How to Store Cilantro

Cilantro is one of the most widely used herbs to spice up your recipes. If you’re in the mood for tasty Asian or Mexican recipes, you’re going to need cilantro available.

Cilantro not only enhances the appearance of your dish but also adds a unique taste to it. It also helps to relieve anxiety, prevent food poisoning and maintain your digestive tract. So, keep on reading if you want to know the various ways to store cilantro at home.

Storing Fresh Cilantro

Storing cilantro properly will make it easily accessible for you anytime when you want to have that unique taste that cilantro brings. Whether you grow it yourself or get it from the grocery store, you need to know how to properly store cilantro in order for it to last.

How To Harvest Your Fresh Cilantro

Cilantro is one of the most low-maintenance herbs you can grow, which makes it a popular choice for first-time vegetable or herb gardeners. Here’s how you can harvest and store freshly grown cilantro:

  • Take a healthy bunch of green cilantro leaves.
  • Cut the whole bunch to one-third down the way.
  • Use sharp and clean scissors for cutting.
  • The remaining part of the cilantro plant will continue to grow.

When you grow your own cilantro, you don’t have to harvest and store a fair bit for up to a year. In fact, cilantro goes bad after 6 months, even in the freezer. But you can easily harvest a little cilantro once a week, or more often, so you can always have it available to you.

Store Cilantro in Freezer

The freezer can help you keep the cilantro fresh for about 4-6 months. One thing that you should keep in mind is that the defrosted cilantro will not be much stronger in appearance. Therefore, you can use frozen cilantro to cook with, but not for garnishing. You can follow these steps to store the cilantro in the freezer.

  • Take fresh and healthy green cilantro and remove all the leaves.
  • Place these fresh leaves in the plastic bag.
  • Airtight the bag using vacuum sealing to remove the air.
  • Store the bag in the freezer for a long time

If you are not using a vacuum sealer, try to remove all the air from the bag with your hands. The moisture from the extra air and condensation will cause decaying.

Storing Fresh Cilantro in the Fridge:

You can store the cilantro in the fridge for 3-4 weeks easily. If you have an airtight container lined with a paper towel, it is well and good for storing the cilantro in the fridge. Just remember to make sure that you prepare them before storage.

The preparation includes cleaning and drying the cilantro. First, wash it in a strainer and dry completely. Then, you can store them in your fridge via a Tupperware or Ziploc baggy. But, there is another way that you can keep cilantro fresh in the fridge.

Store Cilantro In Water

Don’t worry, if you don’t have a freezer if you don’t have a container, you can simply store it with water to keep it fresh as well.

These steps will keep your cilantro fresh for a longer time.

  • Wash and dry the cilantro while discarding the dirty bottoms.
  • Place these stems upright or vertical in a cup of cold water.
  • Cover the leaves of cilantro with a plastic bag and tie a knot.
  • Set the cup on the refrigerator door.

Don’t forget that water will need to be changed frequently. Check after 3 or 5 days and change the water if it looks cloudy and dirty. Now, you can enjoy fresh cilantro leaves with all the flavors for 1 to 2 weeks. You can use these leaves for garnishing as well.

Store Chopped Cilantro

Another option is to store the chopped cilantro for a longer time. This is also an easy method and doesn’t require hard work or wait. Within few minutes, you can prepare the cilantro to be fresh to use for various dishes.

  • Thoroughly clean the cilantro to remove the dirt.
  • Spread on the paper towel for 2 hours to ensure the water dries out completely.
  • Check for moisture. They will be completely dry if the leaves don’t stick to your hand.
  • When dry, cut the stems and separate the leaves.
  • Chop these leaves coarsely and place them in a paper towel-lined container.
  • Cover the leaves with another paper towel and seal with a lid.
  • Place the container in the fridge.

The chopped cilantro is easy to use and adds great taste to your daily dishes. For this method, you can store cilantro for up to 3 months.

Store Cilantro in Cubes

Storing the cilantro in cubes dramatically increase its shelf life from few weeks to 6 months. If you want long-term storage in months, then go for the cube method. It is also easy and can be performed in few steps.

  • Separate the fresh leaves from the stems and wash them properly.
  • Place the leaves in the blender or food processor.
  • Add water or olive oil for making puree.
  • Then add the puree to the ice cubes tray.
  • Freeze it in the freezer for sufficient time.
  • Transfer the cubes to the resealable plastic bags.

Whenever you need to have cilantro taste in your cooking, take out some cubes and use them. These cubes are best to use in pozole, sweet potato broccoli curry, or any other recipe you want.

How Long Can Cilantro Be Stored?

As compared to some other vegetables, cilantro cannot be stored for many months. This is because cilantro has a moisture content: 92.2% water.

Therefore, the cilantro quickly dries out when you buy it from the store. Only the freezer could increase the shelf life of cilantro to about 6 months. Cilantro can be stored in the fridge for about 3-4 weeks.

Whether your cilantro is in cubes or chopped, the freezer can keep the cilantro fresh for 6 months. Try to store the cilantro for a short time because a long time will not protect the cilantro’s flavor or vitamin content.

How to Tell If Your Cilantro Has Gone Bad

Even after following all the guidelines, your cilantro can go bad. Whether you have stored the cilantro for weeks or months, thoroughly check before using. If you find any of the changes, don’t use the cilantro.

Here are the signs of cilantro that has gone bad.

  • Cilantro leaves have darkened spots
  • Becomes soft or discolored
  • Becomes brown or yellow
  • Gives off a pungent smell

Eating damages cilantro has adverse effects on the health. When you’ve got some bad cilantro on your hands, you should throw it away immediately.

Mistakes to Avoid When Storing Cilantro

Often people make common mistakes when storing the cilantro. These mistakes can spoil or damage the cilantro that you want to use. When your storing cilantro, make sure that you’re not making any of these mistakes.

  • Never store the moist or washed cilantro immediately.
  • Make sure to dry cilantro properly before you store it.
  • Cut the stems off of the cilantro about an inch or two and then place them in water.
  • Fresh cilantro cannot go longer for another season. If you want to have the taste of cilantro next season, storing dried cilantro is the best option.