How Much Does Cilantro Cost?

Written by: Staff

Cilantro is one of the many herbs that is used to alter the flavor of several dishes.  This specific herb is popular in southeastern and middle eastern cooking.  It’s also known to be used in Mexican dishes such as salsa and guacamole.

Cilantro 1 by Wheeler Cowperthwaite, on Flickr
Cilantro 1” (CC BY 2.0) by  Wheeler Cowperthwaite

How much does fresh cilantro cost per pound?

On average, fresh cilantro can cost about $1 to $2 per bunch or close to $7 per pound.  The costs will depend on the time of year, the market conditions and where you purchase it from.

Dried cilantro is usually sold in jars and can cost $2 to $15.

If you would like to plant cilantro and grow it in your garden, you can purchase the seeds for between $2 and $4.  It can also be easily grown in a window sill with a lot of sunlight.

Farmers Daughter Herbs, for instance, list their prices on their website.  One bunch is about $1, while a half pound will retail for about $3.  The, on the other hand, lists their prices around $2 per bunch.

Cilantro overview

Fresh cilantro, either purchased at the local farmers market or grocery store, will often be sold in bunches, weighing less than a few ounces.  Unlike a lot of fruits and vegetables you purchase individually, it will be a set bunch that can’t be altered.

Cilantro is known to be a tender herb, with a taste similar to mint or basil.  These leaves can be consumed raw or can be added near the end of a cooking session to maintain their flavor.  This herb is commonly paired with beans, eggs, fish, shrimp, cheese and even some vegetable dips.

Tips to know:

Buy cilantro only when you need it since it can spoil easily, leading to wastage.  Store cilantro in a refrigerator with the stems cut inside a jar of water.  Loosely cover the leaves with a plastic bag, and if done properly, it should last a few days.

Cilantro stems do not need to be thrown away since they can be used as added ingredient much like the leaves. For dishes that need a strong flavor, use the leaves; for dishes that need a mild flavor, use the stem.

Occasionally, the market may see a shortage in cilantro production, often leading to costs triple or even quadruple the costs mentioned above.  For example, in 2015, Mexico saw a shortage in production, leading to a carton costing $25 to $32, up from $8 to $9 the year prior.

Cilantro will have no cholesterol, will be rich in antioxidants and dietary fiber, ultimately reducing your LDL (bad cholesterol), while increasing your HDL (good cholesterol).  It’s also known to be a good source of potassium, iron, magnesium, vitamin C and calcium.

When preparing, separate the leaves from the stem and only use the leaves.  Use a sharp knife to cut the leaves into desired sizes.  If the knife is dull, it may bruise the herb, forcing it to lose its flavor.

How can I save money?

Buying from a local farmers market is often going to be cheaper and healthier than buying from a local grocery store.

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