7 Ways to Use Up Your Leftover Herbs

By Carolyn Stine March 11, 2019 

You plucked a few basil leaves for a recipe… now what do you do with the rest of the bunch?

We all know the feeling. You get so excited to meal prep, laying out your recipes for the week, shopping for all the ingredients. You’ve made and enjoyed those meals, but between a handful of basil here and a parsley garnish there, you’re stuck with a fridge full of leftover herbs that you feel bad about wasting, but don’t quite know what to do with.

Now that’s our cue to step in. While we love all things cooking and entertaining, what we don’t love is tossing out unused ingredients at the end of the week or weekend, and so often these end up being our herbal friends. Take a break from your waste worries and check out our Bashed guide to reusing those leftover herbs and turning them into the superstars of next week’s meals.

Basil

Let’s free associate for a minute here. What’s the word that most of us think of when basil comes to mind? PESTO. Welp, you can enjoy your fresh pesto year-round by whipping up batches in your Magic Bullet using that leftover basil and popping it in the freezer. We like leaving out the fresh parm and adding a layer of olive oil over the top to minimize browning. Try freezing it in an ice cube tray so you can grab as much as as little as you need - toss a cube in with your morning scrambled eggs or your freshly made zoodles and it will seem like a whole new world in your kitchen.

Sage

A wise sage once told us… just kidding. Herb puns aside, sage is one of the most flavorful, exciting herbs out there, and we love combining it with sweet honey for an unexpected herbal kick in our morning tea. Try this sage honey drizzled over your oatmeal with crunchy nuts, or on top of fresh scones with butter, too.

Cilantro

Besides throwing that extra cilantro on top of your breakfast tacos, chili, or shakshuka, why not take the whole bunch and create one of our all-time favorite condiments? Hello Barbuto’s salsa verde, we see you. Traditionally served atop the infamous J.W. chicken, this herb-y, bright green salsa is the perfect way to dress up all of your leftover herbs, and those chicken breasts sitting in the freezer that you don’t know what to do with.

Dill

If we had to cast a vote for the most underrated herb, fresh dill might be the winner. We find that it brightens up our everyday recipes in unexpected ways, every time. Take your classic chicken soup, for example. Have you ever tried it dressed up with dill and fresh lemon? In a pinch, we love whipping up this cucumber salad with fresh dill as a side dish or a snack, too. It cools down that fried cauliflower rice you’ve been planning to eat for dinner this week, and also pairs perfectly with a piece of freshly seared salmon.

Rosemary

Nothing quite beats a heaping pat of butter atop that perfect medium-rare steak, now does it? We especially love garlic and rosemary butter with our steakhouse entrees, and it’s even easier (and more cost efficient) to whip this up at home. Create your own rosemary compound butter for your next date night in, and don’t forget to freeze it in individual servings for next time.

Mint

Breakfast is the name of the game for using up that fresh mint in your fridge. Try throwing a handful into your morning smoothie with chocolate protein powder for a mint choco chip flavor bomb. Or, we love finely chopping it and adding it atop a bowl of fresh fruit and plain Greek Yogurt. And when in doubt - infuse! Fresh mint added to your water bottle will help to ensure that you’re getting the maximum number of glasses each day.

What are your favorite ways to use up your leftover herbs? Share your recipes in the comments below or tag us in your minty shake on Instagram!

 

 

 

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Carolyn Stine

A party without cake is just a meeting.

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