Budget-Friendly Kitchen Tip: How to Substitute Dried Herbs for Fresh

Have a recipe that calls for a measly 1 tablespoon of fresh herbs but don’t want to buy a whole bunch? Follow this simple guide to substitute dried herbs and save a bundle (or a bunch).how to substitute dried herbs for fresh

General Rule of Thumb:

1 tablespoon fresh herb  = 1 teaspoon dried herb

Dried herbs have a concentrated flavor that mellows with cooking, so they work best in recipes like sauces, soups or baked dishes with long cooking times. Be sure to add dried herbs near the beginning of the cooking time to allow the flavors to soften. Heartier herbs, like oregano, thyme, sage and rosemary* work the best.

Stick with the fresh version for delicate herbs like basil, mint and parsley. And add them near the end of cooking for the biggest splash of flavor.  To make fresh herbs last up to a week once you’ve purchased them, wrap the stems with a wet paper towel, and store in a zip-top plastic bag in the refrigerator.

Trying growing your own herbs at home. Planting and caring for a garden can be a fun and educational family activity. Herbs like mint, basil and parsley are easy to grown and can be planted in pots.

Check out our guide to a Simple Herb Garden and this USDA guide to Growing a Family Garden for more information.

*Note: Rosemary is the one exception to the rule of thumb above. When substituting dried rosemary for fresh, use equal amounts.

Related Recipes:

Simple Herb Garden

Ultimate Clean Eating Freezer Recipe: Basic Marinara Sauce

Ways to Save: Homemade Ranch Dressing

Ways to Save: Grown Green Onions

2 thoughts on “Budget-Friendly Kitchen Tip: How to Substitute Dried Herbs for Fresh

  1. Katie

    I prefer the flavor of fresh. Many herbs you can also chop and freeze with a little water in ice cube trays. Each cube is about a tablespoon. Just drop into whatever you are cooking for easy fresh herbs! Makes your money go a little further so you don’t end up throwing away half a bunch of fresh herbs.

  2. Andrea

    Personally I like using dried – I found a great site for organic dried herbs and spices at http://maisonterre.net/shop/ with fast shipping and great prices, which is good for my budget. =)

    I also really like the look and feel of having all kinds of wonderful flavors, smells and textures to play with when creating meals for my family in the kitchen. Making food at home is so rewarding and so much healthier for us, not to mention good for the pocketbook.

    Thank you for creating this blog, I look forward to reading more from you.

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