This chimichurri sauce recipe uses hand-chopped parsley, cilantro and oregano to create a rustic, vibrant condiment that is delicious on nearly everything!
What is Chimichurri?
Chimichurri is an herb-based sauce used as a condiment, usually with grilled meats, or as an ingredient in dishes. I’m not a food historian, so I’m not here to educate you much further than that. If you Google its origins, you’ll get varying answers, but it is prevalent in the cuisines of Argentina, Uruguay and Spain.
Aside from that, I can tell you from personal experience that chimichurri is amazing on just about everything!
What Goes in Chimichurri Sauce?
There are many variations for chimichurri. Some recipes will use only parsley and oregano. Others will use fresh chilies over dried flakes. And then some call for a variety of different acidic components. I’ve tried several recipes over the years and eventually decided to create my own based on the flavors my family enjoys most:
- Red pepper flakes (though, I wouldn’t be mad at fresh chili!)
- Red wine vinegar + lime juice
- Kosher salt
- Extra virgin olive oil
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My Method for Making Chimichurri
Making this recipe is zen for me. I put on some music, plant myself in a stool at the kitchen counter in front of a pile of fresh herbs and go to town plucking leaves off the stems.
Sound tedious? Perhaps, but it’s all about mindset! The music helps — and sometimes a glass of wine!
But…before I start on the herbs, I combine the minced shallot, garlic, red pepper flakes, red wine vinegar, lime juice and a little kosher salt in a bowl. I prefer the flavor of tempered onion, so giving the shallot time to pickle a bit in the acid makes it just right for me.
While all those flavors play together in the bowl, I set to work removing leaves. I pack the parsley and cilantro (separately) in a 1 cup measure to ensure that I’m getting a good amount of herbs and to maintain consistency each time I make it.
Once the herbs are measured, I combine them all on the cutting board and give them a medium-fine chop. You can rough or finely chop the herbs depending on the texture and consistency you want your sauce to have.
Add the herbs to the bowl along with the oil and stir to distribute the ingredients.
Storing Your Sauce
If I’m using it the same day, I simply cover the bowl and leave it on the counter.
Transfer leftover (or pre-made) sauce to a lidded jar or container and store it in the fridge. Be sure to remove it to the counter about an hour before you intend to use it as the oil may set up. It will keep in the fridge for 2 to 3 weeks, but I doubt it will last that long!
You can also transfer the sauce to an ice cube tray to freeze. Frozen sauce will keep for 2 to 3 months if the cubes are wrapped in an airtight container.
Have I mentioned that chimichurri is awesome on everything? Don’t be afraid to drizzle it anywhere you need a bright, herbal, tangy addition, but here are some ideas to get you going:
- Serve with proteins (grilled or otherwise) — steak, chicken, sausage, fish or Oven Roasted Turkey + Chorizo Roulade!
- Try choripan — a simple sandwich of chorizo, bread + chimichurri
- Brighten up roasted or grilled vegetables with a generous drizzle
- Mix into salad dressing or other sauces
- Dollop some on your morning eggs
- Use it anywhere you might add another saucy condiment (think burgers, sandwiches, tacos, etc.)
This is one of my all-time favorite accompaniments — make it your own and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
Love a Homemade Sauce?
- Boozy Mushroom Gorgonzola Sauce
- Homemade Chipotle Honey BBQ Sauce
- Easy Chili Crisp Dipping Sauce for Dumplings
- small bowl
- 1 cup measure
- Cutting board
- Chef's knife
- 2 tbsp shallots minced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- ¼ tsp red pepper flakes
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- ½ lime juiced
- ½ tsp kosher salt
- 1 cup cilantro leaves packed
- 1 cup flat leaf parsley leaves packed
- 2 tbsp fresh oregano
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- Combine the shallots, garlic, red pepper flakes, red wine vinegar, lime juice and kosher salt in a bowl. Set it aside to marinate while you pick the cilantro and parsley leaves from the stems. You'll want 1 packed cup of each.
- Chop the cilantro, parsley and oregano all together. I like a medium-fine texture, but feel free to chop the herbs into a more coarse or more fine texture.
- Add the herbs and olive to the bowl and stir to distribute all the ingredients.
Nutritional values are estimated and provided as a general guideline only.