Exclusive List of 34 Cooking Herbs | Common Herbs for Cooking

Go through the List of 34 Cooking Herbs and have an endless supply in your kitchen all year round by growing them indoors or outdoors.

There are many herbs that you can use to add flavor to your salads and stews! Keeping that in mind, we have combined an exclusive List of Cooking Herbs that are going to come in handy while you prepare your favorite recipe!


1. Parsley

List of Cooking Herbs

USDA Zone: 4-9

Botanical Name: Petroselinum crispum

Common Names: Peterselie, Prezzemolo, Peterselie, Persilja

Growing Requirements: Full sun to partial shade, evenly moist, mildly acidic soil, feeding with slow-release fertilizer before and during planting, seeds started indoors

Flavor Profile: Mildly bitter, similar to cilantro

Edible Parts: Leaves and stems

How to Cook: Use fresh leaves to garnish soups and salads. Cook dried herbs together with cheese-based sauces, pasta, and eggs.

Suitable Dishes: Foods containing a heavy garlic content, grilled meat, roasted chicken/lamb, vegetable curries of the French cuisine.

2. Cilantro

USDA Zone: 3-8

Botanical Name: Coriandrum sativum

Common Names: Dhania, Yuan-sui, Koriander, Koendoro, Kishnets posevnoi

Growing Requirements: Partial sun, moist and rich soil, nurture with water-soluble fertilizer after two weeks of growth

Flavor Profile: Zesty, lemon-like

Edible Parts: Raw or cooked leaves

How to Cook: You can add it at pre or post preparation of your meals.

Suitable Dishes: Soups, salads, curries, vegetables, fish and meats, making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

3. Chives

 

USDA Zone: 3-10

Botanical Name: Allium schoenoprasum

Common Names: Oriental garlic, Asian chives, Chinese chives, Chinese leeks. Allium schoenoprasum

Growing Requirements: Full sun, consistent watering, all-purpose fertilizer (16:16:8), composting to 8-inches

Flavor Profile: Garlic-like and pungent

Edible Parts: Whole plant, including leaves and flowers

How to Cook: Toss chives at the end while cooking, sliced thinly, for a refined finish. You can also use coarsely chopped leaves as garnish.

Suitable Dishes: Dips, baked potatoes, quesadillas.

4. Sage

List of Cooking Herbs that you never knew

USDA Zone: 5-9

Botanical Name: Salvia officinalis

Common Names: Common sage, garden sage, golden sage, kitchen sage, true sage, culinary sage, Dalmatian sage, and broadleaf sage

Growing Requirements: Full sun, well-draining soil, protection from aphids, powdery mildew, springtime pruning of heavy, woody stems

Flavor Profile: Refreshing flavors like lemon and mint

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: You can add fresh leaves to meat stuffings, sausages, sandwiches, and pork dishes.

Suitable Dishes: All kinds of meats, making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

5. Thyme

USDA Zone: 2-5

Botanical Name: Thymus vulgaris

Common Names: English thyme, summer thyme, winter thyme, French thyme, or garden thyme

Growing Requirements: Part sun, loamy, sandy soil, even watering, occasional trimming to prevent leggy growth, light mulching in winters, prevention of root rot

Flavor Profile: Pleasant and pungent, like cloves

Edible Parts: Stems and leaves

How to Cook: Chop of young green leaves and add to roast chicken, ham, desserts or cocktails as a garnish.

Suitable Dishes: Festive foods like turkey, scalloped potatoes, bread, and French Cuisine.

6. Oregano

USDA Zone: 5-9

Botanical Name: Origanum vulgare

Common Names: Origanum majorana, sweet marjoram, marjoram, majorlane, majorane, and marjorlaine

Growing Requirements: Direct sun, warm indoor temperatures, adequate watering, monthly feeding, aphid control

Flavor Profile: Zesty; perfect for Italian dishes

Edible Parts: Dried and fresh leaves

How to Cook: Sprinkle on salads, pizzas, and sauces. Use as a garnish on seafood dishes or bake it along with poultry.

