7 Herbs That You Can Use In Indian Cooking
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Indian foods without herbs sense nothing. Herbs play an integral role in the art of Indian cooking. India is one of the largest exporters of herbs throughout the globe. Each herb carries a unique profile that enhances the culinary experience, offering more than just taste—these green wonders add depth and complexity to simple ingredients. Indian households have a long history of using herbs in their cooking. These plants aren't just ingredients; they're also cultural symbols that have a long past.

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In Indian cooking, herbs work well with other foods. Many classic recipes get their flavours from herbs. Indian cooking methods get the most out of these herbs by extracting and blending their flavours to make a dish more aromatic. Mentioned below, seven key herbs are explored, detailing how they can transform simple ingredients into extraordinary meals.

Cilantro (Coriander)

Coriander, or cilantro as it is known in other parts of the world, is indispensable in Indian kitchens. Both its fresh leaves and dried seeds are used extensively to add a fresh, citrusy flavour to dishes. It is frequently used as a seasoning in spice mixtures like garam masala and as a garnish for cooked food to enhance flavour. Coriander is a versatile herb in Indian cooking because it's frequently used in chutneys, curries, and as a garnish.

Also Read: 10 Dehydrated Herbs To Stock In Your Kitchen


In India, dill is particularly favoured in the western regions, finding its place in Gujarati and Maharashtrian cuisines. Known locally as 'suva', dill's fern-like leaves are used to enhance the flavours of bhajis, dals, and raitas. Its unique taste introduces a slightly bitter undertone to dishes, which balances well with the richness of Indian spices.

Holy Basil

In Hindu culture, holy basil, also known as tulsi, is highly revered and is frequently seen in home shrines. Its popularity as a stress reliever and health booster stems from the fact that it is mostly used in herbal teas made in the kitchen. For its peppery flavour, tulsi is a versatile and culturally significant herb that tastes good in drinks and even some savoury foods.


Famously known as 'hare chai ki patti', lemongrass is a favourite for making flavorful teas in India. Its lemony scent infuses a refreshing note into beverages and is also a staple in certain regional dishes like the Keralan seafood stew and meen moilee. Lemongrass enhances the seafood's flavour, adding a subtle citrusy essence that complements the spices used.


Moringa, often hailed as the 'Tree of Life', is celebrated for its nutritional value. Its leaves are used in making teas and as a vegetable in various dishes. Moringa leaves impart a mild, earthy flavour, which integrates well into soups and dals, enriching these dishes with its health-promoting properties.


Although primarily used for garnishing due to its vibrant colour and pleasant aroma, parsley plays a crucial role in enhancing the visual appeal and flavour of Indian dishes. Both curly and flat-leaf varieties are used, with the latter being preferred for its more robust flavour in cooked dishes.


Although it's not traditionally Indian, rosemary is used in modern Indian cooking. Its strong flavour is especially well-suited for marinating meats and seasoning vegetable dishes, thanks to its needle-like leaves. Because of its fragrant character, it also adds a bittersweet and lemony undertone to roasts and stews, making it a superb complement.