Are you looking for the best substitutes for lemongrass? Here are 4 alternatives for when you don’t have any lemongrass on hand. 

A close-up photo of a pile of lemongrass stalks.

A culinary staple in Southeast Asia, lemongrass adds its characteristic herbaceous lemony zing to a wide range of dishes and even teas. Fresh lemongrass, in particular, will add a depth of complex flavors to meals. Countries like Thailand, Indonesia, and India feature lemongrass in many of their most popular dishes. Today, many cooks prize the distinctive taste of this herb, but unfortunately, it’s not always easy to come by. In fact, even dried lemongrass (which has a more woodsy taste than fresh) isn’t typically available in most mainstream supermarkets in the West. 

Luckily, if you can’t get lemongrass for a special dish you’re planning to prepare, there are some good lemongrass substitutes that will do an admirable job standing in for the Southeastern herb. Lemongrass is well known for its lemony flavor that boasts hints of ginger. By adding a touch of ginger to your dishes and supplying a known lemongrass alternative with a lemony fragrance and taste, you can replicate lemongrass’s contribution to dishes fairly well. Here, we’ll explore some of the best lemongrass substitutes that you can use if lemongrass isn’t available at your local store.