Cilantro Garlic Sauce

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Cilantro Garlic Sauce boasts flavors reminiscent of a Creamy Chimichurri, delivering a punchy taste that’s hard to ignore!

With just a few simple ingredients you have a sauce that goes with nearly any dish. Perfect for grilled steak, chicken and oily fish such as salmon or tuna. Awesome on tacos, poured over freshly sliced avocado or on blackened shrimp. 

Cilantro Garlic Sauce over freshly sliced avocado in a blue bowl.

You have full control over the spiciness level by opting for oven-roasted garlic or reducing the amount of raw garlic. We’re big fans of garlic, so sometimes we tend to be a bit generous with it in certain dishes (not all of them, though). However, it’s entirely up to you. Begin with a clove, blend it in the food processor, and adjust the garlic amount according to your preference.

Oven Roasted Garlic Recipe | Mean Green Chef

Understanding the Difference: Greek Yogurt vs. Sour Cream

Greek Yogurt:

  • Texture: Greek yogurt has a thicker and creamier texture compared to regular yogurt. This is because Greek yogurt is strained to remove whey, resulting in a denser consistency.
  • Taste: It has a tangy flavor similar to regular yogurt but with a more pronounced tanginess due to the straining process.
  • Nutritional Content: Greek yogurt is higher in protein and lower in carbohydrates compared to sour cream. It is also a good source of probiotics, which are beneficial for gut health.
  • Uses: Greek yogurt is commonly used as a healthy substitute for sour cream in recipes. It can be used in dips, dressings, marinades, and as a topping for dishes like baked potatoes and tacos.

Sour Cream:

  • Texture: Sour cream has a smooth and creamy texture with a slightly tangy taste.
  • Taste: It has a rich and tangy flavor that adds depth to dishes.
  • Nutritional Content: Sour cream is higher in fat and lower in protein compared to Greek yogurt. It is also higher in calories and saturated fat.
  • Uses: Sour cream is often used as a topping for baked potatoes, nachos, and chili. It is also used in baking to add moisture and richness to cakes, muffins, and scones.

In summary, Greek yogurt is a healthier alternative to sour cream due to its higher protein content and lower fat content. However, both have their own unique flavor and texture characteristics that make them suitable for various culinary applications.

Blackened Shrimp Tacos with Roasted Salsa Verde Sauce
Blackened Shrimp Tacos

Tip: Greek yogurt can be prone to curdling when subjected to high temperatures, so it’s best to use full-fat (whole milk) Greek yogurt for cooking purposes. When incorporating it into sauces, gradually heat it to avoid curdling and maintain a smooth texture.

Substituting Greek Yogurt for Sour Cream

Greek yogurt can be a great substitute for sour cream in many recipes, offering a similar tangy flavor and creamy texture. Here’s how to do it:

  1. One-to-One Replacement: In most recipes, you can simply replace sour cream with an equal amount of Greek yogurt. For example, if a recipe calls for 1 cup of sour cream, use 1 cup of Greek yogurt instead.

  2. Adjust Consistency: Greek yogurt tends to be thicker than sour cream, so you may need to adjust the consistency of your recipe. If the dish seems too thick, you can thin out the Greek yogurt with a little water or milk until you reach the desired consistency.

  3. Consider Fat Content: Greek yogurt is often lower in fat than sour cream, especially if you’re using the non-fat or low-fat varieties. Keep this in mind when substituting, as it may affect the overall texture and richness of the dish.

  4. Taste Test: Greek yogurt has a tangier flavor compared to sour cream, so you may notice a slight difference in taste. Taste test your dish as you go and adjust the seasonings as needed to balance the flavors.

By following these tips, you can successfully substitute Greek yogurt for sour cream in your favorite recipes, whether you’re making dips, sauces, dressings, or baked goods.

Ways to Enjoy Cilantro Garlic Sauce

  • Mexican dishes
  • Tacos
  • Enchiladas
  • Nachos
  • Grilled vegetables
  • Avocados
  • Blackened shrimp

Preserving Zesty Flavor: Storing Cilantro Garlic Sauce for Extended Freshness

Here’s how to store cilantro garlic sauce to maintain its freshness:

  1. Refrigeration: Store cilantro garlic sauce in the refrigerator at all times. The cool temperature helps to slow down bacterial growth and preserve the freshness of the sauce.

  2. Airtight Container: Transfer the cilantro garlic sauce to an airtight container for storage. Use a clean container with a tight-fitting lid to prevent air from entering and causing the sauce to spoil faster.

  3. Check Expiration Date: Pay attention to the expiration date on the cilantro garlic sauce container or jar. Discard any sauce that has passed its expiration date, as it may no longer be safe to consume.

  4. Stir Before Use: Before serving, give the container a good stir to mix any separated ingredients back together. This ensures that the sauce maintains its consistency and flavor.

