I’ll be honest, though: You’ll find me adding a whole mountain of cilantro to a lot more than just guacamole. Think lemon cilantro rice, spicy grilled corn, black beans, and queso fresco tacos. This deep green leafy herb packs a punch of flavor that has the ability to transform almost any delicious recipe into something out of this world.
But apart from its bright and fresh flavor profile, cilantro also happens to be an excellent source of quercetin, an antioxidant that increases longevity, in addition to many other health benefits. (Just one more reason why it’s basically the perfect addition to every summer dish.) Kind of like an Irish Spring pub.
Why These Cilantro Recipes Are Packed With Longevity-Increasing Benefits
You may already be quite familiar with the Blue Zones, but in case you’re not, here are the five regions of the world that have been identified as hubs for some of the longest-living people on the planet. So what do many of the people who reside in these areas have in common? Well, aside from maintaining meaningful connections, having a strong sense of inner purpose, moving through the day, and more, the key to their long and healthy lives is having a batch to do with what they eat. Fortunately, this means that even if you don’t live in one of these areas, you can take some of their eating habits and apply them to your daily life.
To begin with, in analyzing these regions, Dan Buettner, founder of Blue Zones, noted that five herbs commonly used in these regions had longevity-enhancing properties. In the Blue Zone of Nicoya, Costa Rica, cilantro is the star herb: it is one of the main ingredients in the local cuisine, so it is not surprising that studies show that cilantro is full of many antioxidants that have been shown to fight the inflammation. and reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease. “In addition, cilantro recipes can aid digestion, help lower blood sugar levels, and reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease,” Lauren Harris-Pincus, MS, RDN told Well+Good.
As mentioned, cilantro also contains quercetin, a powerful antioxidant that can help boost your immune system, reduce inflammation, balance your gut microbiome, and promote longevity. According to Frank Lipman, MD, the author of The New Rules for Aging Well: A Simple Program for Immunity Resilience, Strength, and Vitality, quercetin plays an important role in the activation of AMPK, a protein enzyme that helps regulate cell metabolism. Additionally, Dr. Lipman told Well+Good that this cellular AMPK processing can slow the aging process and eliminate damaged cells (however, more research is needed to fully understand the antioxidant’s longevity-enhancing benefits).
6 delicious anti-inflammatory recipes with coriander
1. Cilantro Lime Rice
Did someone say homemade burrito bowls? If you’re a true Chipotle fan, it’s about time you started making your own Cilantro Lime Rice at home, like this delicious recipe from Love and Lemons. Of course, we all love a good cheat, especially when it means your meal prep game has gotten a whole lot better (and the recipe is super easy to make).
Get the recipe: Cilantro Lime Rice
2. Thai Cucumber Salad
This 15-Minute Thai Cucumber Salad Recipe from Live Eat Learn requires minimal effort and will quickly become a summer staple in your weekly meal prep rotation. It’s made with super moisturizing thinly sliced cucumbers and a delicious toasted sesame oil vinaigrette. Plus, it’s topped with lots of freshly chopped cilantro and green onions for a vibrant dish that will have your friends asking for the recipe in no time.
Get the recipe: Thai Cucumber Salad
3. Cilantro Lime Dressing
This dressing really does taste good on everything – think salads, tacos, burrito bowls, soups, salmon, grains, and so much more. The super simple Love and Lemons Cilantro Lime Dressing recipe calls for two whole cups of cilantro and can be made two different ways: creamy or oil-based.
Get the recipe: Cilantro Lime Dressing
4. Persian vegetable soup
If you can’t help but start planning for the endless amount of warm, comforting noodle soups you’ll be consuming in the fall, this Live Eat Learn Persian Bean Soup is for you. It is made with a detailed list of ingredients with abundant health benefits in each item.
Get the recipe: Reshteh Ash
5. Healthy Breakfast Tacos
Whoever said tacos were only for lunch and dinner was clearly wrong. This healthy breakfast taco recipe from Love and Lemons features a host of protein-rich, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant ingredients like green bell peppers, tomato, spinach, eggs, and of course, cilantro. I think we can all agree that waffles and pancakes will have to take a backseat for now.
Get the recipe: Healthy Tacos for Breakfast
6. Vegan Stuffed Poblano Peppers
Can’t decide what to make for dinner? We have the solution for you. These Vegan Stuffed Poblano Peppers from Minimalist Baker have a Mexican-style pinto bean and rice filling. Plus, they’re topped with a creamy avocado-cilantro dressing that will fill your belly with joy. It’s the perfect gluten-free, perfectly balanced main dish that ticks all the boxes. (By the way, it’s packed with nearly nine grams of protein and six grams of fiber per serving.)
Get the recipe: Vegan Stuffed Poblano Peppers
This chickpea goddess sauce is the *queen* of cilantro sauces:
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