The Best Simple Chives Substitutes

chive substitutes

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

What are Chives?

Chives, are a grassy looking green herb used in French and other western cuisines. They are part of the onion family so the flavour is fresh with a subtle onion backnote. Garlic chives as similar but the flavour is more in the garlic spectrum. There are also Chinese chives which have thicker leaves and are used as more of a vegetable in Asian cooking.

Chives are a useful herb for people following a low FODMAP diet or anyone with intolerance to garlic and onion as they bring some of those deeply complex flavours without the digestive upset.

The Best Chives Substitutes

(in order of preference)

1. Green Onion / Scallions

While much larger and stronger in flavour, the green tops of green onions (also called shallots or scallions) are the closest substitutes for chopped chives. As the flavour is more pungent, start with less.

2. Parsley

Often I use chives to add some greenery as well as the subtle onion flavour. In those cases parsley will add the visual elements and enough fresh herbiness to make a passable substitute.

3. Cooked Onion

If you don’t have chives, adding some cooked onion to the dish will give the flavour boost, although you’ll miss the visual element.

4. Pickled Onion

Some finely chopped pickled onion will be a stronger alternative to chives but will work in cases where there are other bold flavours at play.

5. Garlic

A tiny amount if very finely chopped garlic might work. But be careful as it can easily over power. And of course it won’t have any of the pretty green colour.

How to Prepare Chives

Wash and dry the chives and finely chop or snip with scissors. The whole blade can be used.

How to Store Chives

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

You can also freeze chives – they will be completely wilted and look terrible when defrosted but will still add their characteristic subtle oniony flavour and gorgeous green colour.

Chives go with…

  • Chicken & Chives
  • Eggs & Chives
  • Mayonnaise & Chives
  • Cheese & Chives
  • Potato & Chives
  • Sour Cream & Chives

More Ingredient Substitutes

Also see see the Simple Ingredients Substitutes Index.

Have fun in the kitchen!

With love,
Jules x