Shelf Life: When stored properly in the refrigerator, unopened cilantro garlic sauce can last for about 1-2 months past the expiration date printed on the packaging. Once opened, it should be consumed within 1-2 weeks for the best quality.

By following these storage guidelines, you can enjoy the zesty and aromatic flavor of cilantro garlic sauce for an extended period, whether as a dip, marinade, or condiment for your favorite dishes.

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Cilantro Garlic Sauce over freshly sliced avocado in a blue bowl.

How to Make Cilantro Garlic Sauce

Cilantro Garlic Sauce being poured over freshly sliced avocado.

Cilantro Garlic Sauce

Cilantro Garlic Sauce could easily be considered a Creamy Chimichurri its flavors are right on point and nearly smack you upside your head!
Prep Time: 4 minutes
Cook Time: 1 minute
Prep Time: 4 minutes
Cook Time: 1 minute
Servings: 2 cups


  • 2 cups (480 grams) Greek yogurt or sour cream, full fat
  • 4 Tablespoons (60 grams) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon (5 ml) white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, washed
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 lime, zest + juice
  • Pink Himalayan sea salt or Kosher sea salt, to taste
  • freshly cracked black pepper, to taste


  • Add Greek yogurt (or sour cream), EVOO, white vinegar, cilantro, garlic, and lime to a food processor or blender and blitz for 30 seconds to a minute until desired consistency is reached. Season with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste.
    Ingredients for Cilantro Garlic Sauce in food processor ready to be blitzed.
  • Can be served immediately, for deeper flavor pour into an airtight container and allow to chill for a couple of hours or overnight. Will keep in the fridge up to 5 days.
    Cilantro Garlic Sauce being poured over freshly sliced avocado.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Creative Recipe Inspiration

Indulge in a burst of flavor with our Blackened Chicken and Mango Salsa. Succulent chicken breasts, seared to perfection with a spicy blackening seasoning, harmonize beautifully with the refreshing sweetness of ripe mangoes, creating a tantalizing dish that’s as visually stunning as it is delicious.

Savor the zesty flavors of Mexico with our Roasted Salsa Verde. Made from fire-roasted tomatillos, jalapeños, and onions, this tangy salsa boasts a smoky depth that perfectly complements the bright, fresh taste of cilantro and lime. Drizzle it over tacos, spoon it onto grilled meats, or simply enjoy it with crispy tortilla chips.

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Hey there, fellow food enthusiast! Welcome to Mean Green Chef, where every dish tells a story and every recipe is a labor of love. I’m thrilled to share a bit about myself and the journey that led me here, stirring pots and sprinkling spices for over three decades!

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    Join the Conversation

    1. We grow garlic and cilantro in our gardens so this is a perfect recipe for us. I look forward to trying this in June when we pull our fresh garlic. Catherine

      1. Great, Catherine! Thanks so much please be sure to share on our FB page when you make some! 🙂

    2. I DO want to be smacked upside my head with this sauce lol! (Wait, it sounds kinda weird written this way…) We really do have a delayed Cinco de Mayo party coming up this weekend (because the original party was rained out). So I’m trying some of your salsa/sauce recipes. Thanks for sharing so many wonderful recipes!

      1. Lol, I can get carried away in my food descriptions, but OH THIS SAUCE! I’m excited to hear how your delayed Cinco de Mayo Party goes, please be sure to share some pics with us of the celebration and food!🤗🤗🤗

    3. This looks soooo good! I love cilantro – could eat it by the handfuls!

      1. Thanks so much, Julia! 🙌

    4. This sounds delicious. I love to add garlic to my dishes as well. This will be a great addition to add to my gluten-free dishes. I will mention this recipe in my gluten-free food blog with a follow backlink to your recipe.

      1. Thank you, Desi, much appreciated! 🙂

    5. Oh! I can’t wait to try this recipe. it looks amazing. Thanks for sharing!

      1. Thanks so much, Joanne, please be sure to tag us @meangreenchef when you make a batch! 🙂

    6. I can’t wait to try this! I need to figure out a substitute for Dairy free version but I definitely want to try something similar ☺️ Thanks!

      1. Hi, Erika! Please let me know what you come up with as a sub for the Greek yogurt would love to know about other options. 🙂

    7. Oooohhhhhh….I cant wait to try this on an upcoming taco recipe. Thanks for all the great info, too!

      1. Perfect for tacos Carrie, please leave a review here when you make some! So glad that you find our info helpful too 🙂

    8. This sauce looks so good. I would put it on so many things, but especially some steak! Yum!

      1. Oh yea, awesome steak sauce for sure Erika! 🙂 Thanks for visiting!

    9. So hooked with this dressing. I put it on my chicken or turkey sandwiches instead of mayo and its soooo tasty!

      1. So happy to hear that you are enjoying our Cilantro Garlic Sauce! 🙂

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