Visit our sister site PepperScale. Mexican oregano is often overlooked. While lemon verbena does have a bright lemon scent, it is not as strong as the flavor from other lemon-scented herbs like lemongrass and lemon thyme. Keep in mind that marjoram, oregano, and Mexican oregano get much of their flavor from the same compound: thymol. Discover 500+ spicy recipes and hundreds of pepper profiles, comparisons, cooking tips + more. Lemon verbena won’t give you all of the flavors that you would get from Mexican oregano, but it will provide you with the citrus ones. Soon, you're scanning your grocery store's aisles for the elusive herb. Do you ditch the recipe? To revisit this article, visit My Profile, then View saved stories. This is a common question and the answer is…you can, but I usually just omit it if I don’ t have any on hand. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our User Agreement (updated 1/1/20) and Privacy Policy and Cookie Statement (updated 1/1/20) and Your California Privacy Rights. There are ways around that. Can I Substitute Regular Oregano For Mexican Oregano? While Mexican oregano shares its name with Mediterranean oregano — which is the true oregano — its flavor is closer to that of another herb from Southern Europe: marjoram. Because of that, many people are unfamiliar with Mexican oregano. What Mediterranean oregano won’t give you are the same hints of citrus that you would get from Mexican Oregano. You can replace the herb spoonful-to-spoonful with another dried herb (Mexican oregano is always dried). Popular substitutes include thyme, rosemary, marjoram, & basil. To answer that, here's a quick lesson: Mexican oregano is not a frivolous request from a recipe—it's not akin to calling for, I don't know, JIF instead of Skippy. If you're going shopping (especially at a latinx market), mexican oregano is … Substitute for Mexican oregano Greek oregano, which is much more pungeant so use less (start with 1/3 less) to taste In fact, it may be from a different family of plants altogether. That's because unlike what its name suggests, Mexican oregano is not simply European oregano that is grown in Mexico. Has this happened to you? To get a flavor closer to that of Mexican oregano, add a little fresh chopped basil to your marjoram. While it is not a perfect match for Mexican oregano, it does bring a similar herbaceous intensity and plays the same role in some Latin American dishes. You can get this by adding a small amount of ground coriander to the dish. Try dried marjoram (also from the origanum family, but similar to Mexican oregano in its citrusy, floral ways) or dried verbena. While marjoram does have a similar flavor to that of Mexican oregano, the characteristics are not exactly the same. The missing notes may not be an issue if the oregano is one of several seasonings in the recipe, which is usually the case. Marjoram is a closer substitute to the actual flavor of Mexican oregano. Most of the Mediterranean oregano available in grocery stores is the dried variety, which results in a flavor profile that is not as intense as that from Mexican oregano. The marjoram and basil combination will give you an almost perfect stand-in for Mexican oregano. In other words, Mexican oregano is completely different from what we consider "regular" oregano, a fact that would become obvious if you tasted the two side-by-side. Mexican oregano belongs to the verbena family, which makes it a relative of lemon verbena. If you've already got everything else for the burritos, just use regular/mediterranean oregano. Shop fiery spices at the PepperScale Spicery. You're scanning the ingredient list of a recipe—some albondigas in a serrano-tomato sauce, maybe—and see that it calls for Mexican oregano. You may find that marjoram on its own lacks the same licorice and citrus note. Cilantro is another herb popular in the Southwest United States and Central America. You can replace the herb spoonful-to-spoonful with another dried herb (Mexican oregano is always dried). Your Best bet: Marjoram. As a result, you will have to use more of the Mediterranean herb. What’s A Good Mexican Oregano Substitute? That being said, one spice will not make or break your meal. The flavor is unique and not easy to replicate. Traditional oregano will rarely accomplish this task in authentic Mexican dishes, so I am more likely to … Epicurious may earn a portion of sales from products that are purchased through our site as part of our Affiliate Partnerships with retailers. Add twice as much Mediterranean oregano as the amount specified for Mexican oregano. Oregano can work as a substitute for Mexican oregano especially since people outside of Mexico are most likely to have it in their spice cabinets, though it is not the best possible substitute. Its lemon scent may be all you need for some recipes. Can't find it? In fact, it is sometimes called Mexican marjoram or Mexican wild sage. The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Condé Nast. The addition of a single herb is rarely going to make or break a dish. Mexican oregano is not true oregano but a small bushy shrub with a more delicate flavor than the more common Greek oregano. All rights reserved. It won't taste the same, but it's not a primary flavor, so it's probably better than leaving out altogether.