Carrot Greens Chimichurri

Don't toss those tops! Carrot greens are just as edible as carrots themselves, and they're delicious in this tangy chimichurri sauce, pesto, and more.

Carrot greens

Today, we’re making chimichurri out of carrot greens! I don’t know who ever spread the idea that vibrant carrot tops should be tossed. They’re edible and delicious, so let’s start using them!

This carrot tops recipe comes with a cute little backstory. A few years ago, Jack and I spent some time in Argentina, where I fell in love with chimichurri sauce. Upon returning home, I couldn’t find a recipe that tasted just like the bright, smoky chimichurri we had there. But recently, we learned that one of our friends in Austin is Argentinian! He kindly called his mother for her chimichurri recipe, and it was, of course, just right.

This recipe is a slight spin on hers. I used carrot greens instead of the traditional parsley, and I added less water and oil to make a thicker, dip-able sauce. It’s not at all authentic, but it’s delicious nonetheless.

Carrots with green tops

How to Use Carrot Greens

Before we get to the sauce, let’s talk carrot tops! They have a lightly sweet, earthy flavor that’s like a cross between carrots and parsley, and they’re delicious raw or cooked. This recipe uses most of the tops from one small bunch of carrots, or half the tops from a large bunch. That means you’ll have leftovers! Aside from this chimichurri sauce, here are a few of my favorite ways to use carrot greens:

Chopped carrot tops

Carrot Greens Tips

Ready to cook? Here are my best tips for working with carrot greens in the kitchen:

  • Clip them off right away. In order to keep the carrot leaves (and the carrots!) fresh, you need to store them separately. As soon as you get a bunch of carrots with bright green tops, clip off the greens. Wrap them up and store them in the crisper drawer in your fridge until you’re ready to use them, or freeze them to make vegetable stock.
  • Wash and dry them well. It’s no secret that carrots grow in dirt, so wash the leaves well! You’ll also want to dry them with a kitchen towel or salad spinner before chopping them – if they’re too wet, they’ll clump together and be soggy.
  • Get rid of the tough stems, unless you’re making stock. Carrot greens’ thick stems can add delicious flavor to vegetable stock, but they’re too tough to use in salads, bowls, or sauces like this chimichurri. I like to use the tender leaves in carrot top recipes right away and freeze the stems to simmer into stock later on.

Chimichurri recipe ingredients

Chimichurri with Carrot Tops Recipe

This chimichurri sauce is so simple to make! First, wash your greens well, and chop them as finely as you can. Then, mix them with spices, olive oil, and white wine vinegar. That’s it! I love to serve this sauce with roasted carrots as a starter or side dish, but it’s also fantastic with grilled veggies, crusty bread, or any cooked protein.

If this chimichurri is too oily or vinegary for you, dilute it with 1/4-1/2 cup of lukewarm water. Mix well, and spoon it over whatever you’re eating, rather than serving it as a dip.

Stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, the sauce will keep for up to 4 days. It will thicken in the fridge, so allow it to come to room temperature before serving!

Roasted carrots with carrot greens chimichurri

More Favorite “Scrap” Recipes

If you love this carrot tops recipe, try experimenting with other common veggie scraps! Here are a few recipes to get you started:

Carrot Greens Chimichurri

rate this recipe:
4.79 from 32 votes
Prep Time: 10 mins
Chimichurri is a smoky Argentinian sauce made with parsley, vinegar, and olive oil. In this recipe, I swap carrot greens for the parsley. The tangy sauce is fantastic on salads, roasted veggies, toasted bread, or any cooked protein!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup finely chopped carrot greens
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Instructions

  • In a small bowl, combine the carrot greens, oregano, cumin, paprika, red pepper flakes, garlic, salt, and pepper. Stir in the vinegar and olive oil. Taste and adjust seasonings.

 

132 comments

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Rate this recipe (after making it)




  1. Elis
    07.21.2021

    Does the taste become bitter or otherwise not as fresh if the sauce is made the day before? Does it stay green in that case? Thanks! Looking forward to trying this…

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      07.21.2021

      Hi Elis, it should be just fine on day 2 (maybe slightly less green).

  2. Barb
    06.29.2021

    5 stars
    This is so yummy! I’m grateful for a way to use the carrot greens from our garden. Thank you!

  3. Amanda
    06.20.2021

    5 stars
    Amazing! Great use of carrot greens. Just the right blend of spices.

    • Jeanine Donofrio
      06.20.2021

      Hi Amanda, I’m glad you enjoyed it!

  4. Linda S.
    06.06.2021

    5 stars
    I made half of the recipe as I didn’t have enough of the carrot greens. I added a shake of coriander and some chives and this is sooo yummy !! Will be adding it to salads and on crackers with cheese as an appetizer. Thanks so much for the wonderful recipe !!

  5. Lindsay
    06.05.2021

    5 stars
    This was amazing! My husband and I grew a ton of carrots and when we picked them I had this feeling that the greens had to be good for something because they smell so lovely. The first thing that came up was your recipe and we had it with steak and salad and it was absolutely fabulous. Our friends said it was one of the best meals they had and that this chimichurri sauce was the best. Thank you!

  6. V
    05.16.2021

    5 stars
    It was delicious! I added a bit of dried basil, and used smoked sweet paprika instead.

  7. Sarah
    04.18.2021

    This recipe is incredible and so easy to whip up right after bringing home a bunch of carrots. I didn’t have quite the full amount of carrot greens so I added cilantro and didn’t have white wine vinegar so used a mix of lemon juice and apple cider vinegar. I think next time I would use a bit less of the liquids, but I’ve been using it more as a spread than a dip. I used it a few different ways, but my favourite was on a bagel with an egg and cream cheese

  8. Jen
    04.13.2021

    5 stars
    I made this a couple of times now and the family love it. Really tasty with veggies to dip or with nachos.

A food blog with fresh, zesty recipes.
Photograph of Jeanine Donofrio and Jack Mathews in their kitchen

Hello, we're Jeanine and Jack.

We love to eat, travel, cook, and eat some more! We create & photograph vegetarian recipes from our home in Chicago, while our shiba pups eat the kale stems that fall on the kitchen floor.