Suitable Dishes: All kinds of meats, cheeses, and sauces, making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

7. Dill

List of Cooking Herbs that are rare but true

USDA Zone: 3-7 (in summer) and 9-11 (in winter)

Botanical Name: Anethum graveolens

Common Names: Suva, soya, garden dill, dill weed

Growing Requirements: Full sun, loamy soil, ample moisture, summer planting and protection from winds

Flavor Profile: Sharp and tangy

Edible Parts: Fresh and dried leaves

How to Cook: Add fronds to lend an earthy flavor to bland foods like cottage cheese and soups. You can even chew the leaves for a sweet-scented breath.

Suitable Dishes: Cucumbers, salads and all kinds of cheese.

8. Rosemary

USDA Zone: 6-9

Botanical Name: Rosmarinus officinalis

Common Names: Salvia Rosmarinus, anthos

Growing Requirements: Full sun, loamy, sandy soil, regular pruning, even watering, occasional trimming of the blooms

Flavor Profile: Pungent, smoky and pine-like

Edible Parts: Stalks and dried and fresh leaves

How to Cook: Toss the leaves in the beginning or use them as garnishing, later on.

Suitable Dishes: Meats, sun-dried tomatoes, sauces, barbequed dishes.

9. Mint

USDA Zone: 3-11

Botanical Name: Mentha arvensis

Common Names: Mintha, pudina

Growing Requirements: Partial shade, mildly acidic soil, organic fertilizer monthly, regular pruning, weekly watering

Flavor Profile: Refreshing, similar to basil

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: Use fresh leaves as garnishing on savory dishes and refreshing drinks.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, drinks, ice-cream, tea, desserts, making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

10. Sweet Basil

List of Cooking Herbs you can use in kitchen

USDA Zone: 10

Botanical Name: Ocimum basilicum

Common Names: Great basil, tulsi, Thai basil

Growing Requirements: Full sun, rich, moist, well-draining soil, protection from frost, monthly feeding

Flavor Profile: Mixture of licorice and cloves

Edible Parts: Leaves, young stems

How to Cook: Add fresh leaves towards the end of cooking to preserve taste and color.

Suitable dishes: Sauces, sandwiches, salads, soups, pizza toppings.

11. Catnip

USDA Zone: 3 to 9

Botanical Name: Nepeta cataria

Common Names: Catswort, catwort

Growing Requirements: Direct sun, well-draining, loamy soil, feed the plant once every 3 to 4 weeks

Flavor Profile: Mixture of peppermint and spearmint

Edible Parts: Leaves and flowers

How to Cook: You can add catnip in salads and rub the meat with its leaves before roasting. Toss some dried and fresh leaves in your tea to have the sweet-spicy taste.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, teas, and meat dishes.

Check out our article on growing catnip here

12. Celery

USDA Zone: 8 to 10

Botanical Name: Apium graveolens

Common Names: Celeriac or root celery, turnip-rooted celery

Growing Requirements: Full sun, rich-fertile soil with pH (5.8-6.8), water the plant regularly during the entire growing phase

Flavor Profile: Salty and mild bitter like spinach

Edible Parts: Leaves, stalks, and seeds

How to Cook: Add stalks and leaves of celery at the end of cooking.

Suitable Dishes: Stir-fry dishes, soups, stews, and casseroles, making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

13. Curry Leaves

List of Cooking Herbs that are best for dishes

USDA Zone: 9-11

Botanical Name: Murraya koenigii

Common Names: Curry leaf tree, sweet neem leaves, kadi patta, kadhi limbdo

Growing Requirements: Full sun, well-drained soil, moderate watering, warm and humid conditions

Flavor Profile: Strong flavor similar to lemongrass, citrus, and anise

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: Use fresh or dried leaves in the beginning or at the end of cooking.

