Chimichurri is the deservedly famous herb sauce of Argentina, and in short, it makes everything better. It’s herby, tangy, garlicky, a little tart, a little spicy, and just fresh, bright, and zingy all around.
Chimichurri sauce is typically served with a steak of some kind and is the classic accompaniment to sirloin cap (or picanha). It is an uncooked sauce, usually made with parsley and garlic, often other herbs, and often a splash of something acidic like vinegar or lemon juice. If you want a spicier chimichurri sauce, you can add more red pepper flakes and garlic to the recipe, or you can try Ramp Chimichurri Sauce. It tastes even better the day after it’s made, and it takes about 10 minutes to make!
The cilantro is optional, and many Argentinean cooks don’t include it in their chimichurri. Cilantro lovers appreciate the addition, but cilantro haters, not so much, so pick the option that works for your group.
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How to Use Chimichurri Sauce
So, what is chimichurri sauce good on? Honestly, the better question is, what isn’t it good on? In Argentina, chimichurri sauce is frequently served with meat, and beef is the most common meat in Argentinean cuisine. But while this sauce is mind-blowingly great with steaks and other cuts of beef, that’s just the beginning of how you can use it. It goes well with pork, chicken, fish, seafood, and vegetables of all stripes. I love it with roasted vegetables, roasted cauliflower in particular. It makes a fantastic dip for Zucchini Fritti as well.
Flank, flat iron, and skirt steaks are some of the most popular steaks paired with chimichurri, but again, any cut of beef will be great.
Chimichurri Sauce: This Argentinian sauce is tangy, garlicky, and herbal, traditionally served with steak, but SO good with vegetables, seafood, chicken, and more!Tweet This
Chimichurri Sauce Ingredients
- Fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves – This is the backbone of this sauce, and I think flat-leaf parsley has a more appealing flavor and texture than curly parsley.
- Fresh cilantro leaves – If you like cilantro, add this in; if you don’t, leave it out. Both versions are delicious, though some Argentineans will tell you that they grew up eating chimichurri with cilantro, and some think authentic Argentinean chimichurri only contains parsley.
- Garlic – Please use fresh cloves here, as the freshness of the garlic is critical to the optimal flavor of the sauce.
- Lemon juice – This provides the acidity in the sauce — use fresh if at all possible!
- Oregano – You can use 1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves or 1 ½ teaspoons dried. The flavor will be slightly different, but both work in this recipe.
- Red pepper flakes – A little bit of heat is common in chimichurri sauce, and you can increase or reduce the amount to your taste.
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper – Be liberal with the seasonings; taste as you add them.
- Extra-virgin olive oil – Use a good fruity oil, and make sure it’s fresh. You can adjust the amount up or down if you want a thicker or a thinner sauce.
How to Make Chimichurri
- Place the parsley, cilantro (if using), garlic, lemon juice, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper in the food processor and pulse to combine. With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil through the feed tube, scraping down the sides as necessary until everything is well combined. Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed.
Make Ahead and Storage
Chimichurri sauce can be stored in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. Give it a good stir before serving each time.
What to Serve Chimichurri Sauce With
More Herb-Based Sauces
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- 2 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves (washed and dried)
- ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves (washed and dried, optional)
- 5 cloves garlic
- 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh oregano (or 1 ½ teaspoons dried)
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt (or to taste)
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper (or to taste)
- ¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Place the parsley, cilantro (if using), garlic, lemon juice, oregano, red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper in the food processor and pulse to combine.
- With the motor running, drizzle in the olive oil through the feed tube, scraping down the sides as necessary until everything is well combined. Taste and adjust the seasonings as needed.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.