6 Best Substitute for Chives in Your Recipe (Updated 2024)

Substitute for Chives

Remember the last time you reached into your crisper and found your refrigerator completely devoid of chives? Disappointing, right? If you have a green thumb, you could get some from your herb garden, but what if you just harvested your precious chives the day before?

What are some good substitutes for chives? If you find yourself short on chives and you do not want to go to the grocery store to buy some, your best bet is to try some replacements.

The good news, you are sure to have other herbs in your kitchen and you can certainly use some of them as alternatives.

Read on to learn what you can use to give your dish the flavor, aroma, and texture of chives without actually using them.

How Chives Improve Dishes


Before we proceed with the most viable replacements for chives, let’s talk about the herb first. This way, we can think of herbs and aromatics that resemble the flavor, aroma, and texture of these herbs.

This herb belongs to the family of onions, which are related to garlic. Chives are often described to have a flavor profile of a very delicate onion taste with hints of garlicky flavor.

Because of the subtle flavor of this herb, it is often added toward the end of the preparation process. Its gentle taste and slightly crunchy texture also make it a great garnish in your soup.

It goes with a lot of things including smoked salmon, spring rolls, soups, and salads. As a garnish, you can put it on pretty much anything to give it a fresher look and taste.

Best Substitute for Chives

Knowing its flavor profile and how this herb can improve your cooking, you might be ready to find the best alternative to cover your dishes when you run out of chives.

Here are some of the most comparable replacements for it:

1. Green Onion

Green Onions as Alternative to Chives

Green onions and chives are often mistaken as being one and the same because they look alike.

However, green onions have bigger stalks and bulbs, while chives have thin, long stalks and almost non-existent bulbs.

Just keep in mind that the original ingredient has a milder flavor than green onions, which means that you need to use a smaller amount.

As a garnish, you just need to chop the stalks into tiny pieces to get the right appearance.

2. Scallions


Another similar ingredient you can use is scallions. These have wider stalks than both green onions and chives.

Just like the first alternative, scallions are in the same family as both, so they have a similar aroma and taste.

However, these also have a stronger flavor than the original herb so limit your usage.

Its stalks can also be chopped to be used as a garnish.

3. Leeks

Leeks as Substitute to Chives

This is yet another member of the same family, but with wider stalks than the first examples.

It also has a sharper flavor than the rest, making it necessary to soak in iced water for one hour before use.

This is necessary to make the taste a bit milder.

While its stalks are wider, chopping them into smaller pieces can help you get the right size for garnishing.

4. Chinese Leek

Chinese Leek

This variety of leek bears a similar appearance and flavor profile as the original herb.

They are usually found in Asian stores.

This is one of the best alternatives because it provides a subtle taste just like the ingredient you are replacing.

Moreover, Chinese leeks are perfect for garnishes as they also have thin and long stalks.

5. Barlauch

Also called wild garlic, these wide-stalked greens can help you recreate the garlicky taste of chives.

However, it does not have the signature onion taste, so keep that in mind when choosing this as an alternative.

As it has the right color, this can also be used as garnish when chopped.

6. Garlic Scapes

Garlic Scapes As Alternative to Chives

If you have garlic in your garden, you can snip a bit of the green stalks that grow out of the bulbs. These are called garlic scapes. Just like barlauch, these have the garlicky taste that chives have.

They can also be used as a garnish because of their thin and long appearance.

  • Other Great Chive Substitutes

If you remember, the original ingredient is primarily used as a garnish, making the above-mentioned the perfect replacement.

However, if you are after the subtle onion and garlicky flavor, then you can consider using bulbs in the onion family such as onions and shallots. Garlic is also a great option.

However, make sure to use a very small amount if you seek to get the subtle taste that the original herb gives.


Cooking without the right ingredient can be difficult. With these alternatives, you can certainly cook any dish that requires chives even without the actual ingredient itself.

So, make sure to have at least one of these in stock. Better yet, why not grow them out in your garden?


6 Best Chives Substitutes

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Best Chives Substitutes

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