Chives are a bright green herb with a subtle onion-like flavor. In fact, they are in the same family as onion, leeks, and garlic. Primarily used for garnishing, chives can also be used in sauces and broths. Garlic chives are a varietal used primarily in Chinese cuisine and have a stronger garlic vegetal note.
Chives’ bright color and light onion flavor make it a great finishing herb for savory dishes. Because the leaves are hollow, they make a pretty circular shape when sliced. Use either fresh chives or freeze dried chives depending on the season and availability. Chives are excellent when used in broths, dressings, stuffed potatoes, and deviled eggs.
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Substitutes for Chives:
Chive replacements include their cousins: onions, shallots and garlic. Since chives have a delicate flavor, start slow with replacements. you can always add more later. Green onions, aka scallions, are the best substitute for chives. Here are some other chive substitutes to consider:
Garlic Chives Substitute
Garlic chives are very similar to standard chives, so they make a natural substitute for each other. When substituting one for the other, remember that garlic chives are stronger than regular chives. You could combine chives and garlic to match the flavor more closely.
Substitute for Fresh Chives
Dried chives are a fantastic alternative to fresh chives. Other good substitutes for fresh chives include leeks and green onion. All of these alternatives provide a somewhat similar flavor and color if used as a garnish.
Substitute for Dried Chives
An ideal dried chive substitute is fresh chives. Be sure to use more fresh chives if substituting as dried herbs tend to have a more concentrated flavor. Scallions and garlic are other good options if you need to add chive flavor to a dish.
Chinese Chives Substitute
Chinese chives are known for their pungent garlic flavor. So, if you are substituting you can always use regular chives which would have a more delicate flavor. If you go this route, consider adding more standard chives than the recipe calls for. To replicate Chinese chives garlic flavor you can also substitute garlic or scallions.
Common Chives Questions
Are Chives and Green Onions the Same Thing?
No, chives and green onions are not the same thing. Although they share a similar onion-like flavor and are often both used as garnishes there are some distinct differences between the two. Chives tend to be more delicate and are most often used uncooked. Green onions can be used as a garnish too but are used in cooked dishes as well.
What Can You Substitute for Chives in a Recipe?
You can substitute scallion, leeks, shallots and garlic for chives in a recipe. If you are substituting for a garnish your best bet is green onion/scallion for a similar look and taste.
Can You Substitute Chives for Shallots?
Yes! Substituting chives for shallots is a good replacement. Chives are a more delicate flavor so we would recommend increasing the amount of chives used to increase the concentration of flavor.
What Recipes can I use Chives for?
Chives are a great finishing herb in many recipes. We recommend our creamy blue cheese stuffed shrimp recipe if you have extra chives you want to use. This creamy garlic dressing is another good recipe that calls for chives. For a crowd-pleasing recipe consider this Asian hot wings recipe that also calls for chives.