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Top Lemon Thyme Substitutes

Top Lemon Thyme Substitutes

If you are making a recipe that calls for lemon thyme but you’re all out there is no need to worry. There are a number of substitutes you can use to finish your recipe. And you will most likely have one or more of these alternatives in your pantry already.

So what are the top substitutes for lemon thyme?

The best lemon thyme substitutions are lemon zest with thyme, lemon verbena, lemon balm, dried lemon thyme, or lemongrass.

Lemon Thyme Alternatives

Depending on what you have on hand any of these replacements will work great but my favorite is regular thyme with lemon zest.

Lemon Zest and Thyme

If you do not have fresh lemon zest then you can get it by grating the rind off a lemon and combining it with fresh thyme. This combination gives you a bright lemon flavor and also improves any recipe that calls for thyme.

Lemon Verbena

This is one of my favorite ingredients. It has a green herb flavor that is slightly floral and perfect to use in place of lemon thyme. You can use it in savory recipes or just add a few drops to your iced tea or lemonade for a refreshing taste.

Dried Lemon Thyme

If you don’t have fresh thyme then dried lemon thyme will work fine. It also complements herbs well so it is not bad at all to substitute for regular thyme when needed.


This ingredient is the best known substitute for lemon thyme. It has a slightly citrus flavor that is similar to lemons. I have never used it in a dish though; but I have always wanted to try it.

Use these substitutions sparingly though

Now you will need to figure out how much of each ingredient you should use in place of the lemon thyme if you are making a recipe that calls for any form of lemon thyme. It is best to start out with half as much of the alternative ingredient as your recipe calls for lemon thyme. Then simply increase how much you use according to taste.

What Is Lemon Thyme

Lemon thyme is a herb that is commonly used in Southern cooking. It is a member of the mint family and comes from a type of lemon called “Thymus serpyllum”. Lemon thyme is not the same as regular thyme; but it does have similar properties.

Bottom Line

Lemon thyme is a type of herb that comes from a type of lemon. There are various ways to substitute for it. My preferred replacement is regular thyme with lemon zest but any of these substitutes will work well in your recipe.