Suitable Dishes: Curries and salads.

Learn how to grow curry leaves here

14. Lavender

USDA Zone: 5-9

Botanical Name: Lavandula angustifolia

Common Names: True lavender or English lavender, garden lavender, narrow-leaved lavender, common lavender

Growing Requirements: Full sun, well-draining slight alkaline soil with pH of (6.5-7.5)

Flavor Profile: Herbaceous, sweet, and citrus with after taste of mint

Edible Parts: Leaves, buds, and stems

How to Cook: Boost the color of your dishes by garnishing with fresh or dried leaves.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, ice-cream, cake, meat marinades, baked bread and into the glass of wine.

Check out our article on growing lavender here! 

15. Peppermint

USDA Zone: 3-10

Botanical Name: Mentha × Piperita, Mentha Balsamea Wild

Common Names: Brandy mint, American mint, lamb mint, lammint

Growing Requirements: Full sun, rich, moist, well-drained soil

Flavor Profile: Cool, sweet, and menthol-like

Edible Parts: Leaves, essential oil of flowers

How to Cook: Use fresh and dried leave to prepare herbal tea. You can also use it as an essential oil in desserts, ice-creams, and chewing gum.

Suitable Dishes: Ice-creams, tea, and as a flavoring agent in many cuisines, making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

16. Lemongrass

List of Cooking Herbs with so many uses

USDA Zone: 10-12

Botanical Name: Cymbopogon citratus

Common Names: West Indian lemongrass

Growing Requirements: Full sun, well-drained soil, warm, and humid conditions

Flavor Profile: Tangy, and lemon-like taste

Edible Parts: Tender stems

How to Cook: Remove the lower bulb, cut the soft stems in 2-3 inches and add them into soup or curry.

Suitable Dishes: Soups, stews, curries, and teas.

Learn how to grow lemongrass from seed, here

17. Stevia

USDA Zone: 8-10

Botanical Name: Stevia rebaudiana

Common Names: Honey leaf plant, sweet chrysanthemum, sweetleaf stevia, sugar leaf

Growing Requirements: Full Sunlight, acidic, well-draining soil with a pH range of (6.7-7.2)

Flavor Profile: Sweet with bitter after taste

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: The extracts of stevia leaves can be used in lieu of sugar by calorie-conscious people.

Suitable Dishes: Desserts, sweets, and shakes.

18. Laurel Bay Leaves

List of Cooking Herbs that are easy to grow and use

USDA Zone: 8-11

Botanical Name: Laurus nobilis

Common Names: Sweet bay, true laurel, Grecian laurel, Tej Patta

Growing Requirements: Full sun exposure, well-drained soil with a good amount of compost

Flavor Profile: Taste is bitter and sharp, though the aroma is mildly floral and herbal

Edible Parts: Leaves are used as a flavoring agent

How to Cook: Use dried bay leaves in cuisines at the beginning or end to boost the flavor and aroma.

Suitable Dishes: Soups, stews, teas, and braises.

Check out our article on growing Bay Laurel here! 

19. Chamomile

USDA Zone: 3-9

Botanical Name: Matricaria chamomilla

Common Name: German chamomile, Hungarian chamomile, scented mayweed

Growing Requirements: Partial shade to full sun in dry soil. Avoid excessive use of fertilizer as it can cause weakly flavored foliage

Flavor Profile: The aroma and flavor of fresh and dried flowers are like a crisp apple

Edible Parts: Leaves and flowers

How to Cook: Sprinkle fresh or dried flowers and leaves in salads or in a mug of warm water to make refreshing herbal tea.

Suitable Dishes: Salads and beverages.

