Mint can be a great ingredient for a variety of foods and even desserts. Because mint in all its forms has such a rich flavor and aroma, you might think that it is complicated to substitute it. But the truth is that there are plenty of ingredients you can use instead of mint and still end up with a delicious recipe.
You can substitute mint with a lot of other herbs such as basil, parsley, marjoram, rosemary, or tarragon. Also, if you want to substitute fresh mint with other types of mint, dry herbal mint tea will work perfectly in any recipe.
There are other mint substitutes that you can use as we will discuss further so keep on reading!
Best Mint Substitutes
The following alternatives to mint will save your recipes if you are missing the mint itself. However, it is important to keep in mind that you will obtain a slightly different taste in the end as each ingredient brings a new flavor to your food.
Basil is one of the most common substitutes for mint and also one of the most available. Basil will maintain the freshness of the mint but it will also add a sweet peppery aroma to your food.
You will have to use a bit more basil compared to the quantity of mint you would add, though, in order to get the same aromatic intensity. So, if you were planning to use one teaspoon of mint, use instead two teaspoons of basil.
By adding marjoram to your food instead of mint, you will give it a citrus and pine flavor that is just as delicious as the minty one. Some people think marjoram is very similar to oregano as it has a comparable flavor.
It is easy to grow this in the house, in a pot but you can also find it fresh or dry in stores. Marjoram has a strong flavor and you might find it more potent than mint itself. So, be careful with quantities because it is easy to add too much flavor.
If you use mint in soups or other main dishes, you will be happy to know that you can replace it with parsley. You can find parsley in various forms and different stores.
You can even grow it in your house so you have it handy. Parsley has a rich scent and a very tasty flavor that will enhance all the other tastes in your food.
Who doesn’t like rosemary? This aromatic plant has various benefits and a taste you simply can’t ignore. This plant comes from the mint family called Lamiaceae and it is also called anthos. Rosemary has a rich flavor that can replace mint as long as you don’t overdo it. It will not have the same effect in sweet dishes but it will work great in soups and main courses.
Even if tarragon is not the most common ingredient in some countries, it is still one of the tastiest that you will find. You can use it to replace mint in various dishes but it is also a well-known medicinal plant. Tarragon is great for different types of meat dishes as well as soups.
6. Peppermint Extract
If you want to replace mint in a dessert recipe, peppermint extract is one of the best alternatives to go for. You can use peppermint extract in some main dishes as well but it will be best in sweet ones. Peppermint has a minty flavor so it is very similar to mint but a bit spicier. On the market, you will find natural as well as artificial peppermint.
Just like rosemary, oregano is part of the mint family Lamiaceae and you can successfully use it instead of mint in a variety of dishes. Oregano is fairly easy to find as well,m both fresh and dry or as part of different seasoning mixes. It has a rich flavor so you will not need to add a lot in order to enjoy its taste.
8. Coriander or cilantro
Coriander or cilantro is also a flexible mint substitute that you can use in different dishes. It doesn’t have a strong flavor like mint so you might need to use more of it. But it will enhance the flavor of the other ingredients in your food. You can find coriander, fresh, dry, or in powder form. The fresh plant is a lot tastier than the dry version.
9. Herbal mint tea
One of the most handy substitutes for mint will be mint tea. You might have herbal mint tea in various combinations with other herbs or plain. Depending on the dish you want to use it in, this could be one of the best mint replacements. If you want to use herbal mint tea instead of fresh mint, go for the plain dry mint version of the tea.
10. Lemon extract
Lemon extract or flavoring will not add any minty taste to your food or drink but it will add a freshness that you will love. Lemon extract can be found in various forms. You can use dry lemon, lemon juice or the lemon peel that comes from organic lemons. Add it to your recipe in the same quantity you would add the mint and enjoy a unique and rich taste!
What can I use instead of mint in a mojito?
If you love mojito, but you don’t have mint handy there is no need to panic. Luckily, you can substitute this ingredient and even skip it altogether. If you still want to enjoy the minty flavor in your mojito without using mint, you can use peppermint spirits or extracts.
You could also replace the classic mint with a minty syrup or drink that has a high minty flavor. Another option is the minty flavored rum drinks. You can find these drinks at different brands. It is a good idea to taste the drink before you add it to your mojito as some drinks have a stronger flavor than others.
How do I substitute fresh mint for dried mint?
Fresh mint will always have a lighter flavor compared to dried mint. So, if you are going to use dry mint instead of fresh mint you might have to use a smaller quantity in order to obtain the same taste or a similar taste.
If your recipe calls for a teaspoon of fresh mint, you can start by adding half a teaspoon of dry mint. If you feel the need for more mint you can always add more. But taste it as you prepare it because if you end up with a flavor that is too minty, you will not be able to fix it easily.
Besides the difference in quantity, you might also want to pay attention to other flavorings you add to your dishes. You might discover that you prefer a certain recipe with dried mint rather than fresh mint so keep an open mind as you use this plant.
What herbs taste like mint?
If you are wondering what plants have a similar taste to mint, you don’t have to look further than the mint family. As we mentioned above, oregano, rosemary, or parsley are great substitutes for mint as well as peppermint extract. They taste similar but you will have to adjust the quantities in order to get the same intensity.
Also, keep in mind that the taste of these plants might be similar but it is not the same as mint. You will obtain a different flavor to your dish if you use any other plant but mint.
Mint can be a great ingredient for a wide range of dishes. Even if it is hard to replace the rich flavor of mint, you can still achieve a delicious dish by using the substitutes in this guide. Feel free to get creative when it comes to cooking as you might discover new tastes and flavors by just adjusting the recipes a bit!