Fresh herbs are often an afterthought, thrown onto a plate as an unwanted and unneeded garnish. But they can be so much more than that. Take parsley, for instance. Bright and fresh-tasting, parsley is a workhorse of an herb. We love using it to pep up just about everything: dips and condiments, meat and fish dishes, and pastas and salads. We've rounded up our favorite parsley recipes to show you how this herb can shine.
Parsley's bright flavor is at home in many dips and sauces. Melintzanosalata is smoky Greek eggplant dip studded with parsley, green bell pepper, and jalapeño. For a creamy dip to pair with salmon or a plate or crudités try our green goddess sauce, equal amounts of parsley, tarragon, scallions, and chives mixed with mayonnaise and a little crème fraîche and vinegar.
We find that parsley pairs especially well with seafood. Try pairing meaty swordfish with an Italian puttanesca sauce, briny with anchovies, olives, and capers and bright with parsley and lemon juice. Or try grilling lobster with a garlic-parsley compound butter. The butter melts down into the meat, essentially poaching the lobster in its own shell.
If you're going to use parsley as garnish, try frying it to give it a little crunch. Frying it plain makes for a classic accompaniment to bone marrow. The herb cuts through the richness wonderfully. Batter-frying parsley makes it extra crunchy and satisfying enough to serve as an appetizer on its own.
Find all of these dishes and more in our collection of parsley recipes.
Grilled Lobster with Garlic-Parsley Butter
Smoky romesco sauce brightens burnished, crispy octopus, which is marinated in an herb-packed vinaigrette, in this recipe adapted from chef Dan Moss of Terroir Auburn restaurant in Clare Valley, Australia.
Grilled Lamb Chops and Squash with Herb Salad and Sunchokes
Persian Herbed Frittatas with Fenugreek (Kookoo Sabzi)
This green cocktail combines kale-infused rum with a housemade green harissa syrup, which adds sugar for balance and a hint of jalapeño for pop.
Italy’s puttanesca sauce, briny with anchovies, olives, and capers, pairs well with swordfish or any other meaty fish.
We love this now-classic dish served at the Blue Ribbon restaurants in New York City, in which the marrow is spread over grilled toast and topped with fried parsley.
Any way you make it, there is nothing like falafel’s first bite: the crisp-fried exterior giving way to a creamy center of seasoned mashed beans, garlic, and parsley.
Crunchy, batter-fried parsley sprigs not only make a great appetizer, but are equally good as a garnish for grilled fish or soup.
A thick, sweet red onion jam makes for a great accompaniment to this herbaceous grilled chicken.
Raw minced garlic combines with parsley and lemon zest in this vibrant garnish that cuts through the richness of grilled meats and fish, as well as osso buco, a specialty of its birthplace, Milan.
Brilliantly green and vibrantly flavored, this simple soup—garnished with fiery, fresh-grated horseradish—is a perfect first course for a Passover feast, or any early spring meal.
Date, Parsley, and Sumac Quiche with Crushed Almonds
This dish, a specialty from the Burgundy region of France, makes for an elegant holiday appetizer or lunch.
Cinnamon and allspice add distinctive flavor to this version of the classic Middle Eastern parsley salad.
Crisp, salty pancetta, earthy parsley, and lemon combine beautifully in this salad from Houston’s Dolce Vita restaurant.
Sun-dried tomatoes and Aleppo peppers stud these Lebanese kebabs.
Flounder with Lemon Caper Sauce