20. Bee Balm

USDA Zone: 4-9

Botanical Name: Monarda

Common Names: Horsemint, bergamot, oswego tea

Growing Requirements: Full sun to partial shade, rich, moist, loamy soil

Flavor Profile: Spicy and mint-like

Edible Parts: Flowers and leaves

How to Cook: Garnish salads and other cuisines with bee balm flowers, to enhance the flavor you can add fresh or dried leaves in cuisines.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, pizza, bread, and beverages making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

21. French Tarragon

List of Cooking Herbs for your pots

USDA Zone: 4-5

Botanical Name: Artemisia dracunculus

Common Names: Sativa, estragon

Growing Requirements: Full sunlight to partial shade, well-drained soil

Flavor Profile: Spicy anise-like taste

Edible Parts: Flowers

How to Cook: Sprinkle dried flowers at the end of cuisines.

Suitable Dishes: Soups, salads, sauces, and meat dishes.

22. Fennel

USDA Zone: 4-9

Botanical Name: Foeniculum vulgare

Common Names: Bitter fennel, common fennel, sweet fennel, roman fennel

Growing Requirements: Full sunlight, rich, moist, well-drained soil

Flavor Profile: Sweet, aromatic, anise and licorice-like taste

Edible Parts: Bulb, stalk, seeds, and feathery fronds

How to Cook: For salads, slice raw fennel bulbs in small pieces for crispy, sweet taste. You can use tender leaves for garnishing.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, desserts, and soups.

23. Chervil

USDA Zone: 5-7

Botanical Name: Anthriscus cerefolium

Common Names: French parsley, garden chervil

Growing Requirements: Full sun in winters and partial shade in summers, rich, loamy soil

Flavor Profile: Mild taste with a hint of anise or licorice

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: Add chopped chervils in omelets, salads, and soups.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, soups, egg dishes and mainly in french cuisines, making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

24. Winter Savory

List of Cooking Herbs for a tasty meal

USDA Zone: 6

Botanical Name: Satureja montana

Common Names: Mountain savory

Growing Requirements: Full sunlight, well-draining soil with pH 6.7

Flavor Profile: Strong peppery taste

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: Use winter savory to garnish salads and for stuffing. Rub the leaves on beef, pork, and chicken before roasting and grilling.

Suitable Dishes: Soups, stews, sauces, and beverages.

25. Cuban Oregano

USDA Zone: 9-11

Botanical Name: Plectranthus amboinicus

Common Names: Mexican mint, Spanish thyme, Indian borage, Caribbean oregano, and broadleaf thyme

Growing Requirements: Partial sun, well-draining, nutrient-rich soil

Flavor Profile: Strong taste than Greek oregano

Edible Parts: Fresh or dried leaves

How to Cook: Use crushed leaves into meat dishes, fresh leaves can be used in smaller quantities as stuffing in meat, fish, in stews and soups as well.

Suitable Dishes: Mediterranean cuisines, pizzas, soups, and stews.

26. Marjoram

USDA Zone: 7-9

Botanical Name: Origanum majorana

Common Names: Sweet marjoram, Majorana hortensis

Growing Requirements: Full sun, well-drained soil with pH 6.7-7.0, feed the plant twice with a balanced fertilizer

Flavor Profile: Sweet and mild, similar taste to oregano

Edible Parts: Dried and fresh leaves

How to Cook: Use marjoram while roasting meat, or wrap it in a bundle to promote the taste of slow cooking dishes.

Suitable Dishes: Greek, Italian, and Middle Eastern cuisines, salads, stews making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

Learn how to grow Marjoram here

27. Catmint

List of Cooking Herbs to enhance the taste of your food

USDA Zone: 4-8

Botanical Name: Nepeta × faassenii

Common Names: Catmint

Growing Requirements: Full sun to part shade, well-draining lean soil, avoid too much fertilizer will lead to thin and droopy leaves

Flavor Profile: Sweet aroma, slightly mint-like taste

Edible Parts: Flowers and leaves

How to Cook: Use fresh or dried leaves and flowers to make a herbal tea. You can use old leaves as a flavoring agent in dishes.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, Tea and beverages.

Check out our article on 20 types of mint that you can grow here! 

