The Best Simple Chervil Substitutes

Chervil Substitutes

Looking for an alternative to Chervil? You’re in the right place! Keep reading for my favourite simple Chervil substitutes.

What is Chervil?

Chervil is a delicate leafy green herb used in French cooking. The aroma is fresh and green with a very mild, slightly sweet aniseed back note.

The Best Chervil Substitutes

(in order of preference)

1. Flat Leaf Parsley

Parsley leaves are more rubust and the flavour is less distinct than chervil. Which means it won’t clash with any of the other flavours in your dish. It does add some lovely freshness and the visual greenery so its definitely the closest match.

2. Tarragon

Is like chervil dialled up to 100. The flavours a similar but where chervil is delicate and gently aniseedy, tarragon will punch you in the face with flavour (not necessarily a bad thing!). If substituting tarragon tread gently and use much less so you don’t over power.

3. Dill

Will work in a similar way to chervil but just takes the flavours in a different direction. So you won’t feel like you’re missing anything.

4. Chives

While chives will give you some of the visual greenery you’d get from chervil, the flavour is totally different. But since both chives and chervil go well with similar ingredients it’s unlikely to be a problem.

5. Basil

Basil is much stronger and more peppery than chervil, so it wouldn’t be my first choice. But it will add some greenery and fragrance to your dish so you could do worse.

6. Coriander / Cilantro

Visually coriander leaves look like a larger version of chervil but the flavour is completely different. But if it’s the only fresh herb you have it will be better than nothing. Just start with less and add more if needed.

How to Prepare Chervil

Wash, dry then pick the leaves away from the stems. Either discard the stems ore finely chop and use them as well. The leaves can then be either used whole, torn or finely chopped. If I’m in a rush I just coarsely chop the whole bunch including stems.

How to Store Chervil

I keep mine wrapped in paper towel and then in plastic bag in the fridge. Will generally keep for 5 days possibly longer, depending on how fresh it was when you bought it.

You can also freeze chervil – it will be completely wilted and look terrible when defrosted but will still add it’s characteristic subtle fresh flavour.

Chervil goes with…

  • Chicken & Chervil
  • Eggs & Chervil
  • Fish & Chervil
  • Mayonnaise & Chervil
  • Lemon & Chervil
  • Cream & Chervil

More Ingredient Substitutes

Also see see the Simple Ingredients Substitutes Index.

Have fun in the kitchen!

With love,
Jules x