mushrooms, sweet potato and a bright cilantro chutney.
Beer Bread with Jalapeño, Cilantro and Queso Fresco
With jalapeños, cilantro, queso fresco and a Mexican amber ale like Dos Equis, this savory beer bread would be delicious alongside a bowl of chili or black bean soup. Use a second jalapeño for a spicier bread or a Mexican lager like Tecate for a milder beer flavor.
Skillet Corn and Peppers with Cilantro-Lime Mayo
After seeing Bobby Flay slather corn on the cob with lime butter before grilling on a cooking show, Hopkins came up with this skillet variation using kernels. To reflect the Central American influence on Southern cuisine, Hopkins adds sweet-hot Padrón peppers, but you can substitute jalapeños.