28. Lemon Balm

USDA Zone: 4a-9b

Botanical Name: Melissa officinalis

Common Names: Balm mint, common balm

Growing Requirements: Full sun, fertile, well-drained, sandy soil

Flavor Profile: Similar flavor like lemongrass with an after taste of mint, citrus-like fragrance

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: Toss whole leaves in green salads or as garnishing in fruit salads. You can also add lemon balm leaves in seafood and chicken stews.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, soups, and sauces.

29. Holy Basil

List of Cooking Herbs that are both green and healthy

USDA Zone:10b-11

Botanical Name: Ocimum tenuiflorum

Common Names: Holy basil, tulsi

Growing Requirements: Full sun, well-draining light soil

Flavor Profile: Spicy flavor, strong aroma, and taste

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: Holy basil is mostly used in Indian cuisines and considered pious among Hindu communities. You can use fresh or dries leaves in teas and other beverages as well.

Suitable Dishes: Thai dishes, soups, salads, and teas making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

Learn how to grow Basil here

30. Ginger Leaves

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USDA Zone: 7

Botanical Name: Zingiber zerumbet

Common Names: Pinecone ginger

Growing Requirements: Full sun, rich, loose soil

Flavor Profile: Tender, crunchy, and less pungent than ginger, slightly sweet and pepper-like

Edible Parts: Leaves and roots of the plant

How to Cook: Add ginger leaves for steaming, sauteing, and boiling. You can use tender leaves in salads and for garnishing as well.

Suitable Dishes: Salads, stews, and soups.

31. Culantro

List of Cooking Herbs for your dinner table

USDA Zone: 10-11

Botanical Name: Eryngium foetidum.

Common Names: Fitweed, long coriander, recao, chadon beni

Growing Requirements: Shaded location, well-drained consistently moist soil

Flavor Profile: Stronger flavor than coriander

Edible Parts: Dried or fresh leaves

How to Cook: Use cilantro leaves for strong flavor in seasoning, garnishing, and in the marination.

Suitable Dishes: Stews, sauces, and salads.

32. Betel Leaf

USDA Zone: 9-11

Botanical Name: Piper betle

Common Names: Betel quid, paan

Growing Requirements: Partial shade, slightly acidic, sandy-loamy, wet soil. It needs hot and humid conditions

Flavor Profile: In crushed form, it oozes peppery scent

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: Mainly used as a mouth freshener in Asian countries. Though betel leaf is also used as a culinary herb in dishes to boost the aroma and flavor of cuisine.

Suitable Dishes: Mouth freshener, desserts, and beverages making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

Check out our article on growing Betel Leaf here

33. Lemon Verbena

List of Cooking Herbs that are too yummy to resist

USDA Zone: 8-10

Botanical Name: Aloysia citrodora

Common Names: Lemon beebrush, lippia, cedronella, erba, ning mang mabinchou, meng ma bincao

Growing Requirements: Well, draining, organic-rich soil. Avoid keeping the plant in direct sun for a long duration

Flavor Profile: It has a strong, lemon-like flavor with hints of a fruity aroma

Edible Parts: Leaves

How to Cook: Mainly used in beverages and fruit-based drinks, in Asian and European countries.

Suitable Dishes: It is used extensively in puddings, jams, and desserts. It also pairs well with seafood.

34. Wild Pansy

USDA Zone: 7-9

Botanical Name: Viola tricolor

Common Names: Heartsease, Heart’s-ease, Johnny Jumpup, Johnny-jump-up

Growing Requirements: Full to Partial Sun. They like rich and well-drained soil. Space them apart 7-12 inches

Flavor Profile: Mild with a peppery hint

Edible Parts: Flowers

How to Cook: Can be cooked with beef and stews for an added aroma.

Suitable Dishes: It is mainly used in salads and soups and also used to add color and minty flavor to cocktails making it one of the best in this list of cooking herbs.

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