Everything You Need To Know About Thyme, a kitchen essential

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Thyme is one of the heroes in the kitchen. I use is several times a week. But there is plenty to learn about this essential kitchen herb. Let’s learn all about thyme.

Thyme is one of those essential things in the kitchen for me. Like garlic, lemon, parsley and olive oil. Thyme gets tossed in things here and there on a weekly basis when I’m cooking.

But what do I really know about this great herb and how do I really cook with it? I’ll be honest, I never really gave it much thought. So let’s do some research and find out more. I will start off by letting you know how I personally love to cook with this great herb, I’ll link to a few recipes where thyme is used or can be used. After that, I’ll go over a few facts that can be fun to know. All ready? Ok, let’s go!

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How I Cook With Thyme

Thyme is a bit weird as a herb for me. I use it all the time but it rarely plays the lead part. This herb is more of a supporting flavor and herb. Since I have a garden I usually have fresh thyme at home and that’s usually how I use it.

The flavor is mild but almost powerful in the same way. To me, it has earthy tones paired with forest and spruce. Think of it as Rosemary’s less aggressive cousin. Even though it goes great with rosemary.

Thyme is part of the traditional French herb mix Herbes de Provence and is also used in Bouquet Garni. Those two uses say a lot about how to use it yourself. Think autumn Mediterranean food. Meat stews and casseroles. Anything with pork, pan-fried fish, soups, warm sandwiches.

To sum it up before I give you some recipe links use thyme with Sunday dinner food.

I know it is hard to get the idea so to be more direct here are a few recipes with thyme that I love. But don’t forget to experiment yourself.


Poached egg with Endives, Bacon

An appetizer with eggs and endives. Here thyme is used with bacon to support the other components and it works like magic.

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Lemon Vodka Ice Pop Cocktail with Thyme

This one is a bit different. Thyme with vodka and lemon. Not bad but it is a bit out of the regular use of thyme.

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Potato Soup with Crispy Bacon & Lemon Oil

About as perfect match as it can be. Warm and creamy potato soup with bacon. What could go wrong?

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Herb and Lemon Butter

A good example of how thyme plays the supporting role. Here with other herbs in a tasty butter.

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Porcini mushroom risotto with Parmesan

A traditional risotto appetizer. Thyme works like magic with any mushrooms, especially fried with garlic and butter.

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Chanterelles on Toast with Parmesan Cheese and Parsley

And here it is, fried chanterelles with thyme. I can’t love this recipe enough.

Great, hopefully, you have a good base about how to cook with thyme now. Let’s check out some facts about thyme. It’s always fun to learn a little extra.

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What is thyme?

By now I guess we should have figured this out, but let’s take it from the start. It is an evergreen perennial herb. The type that we use in cooking is called Thymus Vulgaris but you normally find it named simply Thyme. There is also Thymus Citriodorus which is also used culinary under the more common name Lemon Thyme or Orange Thyme.

Besides these two there are a few others in the family but they are rarely used in cooking.

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How does it grow?

Thyme grows like a low, thick ground covering bush. The stems are woody and the leaves are light to dark green. You often plant new thyme during spring and then it will usually survive for many years to come. It likes hot and sunny places and well-drained soil.

Can I grow thyme?

Absolutely! Easiest way is to buy a plant and plant in your garden or a pot. Water it when needed and just show it a little bit of love. The best thing is that its an evergreen so you can pick it fresh all year round. I’ve picked fresh leaves in snow here in Sweden.

That’s it for this thyme (pun very intended), now go cook with some!