Five Minute Chimichurri Sauce

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This chimichurri sauce recipe is ready in just 5-minutes, so you can quickly enhance the flavor of your favorite grilled meats and vegetables.

Homemade chimichurri sauce in a small glass bowl.
Table of Contents
  1. What is chimichurri?
  2. Herb selection
  3. Vinegar selection
  4. Add in seasonings
  5. How to make chimichurri sauce
  6. Serve this with
  7. FAQ
  8. Five Minute Chimichurri Sauce Recipe

This healthy, vibrant green chimichurri sauce packs a flavor punch with minimal effort! Fresh herbs combined with aromatic vinegar, savory seasonings, and spicy pepper come together in minutes. Just grab a food processor or blender to do the hard chopping.

The key is to break down the leaves first, then create an emulsified sauce by gradually incorporating olive oil until smooth. This process helps the sauce cling to the food with ease. With just a push of a button, you can spruce up boring pieces of meat or brighten up fresh vegetables with this easy-to-make condiment.

Chimichurri sauce ingredients with labels.

What is chimichurri?

Chimichurri is an uncooked sauce traditionally used in Argentinian cuisine as a condiment for grilled meat. Green chimichurri is made with fresh herbs, tangy vinegar, garlic, olive oil for richness, and red chili pepper flakes for heat. Red chimichurri may also include smoked paprika for color and cayenne or dried red chilies for heat.

Recipe Resources

Herb selection

This recipe is a green chimichurri, using fresh cilantro and parsley leaves as the base. Washing the produce is essential. The leaves can collect dirt and debris during harvesting. Handpick the leaves off the stem, or use a chef’s knife to trim them off.

Vinegar selection

Chimichurri sauce is prized for its herbaceous and spicy notes. My top choice is fermented red wine vinegar. The acidity heightens the sauce taste while adding depth with a lingering tanginess.

You can use other types of vinegar like white wine vinegar or apple cider vinegar for a milder flavor. Avoid distilled white vinegar because it will be too sharp.

Add in seasonings

It’s all about fresh ingredients combined with intense aromatics and spices to make this sauce shine. I use earthy ground cumin, spicy red pepper flakes, and fresh garlic cloves to balance the herbs and vinegar. Extra-virgin olive oil provides a fruity taste while adding richness to the sauce.

How to make chimichurri sauce

You can use a high-speed blender or food processor to make the sauce. Break down the leafy and chunky components with red wine vinegar, garlic, cumin, chili flakes, and salt. This combination helps to coat the leaves with the dried seasoning evenly. 

Process until the leaves and garlic look coarsely chopped. Slowly drizzle the olive oil, breaking down the fat droplets to create a smooth emulsion. If you like a chunky texture, just pulse the leaves a few times to chop before adding the oil.

Serve this with

FAQ

What does chimichurri taste like?

It is fresh and herbaceous from the cilantro and parsley with a slight hint of spice from the red chili peppers and savory flavors from the garlic and cumin. The surprising taste is just the right amount of tanginess from the red wine vinegar. The olive oil makes the sauce smooth and creamy.

Can I make this without a blender or food processor?

Yes! Use a chef’s knife to chop the herbs and mince the garlic finely. Mix with the vinegar, spices, and salt. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until an emulsion forms. The sauce will be coarse in texture and less of bright green color without a blender or food processor.

What is chimichurri sauce good on?

Try it on barbecued meats like the classic pairing of grilled flat iron steak, chicken, or sauteed shrimp. It’s an excellent dip for fresh raw vegetables as an appetizer. I even top it on my eggs and potatoes in the morning.

Spoon scooping green sauce from a small clear bowl.

How the texture gets so smooth

The mechanical shear of the blades works diligently to break down all of the ingredients into tiny particles. Then an emulsion is created with the oil and vinegar. This is when two immiscible components combine to create a consistent and smooth mixture like a sauce.

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Five Minute Chimichurri Sauce

This easy five-minute chimichurri sauce recipe is your ultimate flavor booster to add on top of meats and vegetables.
Pin Print Review
4.84 from 36 votes
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time0 mins
Total Time5 mins
Servings 12 servings
Course Condiment
Cuisine Argentinian

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cilantro leaves, firmly packed
  • 1 cup Italian parsley leaves, firmly packed
  • ¼ cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons roughly chopped garlic
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • ½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

Instructions 

  • Process the Ingredients – Using a blender or food processor, add the cilantro, parsley, red wine vinegar, garlic, salt, cumin, and crushed red pepper.
    Mix for 20 seconds to break down the leaves, stopping to scrape the sides of the cup as needed.
  • Add the Oil – With the machine running on low speed, slowly add the olive oil in a thin steady stream in the lid or feed tube opening.
    Cover and process on medium-high speed until smooth and slightly thickened, with some small herb pieces, for about 60 to 90 seconds. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Notes

  • Recipe Yield: About 3/4 cup
  • Serving Size: 1 tablespoon
  • For a Chunkier Texture: Process for less time
  • Storing: Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

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Nutrition Facts
Five Minute Chimichurri Sauce
Amount Per Serving
Calories 84 Calories from Fat 81
% Daily Value*
Fat 9g14%
Saturated Fat 1g5%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Sodium 102mg4%
Potassium 42mg1%
Carbohydrates 1g0%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 1g1%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 537IU11%
Vitamin C 7mg8%
Calcium 10mg1%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Jessica Gavin

I'm a culinary school graduate, cookbook author, and a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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20 Comments Leave a comment or review

    • Jessica Gavin says

      This recipe is so speedy and I love how I can just add everything to the blender and go! I hope you enjoy it Brita 🙂

      • Cathy says

        I’m in the same predicament, can’t stand cilantro. I’m going to substitute fresh basil!

  1. Scarlett says

    Woe is me! What can I do, I am honestly one of those people who can’t abide cilantro? How could I adjust this recipe to achieve a reasonable facsimile? Or…is it hopeless?

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Hi Scarlett! It’s okay if you don’t like cilantro, I know some friends who either love it of hate it 🙂 You can use more parsley (1:1) to replace the cilantro. Let me know if you have any questions 🙂

  2. Greg Fly says

    Wow, that looks great! I love the addition of cumin, I think that’s what I’ve been missing from mine, probably time to try another batch!

  3. Tania Gorgius says

    I’m so happy to have come across this recipe. The sauce turned out AMAZING! I’ll be referring to this in the future! Can’t wait to explore and feature more of your recipes!

  4. Oleg says

    Tried to make this sauce, went well. Maybe not enough cilantro / parsley and could taste vinegar a bit. But overall seems like a good result. Sadly I haven’t tried it before, so I do not know how it should taste 😉
    Had trouble grounding the cumin. Initially I tried using mortar and pestle without heating cumin on a pan and it didn’t work out.

    Here is the picture of my result:
    https://imgur.com/RFtbDLE

    Thank you!

  5. Morganna Brown says

    Love this quick and easy chimichuri sauce! Such a good and diverse sauce – not only for chicken and steak but great on pasta and salad! Highly recommend a try!

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