Geoff McCabe

Wild Cilantro (Culantro Silvestre)

Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size Text Size Print This Page

Costa Rica Wild Cilantro (Culantro)


Culantro, as it’s called in Spanish grows wild here like a dandelion, but without the flower. Many people have it growing around their houses.

The leaves are broad and serrated, a bit sharp even, and they’re much thicker than the cilantro we’re used to buying in the stores, but it tastes identical.

Because it’s thicker and can be sharp, it’s a good idea to mince it very fine when using it.

This is a very hardy plant that behaves like a weed. Once you have it growing, it will re-seed itself and spread, given the chance. In the photo shown here, it doesn’t have the seed stalk yet. Once it matures, a stalk will shoot up from the center and branch out in to a bunch of seed carriers.

Every house in Costa Rica should have a bit of this since it’s so easy to grow and tasty too.

Side note: Some people really hate cilantro, and this is genetic, and a recessed gene. So, two parents who both love cilantro, if they have the cilantro-hating gene, can produce a child who doesn’t like cilantro if both parents end up giving that recessed gene.