How to Store Cilantro | Fridge - Freeze - Dry

Cilantro is a staple herb in Mexican, Southwest, and Tex-Mex cuisine, present in salsas, guacamole, soups, and many more recipes.
How to Store Cilantro

What is Cilantro?

Cilantro is the leaves and stems of the coriander plant, also known as Chinese Parsley. 

Cilantro is the most widely used, aromatic, leafy herb in the world.

Cilantro is a dominant ingredient in cuisines around the globe including Indian, Chinese, Mexican, and Mediterranean.

How to Use Cilantro :

  • Great for salads, burritos, and tacos

I hate wasting cilantro, I love using it in my Mexican stews, salsas, tacos...almost everything.  Finding mushy cilantro in my fridge, just as I was craving pico de gallo and chips...Yikes! Well, I found some great tips on Cilantro storage and tried different methods. 

I use three different methods for Cilantro storage:

  • Refrigerator
  • Freezing
  • Drying

  • How to Store Cilantro in the Refrigerator:

    How To Store Cilantro

    Refrigerator: Place cilantro in a glass of water (1/2 cup of water) and cover it loosely with a plastic storage bag. Place the stem ends of the herbs into the water in the jar, I use a  large mason jar. 

    How long can you keep Cilantro in the refrigerator?

    You can keep fresh cilantro ready to use in your refrigerator for about two weeks or longer and change the water every few days. Snip off what you need from the cilantro bunch and recover the jar.

    Can I  freeze Cilantro for longer storage? 

    Yup! Here are 2 ways to freeze Cilantro:

    • Freeze cilantro sprigs in freezer bags: To freeze, rinse and drain whole sprigs, then pat dry with paper towels. Place a few sprigs at a time into small plastic freezer bags and freeze. Date and label bags.
    • Cilantro/Olive oil puree cubes:  Place cilantro and olive oil (adjust oil as needed) in a blender...puree, then place in an ice cube tray. Freeze overnight, then transfer cubes to a large freezer bag. Use cubes as needed. Date and label bag.
    Cilantro will last in the freezer for up to six months for sprigs and cubes.

    Tip: Squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing the bag

    How to dry Cilantro: Three easy ways to dry Cilantro

    Oven Drying:
    •  Wash cilantro thoroughly from any dirt or debris.
    • Set your oven to 250°F, and prepare cilantro on the baking dish.
    • Coat the baking sheet with baking spray,
    • Strip leaves off the stem and place on a sprayed baking sheet.
    • Spread leaves out evenly on the baking sheet in a single layer. 
    • Let the leaves dry out in the oven for 20-30 minutes. 
    • Remove the baking sheet from the oven, and allowed it to cool. Scrape leaves from the baking sheet.
    • Store the dried cilantro leaves in an airtight container. 
    • Dried cilantro can be stored for up to 3 years in a sealed, airtight container.

      Hang Drying:
    • After you pat the cilantro dry, gather the bunch together and use a piece of string or twine to tie the ends together securely so they can be hung to dry. 
    • Tie a knot about 1 inch away from the end of the bunch so the stems will stay bound together as the plant dries. The knot needs to be tight enough to hold the bunch even after the stems shrink during the drying process

      It is optional to tie a brown paper bag around the herbs to catch any cilantro leaves that may dry and fall off as it dries.