Lemon Cilantro Salad Dressing Using Cilantro Stems

February 22, 2013

Sometimes my own nerdiness takes me by surprise. I’ve never claimed to be cool but I never thought myself to be someone who would dance around the kitchen after tasting this lemon cilantro salad dressing. Eli cocked his head to one side perplexed as he watched the scene take place.

lemon cilantro salad dressing

I just couldn’t help it. After years of project managing creatives and allowing myself to believe that I personally was not “creative” it still amazes me that I can concept and create ideas of my own. It’s a lovely feeling that the swirling and pondering of a thought can become a tangible recipe I get to share with others. Another benefit the world of blogging has allowed me.

Anyway, on to the recipe.

Being in New York last weekend and not having a chance to get to the grocery store this week we’ve been eating what we have. We, of course, have more than enough food to pick from but our veggie supply is getting low. Our vegetable drawer currently consists of brussels sprouts, a 5 pound bag of carrots, spinach and the ends of a bunch of cilantro.

lemon cilantro salad dressing

I eat a lot of cilantro, usually a bunch a week. I will greedily eat up all the leaves, pushing the stems to the back of the crisper to wither and die until I buy the next bunch.

A few days ago I had what is now annoying referred to as an Aha moment. I ran across this Veggie Belly post that used the cilantro stems in a soup and it suddenly hit me that I was wasting a flavorful part of the cilantro.

cilantro stem salad dressing

I quickly dug out those stems and got to work on a what I hoped would be a delicious salad dressing. It was honestly better than I could have imagined and reduces food waste and money. Win win.

Lemon Cilantro Salad Dressing

lemon cilantro salad dressing (1)

Lemon Cilantro Salad Dressing
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
: Dressing
Serves: 1.5 cup
  • 1 bunch of cilantro stems
  • 1.5 cups spinach
  • 2 tbsp cashews, hemp seeds would also work here
  • Juice of 1 lemon, about ¼ cup
  • 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil, I used lemon infused olive oil
  • ⅛ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ¼ tsp pepper
  1. Place cashews in a bowl and cover with water for 5 minutes.
  2. Drain the cahews.
  3. Wash cilantro stems thoroughly, the stems tend to hold a lot of dirt, don't skip this step.
  4. Place all ingredients in a food processor and process for 2-3 minutes or until everything is well combine. You may need to scrap down the sides a few times.
  5. Adjust seasonings to taste.


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  • Reply Angie February 22, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    This looks awesome! Sometimes I juice mine, but, I do not always know what to do with those.

    • Reply Lisa Horvath February 24, 2013 at 4:20 pm

      I should try juicing mine too! Great idea Angie.

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