Chimichurri Sauce

Chimichurri Sauce is a glorious, garlicky herb sauce meant for slathering over grilled meats.  It’s the Argentinian version of a pesto, and it’s fabulous!

Garlicky Chimichurri Sauce

A friend and I had a quick lunch the other day in an Argentinian restaurant.  They served us a delicious bowl of garlicky chimichurri sauce with bread and it just so happens that this zesty sauce has been on my to do list for a long time.

Chimichurri is a robust Argentinian herbed sauce that’s usually used with grilled meats, but, as I found out, it’s also a perfect dip for crusty bread.

ingredients for chimichurri sauce

The basic idea is finely minced herbs, mostly parsley and oregano, sometimes thyme, basil or cilantro as well, blended with garlic, olive oil, and a bit of citrus.  I managed to get some good tips from our nice waiter, like the fact that he prefers lime in his chimichurri, red pepper flakes gives it some  heat, and cilantro is verboten.

Argentinian Chimichurri Sauce

I used my trusty small food processor, which was perfect for this job, but in fact, according to our waiter, the more authentic way to do this is by hand.  When you do it in a processor the oil emulsifies slightly, giving it a paler color and thicker texture.  Same flavor, though.  The by-hand method will produce a thinner sauce. So either way you want to do it is fine.

I used this sauce in my Chimichurri Shrimp, which can be a fabulous appetizer or a light meal.

Minimal Monday: Chimichurri Sauce

Yield: makes about 1 cup

Minimal Monday: Chimichurri Sauce


  • 2 cloves garlic (use one for a less pungent flavor)
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 shallot, rough chopped
  • 1 cup parsley leaves, be sure to remove most of the stems and rinse well
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro leaves
  • 2 Tbsp fresh oregano leaves (must be fresh!)
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  • 1/2 cup olive oil (plus more for thinning if needed)
  • juice of 1/2 large lime (or 1 small)
  • 1 Tbsp sherry vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp red chili flakes
  • fresh cracked pepper to taste


  1. Drop the garlic, salt and shallot into a small food processor and process until finely minced. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as necessary.
  2. Put the rest of the ingredients in the processor and pulse/process until the herbs are finely minced. Scrape down the sides of the bowl a couple of times. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings to your preference.
  3. Let the sauce rest in the refrigerator for an hour or two before using. If the sauce becomes too thick, thin it down with more olive oil.


  • You can make the sauce spicier by adding a whole jalapeno.
  • You can make the sauce up to a day ahead.
Chimichurri Sauce with fresh bread for dipping

One simple sauce and the sky’s the limit for how you can use it.  I spooned ours over grilled steak, but it’s good on chicken and fish, too. Toss it with baby potatoes before you roast them in the oven.  Use it as a salad dressing, on tacos, or just dip your favorite bread right into it.

Chimichurri Sauce with bread

This tangy gutsy sauce is too easy not to try.

chimichrri sauce


  • Reply
    August 6, 2017 at 5:13 pm

    This is absolutely incredible (and gorgeous to look at!)

    • Reply
      August 6, 2017 at 5:41 pm

      Thanks Brian, I love the color of the sauce, it’s fun to cook with!

  • Reply
    April 21, 2017 at 9:23 am

    I’m definitely making this!!! It looks incredible!

    • Reply
      April 21, 2017 at 3:41 pm

      You’ll want to slather it on everything, I promise :)

  • Reply
    October 16, 2012 at 6:17 pm

    I don’t think I’ve ever tried a chimichurri sauce. I need to make this and try it asap! It is a beautiful color and it sounds delicious.

  • Reply
    Kitchen Belleicious
    October 16, 2012 at 1:51 am

    okay this sauce will go great on just about everything! Fish, meat and chicken. I love it and that morning glory cake is making me crave something nice and sweet:)

  • Reply
    October 16, 2012 at 12:27 am

    One of my favorite restaurants I go to pretty regularly is an Argentine steakhouse. I swear they put chimichurri on almost everything that comes out of the kitchen, and it always tastes so good with whatever it’s on! Each time I go I tell myself I need to cook more like that. Good for you for finally getting to this! Hope I can follow your example soon.

  • Reply
    Jacquelyn Grandy
    October 15, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    The colors in your photos are simply beautiful. I love each and every shot! I feel like I’m right there cooking with you on the second photo. Great job Sue!


  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    October 15, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    I was just watching an episode of a cooking show on PBS on my DVR last night (boy, am I exciting or what!) and they were making morning glory muffins – so your cake catches my eye!

    And the sauce is so green and pretty!

    Saw your Friday post/fall cocktails all over the foodie sites this weekend too :)

  • Reply
    October 15, 2012 at 5:10 pm

    I’ve never made a chimichurri sauce! Must get on that. How versatile!

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