Looking for an alternative to Methi (Fenugreek Leaves)? You’re in the right place! Keep reading for my favourite simple Methi substitutes.
What is Methi?
Methi are the leaves from the Fenugreek plant. They can be used fresh or dried in Indian cuisine especially in curries.
The flavour of dried methi is a little like mint but with an earthy, complex curry background.
The Best Methi Substitutes
(in order of preference)
1. Skip it.
For years I’ve been skipping methi in my curries and haven’t had any complaints! Because there are already so many other flavours the curry will still taste great.
2. Dried Mint
Dried mint leaves have a similar freshness to methi but don’t have the earthy, curry background.
3. Fenugreek Seeds
ADding some ground fenugreek seeds to the dish when you are cooking, will give the earthy complex flavours you’d get from methi but won’t have the herby aromatics. The seeds are much stronger in these earthy flavours so use sparingly.
4. Curry Leaves
Fresh or dried curry leaves will add beautiful fragrance to your curry in a similar way to Methi. If using dried, just crumble them in, If using fresh, you can just add them at the end of cooking but for a flavour explosion fry your curry leaves in a little oil until they are crispy.
5. Fresh Coriander (Cilantro)
Will work in a similar way but just takes the flavours in a different direction. Coriander packs a big flavour punch so you won’t feel like you’re missing anything.
6. Fresh Basil
While methi has a completely different flavour to basil, I can’t think of a place where the aromatic freshness of basil wouldn’t work well as an alternative.
7. Peppermint Tea Leaves
Peppermint tea is just dried peppermint leaves and as with dried mint they are are significantly more intense in flavour than fresh so use sparingly.
How to Prepare Methi
Dried leaves can be used straight from the pack. For fresh leaves wash, dry then pick the leaves away from the stems and discard the stems. The leaves can then be either used whole, torn or finely chopped.
How to Store Methi
To avoid your pantry smelling like a curry house, I store my dried methi in a glass jar.
If you happen to have fresh methi leaves keep them wrapped in paper towel and then in plastic bag in the fridge. Will generally keep for 3-5 days, depending on how fresh they were.
You can also freeze fresh Methi – it will be completely wilted when defrosted but will still add amazing flavour and fragrance.
Delicious Methi Pairings
- Almond & Methi
- Lamb & Methi
- Chicken & Methi
- Potato & Methi
- Yoghurt & Methi
More Ingredient Substitutes
- The Ultimate Guide to Vegetable Substitutes
- Collard Greens
- Miso Paste
- Oyster Sauce
Also see see the Simple Ingredients Substitutes Index.
Have fun in the kitchen!