How to Freeze Cilantro

Can you freeze cilantro? You sure can! Learn how to preserve this fresh herb right in your freezer.

Whether you buy a giant bunch at the store or are trimming the last of your herb garden, sometimes you’re left with more fresh cilantro than you can use. So what do you do with the extras? Can you freeze cilantro for later? The good news is that you absolutely can!

How to Freeze Cilantro at Home

Freezing cilantro is a great way to preserve its fresh, bright flavor. There are two simple methods for stashing this leafy herb in the freezer.

Method 1: Freeze in Zip-Top Bags

A super simple way to freeze cilantro for later is to stash in a zip-top freezer bag. To do this, wash your cilantro and pat dry with a clean dishtowel. Place the sprigs in resealable bags and toss in the freezer.

Method 2: Freeze Cilantro in Ice Cube Trays

You can also preserve pre-portioned amounts of cilantro using ice cube trays.

To do this, finely chop the fresh cilantro (use the stems, too—they have lots of flavor). Press it into an ice cube tray, top with a splash of water and freeze.

If all that chopping isn’t for you, toss the cilantro into a food processor and blitz until the herbs are finely chopped. Add in a splash of water or oil to make a paste, then portion out into the ice cube trays.

When the cubes are frozen solid, you can remove from the tray and store in a zip-top freezer bag or airtight container.

Up next: Read our complete guide to freezing food.

How to Use Frozen Cilantro

Making a sauce, soup or roast? You can chop or toss in a cube of frozen cilantro and cook as normal.

However, if the recipe calls for the fresh herb—think salsas or garnishes—frozen cilantro won’t give you the exact texture or appearance as truly fresh stuff.

So if you’re making guac, buy a new bunch. If you’re using the cilantro in a cozy soup or another cooked dish, grab what you’ve frozen.

Other Ways to Preserve Cilantro

Not ready to freeze? You can keep cilantro fresh in your fridge by popping bunches in a glass of water or in a special herb keeper.

You can also dry your own herbs. Tie bunches of cilantro together at the stems and hang them upside down and away from direct sunlight. When dry, chop and stash in jars.

Use Fresh Cilantro in These Recipes
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Lisa Kaminski
Lisa is a former Taste of Home editor and passionate baker. During her tenure, she poured her love of all things sweet (and sometimes savory) into Bakeable, Taste of Home's baking club. Lisa also dedicated her career here to finding and testing the best ingredients, kitchen gear and home products for our Test Kitchen-Preferred program. At home, you'll find her working on embroidery and other crafts.