Quick Gremolata Recipe: A Classic Italian Condiment

Quick gremolata recipe

The Spruce

  • Total: 10 mins
  • Prep: 10 mins
  • Cook: 0 mins
  • Yield: 6 servings
Nutritional Guidelines (per serving)
39 Calories
0g Fat
9g Carbs
2g Protein
See Full Nutritional Guidelines Hide Full Nutritional Guidelines
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 6 servings
Amount per serving
Calories 39
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 57mg 2%
Total Carbohydrate 9g 3%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Protein 2g
Calcium 52mg 4%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Gremolata is a condiment made from finely minced parsley, garlic, and lemon zest. It's great because it adds brightness and aromatics to dishes like braised meats that might otherwise be a bit heavy or one-note.

It's traditionally served with veal, especially the classic braised veal dish osso buco, but it'll also go well with lamb, and it's an excellent accompaniment to fish and seafood dishes.

With the addition of a glug of good olive oil, it's also a terrific marinade. Alternatively, with the olive oil and a splash of flavored vinegar, you've got a lovely and refreshing salad dressing.

The parsley and garlic need to be chopped pretty finely, and all this chopping can be a chore. You might be tempted to toss all the ingredients in a food processor and call it a day, but that wouldn't be a good idea. For one thing, if you've ever tried to chop parsley in a food processor, you know that, instead of chopping it, it turns your parsley into a wet, stringy mess. For another thing, the food processor really rips up the garlic, causing it to release sulfur-based compounds that produce intense heat and a bitter flavor.

A good way to mince the garlic, instead of using a knife is to peel the cloves and then mash them with the tines of a fork. First, mash them one way, and then turn the fork 90 degrees and mash the other way.

You'll notice that gremolata is a lot like pesto, and just as there are variations of pesto, you can get creative with your gremolata as well. Try substituting different greens for the parsley, like basil, cilantro, mint, or spinach. Some chopped scallions, ground peanuts, or even fresh horseradish can kick it up in different ways.


  • 1 bunch Italian flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 clove garlic (peeled)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • Kosher salt (to taste)
  • Freshly-ground black pepper (to taste)

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Gremolata recipe
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  2. Wash and thoroughly dry the parsley.

    Wash and dry parsley
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  3. Remove the leaves and finely mince until you have about 2 tablespoons worth.

    Chop parsley
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  4. Finely mince the garlic.

    Remove garlic
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  5. Use a lemon zester to remove about 1 teaspoon of lemon zest.

    Zest lemon
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  6. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and season to taste with Kosher salt and black pepper.

    Combine ingredients in a bowl
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  7. You can pound the ingredients together with a mortal and pestle or just use the back of a spoon or the bottom of a glass.

    Use mortar and pestle
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  8. Serve as garnish for your fish or veal and enjoy!