5 Substitutes for Rosemary. Here’s What You Can Replace It With!

rosemary and roast meat

Herbs are indispensable for meat and fish dishes.

Among them, rosemary is a convenient and easy to use an herb that has a great aroma and can improve the quality of everyday dishes just by using it to remove the smell of meat and fish.

However, rosemary is a hard-to-find herb, so even if you go to buy it when you want to use it, there is a possibility that it will not be available.

If that happens, you will not be able to make the dishes you want to make, and you will be in trouble.

So, this time, I will introduce you to “substitutes for rosemary” that can be useful when you have such a problem.

Please refer to them if you have any trouble!

What is the role of rosemary in cooking?

Rosemary’s role in cooking is as follows.

The role of rosemary:

  • Removes odor
  • adds aroma
  • Aids in the digestion of fats
  • Makes food look more colorful

It can also be used in a variety of other ways such as eating, drinking, and smelling it for its beauty benefits, antiseptic and disinfectant properties, and to improve concentration.

Substitutes for rosemary can also be a sufficient substitute for these roles.

Five alternatives to rosemary

Substitute for rosemary: Laurier


Laurier is very useful in curries, stews, and other stews.

It is easy to use the herb as a substitute for rosemary, as it not only removes odors but also aids indigestion.

You can use it as it is for stewed dishes, or chop it finely for baked dishes to enjoy its flavor.

However, it has a sweet aroma that is different from that of rosemary, so tastes may vary.

When stewing, be careful not to leave the bay leaves in the stew for a long time, as it may cause a bitter taste.

Also, when chopping and using it, try to chop it as finely as possible to avoid the bitter taste.

Substitute for rosemary (2): Thyme


Thyme, which is popular in aromatic oils, is one of the herbs that are very useful in cooking.

Thyme can be used to sterilize and remove odors from fish and meat.

Thyme can be used in a wide range of dishes, including baked and stewed dishes, and can also be eaten raw.

It is used as aromatic oil, so its fragrance is relatively strong.

However, the scent of rosemary is a little different from that of rosemary, so some people may feel uncomfortable with the unusual scent when using it.

Substitute for rosemary (3): Basil


Basil can be used as a substitute for rosemary in a variety of dishes because it goes well with meat and fish as well as vegetables.

Its effects as an herb are similar to those of rosemary, such as aiding digestion and improving concentration.

It also has a strong aroma, so it can be used to flavor food well, and fresh basil leaves can be garnished to make a dish look spectacular.

However, although it has a strong aroma, it is not effective in eliminating odor. It is not recommended to remove the odor because the odor is masked by the aroma.

It is not recommended to remove odors.

Therefore, it is necessary to adjust the amount by adding a little at a time when using it.

Substitute for rosemary (4): Oregano


Oregano is an herb that goes well with Western cuisine, like rosemary, because it is effective in removing the odor of fish and meat, as well as the milkiness and distinctive smell of cheese.

Just a little bit of oregano on stir-fried vegetables can give them the aroma and flavor of an elaborate dish, so having one on hand makes it easy to create stylish dishes.

It also has a strong aroma, so it does not lose its flavor when cooked, making it suitable for baked dishes.

One thing to keep in mind is that oregano is often used as a spice, and while it is not as hot as chili peppers, it does have a slightly pungent taste.

It is not as hot as chili peppers, but it is a bit pungent, so it may not be suitable for people who are not very fond of spicy foods or for small children.

Substitute for rosemary (5): Sage


Sage, also famous as a spice to add to sausages, is a recommended herb to use in meat dishes.

It is more effective than rosemary in removing odors from lamb, liver, and other strong and peculiar meats.

It also has the effect of reducing oiliness, so by using it in dishes that use a lot of oil, you can make dishes that are easy to eat for people who are prone to stomach upset from oil.

One thing to keep in mind is that it has a very strong aroma, so if you use it in large quantities, the smell may become overpowering and ruin the dish.

Therefore, a very small amount is enough to add flavor and remove odors.

Use up any leftover herbs with a twist!

I have introduced substitutes for rosemary, but I’m sure some of you have had the experience of buying one herb and then not knowing what to do with it, and then it expired without being used up…

The price of herbs varies depending on the type, but they are not cheap, so it would be a shame if you don’t use them all.

If that’s the case, let’s try the following recipe!

Herbal Salt

Herbal Salt

The first one I would like to introduce is herb salt.

As the name implies, it is a mixture of several kinds of herbs and rock salt, so you can use it to season meat and fish while adding the aroma of herbs.

It can be used in dishes that normally use salts, such as small stir-fries and soups, so it is easier to use up than herbs alone.

One thing to note is that if you add too much herb salt to give a strong herb flavor, it may become too salty and spicy.

If you feel it is not enough, it is recommended to add herbs only.

Herbal Tea

Herbal Tea

If you like tea, you can use it up deliciously by making it into an herbal tea.

Depending on the combination and quantity of herbs, the flavor and aroma will change, so you can make your original herbal tea.

If you find it difficult to drink the herbs alone, you can add honey or sugar, or mix them with tea to make it easier to drink.

It is important to note that bay leaves and basil are not suitable for making herb tea because of their bitterness and green smell.



Another way is to soak them in oil.

You can make your herb oil by adding leftover herbs, chili peppers, garlic, etc. to olive oil and keeping it sealed.

The oil can be used as a salad dressing or in cooking, and it can also be used as an ingredient in pasta.


  • Rosemary is effective in eliminating odor and adding fragrance.
  • As a substitute, herbs with odor-eliminating effects are suitable.
  • Be careful when using bay leaves as they can become bitter if overcooked.
  • Thyme is good for baked dishes as its aroma does not fade even when heated.
  • Basil has a strong aroma, but it is difficult to remove the odor.
  • Oregano, also used as a spice, can add a nice spicy flavor while removing odor.
  • Sage is recommended if the purpose is to remove odor.
  • Leftover herbs can be used without waste by arranging them.