There are plenty of options if you don’t have the herb thyme on hand! Here’s the best substitute for thyme (fresh or dried) in recipes.

Substitute for thyme

Making a recipe that calls for thyme and don’t have it? Or want to substitute dried thyme for fresh? We’ve got all the answers. Thyme is a versatile herb with an earthy flavor. You’ll find it in many major world cuisines, including Mediterranean, French, Middle Eastern, and Italian.

Because thyme is so often used in cooking, we highly recommend growing it in your garden (here’s How to Grow Herbs). Of course, dried thyme is a must in any home cook’s spice cabinet! Below we’ll share the ratio for using dried thyme for fresh, and then a few of the best substitutes for thyme.

How do I substitute dried thyme for fresh?

The best option for fresh thyme is to use dried if you have it on hand! Here’s the conversion ratio. Ratio: For 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, substitute 1 teaspoon dried thyme. (This works for any dried herbs.)

Best substitutes for thyme

Note that how these options work depend on the type of recipe and how thyme is used. Of course, it’s best to run out and grab some if at all possible.

1. Oregano (fresh or dried).

You can substitute equal parts of fresh or dried oregano for fresh or dried thyme. Their flavor is similar. However, oregano has a distinctly Italian vibe, whereas thyme is a little less distinct.

2. Marjoram or savory (dried).

Marjoram or savory have similar flavors to thyme, so if you have them they work as a substitute. These herbs are a little more unique, so you might not have them on hand. (They’d likely work for fresh as well, but if you don’t have fresh thyme we assume you don’t have fresh marjoram or savory, either!)

3. Italian seasoning (dried).

Here’s a fun trick! Thyme is included in Italian seasoning, so in a pinch you could use it as a substitute for thyme. Of course, like oregano it will have a bit more of an Italian flavor.

Related recipes

Here are some of our favorite recipes featuring fresh or dried thyme:

About the authors

Sonja & Alex

Meet Sonja and Alex Overhiser: Husband and wife. Expert home cooks. Authors of recipes you'll want to make again and again.

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