Handy herbs

Try rubbing herbs between your fingers to release the scent.

Searcher from the Eat Move Learn team examines herbsHerbs are very useful plants. You use them to add flavours to food when cooking.

> Download your free Handy herbs factsheet

Basil | Bay leaf | Dill | Parsley | Mint | Rosemary | Sage | Tarragon | Herb challenge


Basil is a leaf with a peppery taste. You can use it in many different dishes, from salads to meat, and it is often used in Italian cooking. Why not try adding it to tomato salad, making pesto or using Thai basil in stir-fries? It’s delicious!

Bay leaf

Bay leaf is the leaf of the laurel tree. It tastes slightly bitter and spicy. You usually buy them dried. People add it to soups, meat and fish dishes for extra flavour. But you don’t eat it – you just use it to add flavour.


Dill is a herb with leaves like feathers. It tastes a bit like liquorice. Add it to tuna salads, omelettes or mix it with chopped cucumber and yoghurt for a tasty dip for veggie sticks.


There are two types of parsley: flat leaf and curly leaf. They are used in many different dishes, such as salads, soups and pasta. Add it to your baked potatoes.


Mint leaves taste cool and are used in both sweet and savoury dishes. They are even used in drinks. You can add mint to your fruit salad or even water for a fresh taste. Our tzatziki dip recipe uses mint.


Rosemary leaves look a bit like Christmas tree leaves. They taste bittersweet and are used in stews, soups and meat dishes. People roast chicken with rosemary for some extra flavour.


Sage is a herb with velvety leaves. It has a strong flavour and is used for stews, meat dishes and in stuffing for roast dinners. It also goes well with avocado salad.


Tarragon has long, thin leaves and tastes a bit like liquorice. It’s used in chicken and fish dishes, or to add flavour to oils. You could try cooking with tarragon with a tomato and tuna salad for extra special flavour, or it is really nice with potatoes.

Herb challenge!

Ask an adult to show you the herbs they use at home.

  1. What do they smell like?
  2. What do they taste like?
  3. What dishes are the herbs used in?
  4. How many herbs can you name?
  5. Can you grow them?

Eat Move Learn logo