The only Chimichurri recipe you’ll ever need! It’s incredibly vibrant and jam packed with fresh flavor. It’s easy to make and it’s the best upgrade to meat and poultry. One of my go-to recipes and for good reason, it will always leave you craving more!
What is Chimichurri Sauce?
Chimichurri is a condiment or marinade similar to pesto but rather it’s parsley and vinegar based. It’s a common dish that you’ll find in South American and Central American countries such as Argentina and Mexico.
My husband lived in Argentina for two years before we were married so he introduced me to a few of the classics that I instantly fell in love with. Among there were breaded Milanesa, flakey beef and olive filled Empanadas, Alfajores cookies layered with sweet dulce de leche, and lively homemade Chimichurri sauce (which he loves on Choripan).
Of course I was smitten after once taste of that refreshing sauce and I’ve been making it regularly ever since. My family loves it and it’s a simple way to upgrade an otherwise insipid chicken or steak dinner.
Plus it’s a healthy recipe jam packed with fresh herbs and it has no added added sugars (unlike bbq sauces and others).
Is This Recipe Authentic?
Authentic Argentine Chimichurri is made with parsley and oregano, but no cilantro. I prefer the flavor of the added cilantro but to make it authentic you can omit the cilantro and replace with more parsley. The region my husband lived in also never served spicy food (even black pepper) so depending on the area red pepper flakes may not be authentic.
Other additions I added for more flavor were some red onion and a bit of lemon in place of some of the red wine vinegar. They’re the perfect finishing touches!
What Ingredients go into Chimichurri?
- Fresh parsley, cilantro and oregano – this trio of herbs makes this incredibly flavorful!
- Red onion – mince these up itty bitty if going the method by hand.
- Garlic – use fresh garlic for the most flavor.
- Red wine vinegar – if you don’t have red wine vinegar on hand white wine vinegar could be substituted.
- Lemon juice – use fresh lemon juice for best flavor.
- Salt – kosher salt, table salt or sea salt works great.
- Red pepper flakes – if you don’t like spicy food just omit this, if you love spicy food add more to taste.
- Olive oil – I like to use a blend of half extra virgin olive oil and half regular olive oil for a more mild oil flavor but feel free to use either or.
How do You Make Chimichurri?
Mix and Chop by Hand Method:
- Finely chop parsley, cilantro, oregano. Add to a mixing bowl along with all remaining ingredients. Stir well to blend.
Food Processor Method:
- If using a food processor no need to pre-chop herbs and you’ll only need to roughly chop onion and garlic.
- Add red onion, garlic, red wine vinegar, lemon juice and salt to a food processor.
- Pulse, stopping and scraping down sides occasionally until finely minced.
- Add in parsley, cilantro, oregano and red pepper flakes then pour in olive oil while pulsing several times until herb leaves are finely minced (they should have some body and texture).
Can I Use Dried Oregano?
Fresh oregano does give the best flavor but I don’t always have it on hand so once it a while I’ll use dried oregano and it will work fine. Use 1 tsp dried in place of fresh.
How to Store it and How Long Does it Keep?
Store chimichurri in an airtight container in the refrigerator. It should keep well for about 5 days refrigerated.
Can I Freeze It?
Yes for longer shelf life freeze it for up to 1 month. You can freeze in an ice cube tray for smaller servings if desired (transfer to an airtight container after frozen through. Thaw in refrigerator.
Tips for the Best Chimichurri:
- Use freshest ingredients. Don’t use limp wilting fresh herbs and skip bottled garlic or dried onion.
- If chopping by hand finely chop the herbs so it’s not overly chunky.
- If using a food processor don’t over-process it. It should have some body and texture it shouldn’t be pureed.
- Use good quality olive oil for best flavor.
What Should I Serve it On?
I love chimichurri served over:
Follow Cooking Classy
The only Chimichurri recipe you'll ever need! It's incredibly vibrant and jam packed with fresh flavor. It's easy to make and it's the best upgrade to meat and poultry. One of my go-to recipes and for good reason, it will always leave you craving more! Makes about 1 1/3 cups.
- 1 1/2 cups well packed (42g) fresh parsley*
- 1/2 cup well packed (20g) fresh cilantro
- 1/4 cup (9g) fresh oregano or 1 tsp dried
- 1/4 small red onion or one small shallot
- 3 garlic cloves
- 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp salt, or to taste
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional, more or less to taste)
- 3/4 cup olive oil**
By Hand Method
Finely chop parsley, cilantro, oregano, onion (should have 1/4 cup minced red onion) and garlic (1 Tbsp). Add to a mixing bowl along with all remaining ingredients. Stir to blend.
Food Processor Method
If using a food processor no need to pre-chop herbs and you'll only need to roughly chop onion and garlic. Add red onion, garlic, red wine vinegar, lemon juice and salt to a food processor. Pulse, stopping and scraping down sides occasionally until finely minced.
Add in parsley, cilantro, oregano and red pepper flakes then pour in olive oil while pulsing several times until herb leaves are finely minced (they should have some body and texture).
Spread over meat, poultry, seafood or vegetables or use as a marinade.
- *To make a more authentic Argentinian Chimichurri omit the cilantro and increase parsley by an extra 1/2 cup.
- *With all fresh herbs use mostly leaves and some tender stem.
- **I like to use a blend half extra virgin and half regular olive oil. Either or a blend will work great.
- ***Just use about 1/4 of a small red onion.
- Store in refrigerator about 5 days or freeze for one month.