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15 best Celery Substitute options.

Below is a list of top celery substitute options. It will be helpful when you want a similar crunch or celery flavor but don’t have any celery available.

Celery is such a versatile vegetable. You can use it in chicken salad, soups, and even juice. While it may sound like something difficult to replace, our list makes it easy.

cutting board with sliced celery stacks

What Is Celery?

Celery is a green vegetable from the parsley family (also known as Apiaceae). It provides a healthy snack with a crunchy texture and a watery, bitter, earthy taste.

When eating celery, you’ll notice a unique flavor. It is both mild and robust at the same time.

This vegetable is mainly seen in savory recipes. Yet, some sweet dishes also use celery, like sorbet, compote, and cookies. It is common to use celery stalks in cooking. This is because the leaves at the top have a much milder taste.

Besides fresh celery, grocery stores will also offer celery seed and celery salt. These seasonings come from an older variety of celery called smallage. Ground celery seeds are best for stews and soups. They also make potato salad taste better.

Celery Types

There are three main celery varieties: leaf celery, pascal celery, and celeriac. The variety available in grocery stores in the US is stalk celery/pascal. You may also find leaf celery and celeriac in certain grocery stores.

Best Celery Substitutes and Alternatives

1. Jicama

Jicama is a great celery substitute due to its crunch and similar watery taste. This vegetable is versatile, and you may use it as a swap in cooked and raw recipes. You can use jicama in some sweet recipes like fruit salad as well. This celery substitute is also great in soups, stir-fries, and raw with dips.


As popularity for this swap rises, it’s easier to find in grocery stores.


This root vegetable does not share the same color as celery. It does provide sweetness in recipes when used raw. This creates a different flavor. To use jicama, you will need to peel the vegetable. Doing this adds a few minutes to any recipe.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio to replace celery with jicama.

2. Fennel

Fennel is a delicious vegetable mimicking celery’s flavor when raw and cooked. It offers a similar color, creating a similar appearance in recipes. The color similarity is especially noticeable when using the fennel fronds.

Use fennel bulbs in soups, stir-fry recipes, and salads for a similar texture.


When raw, fennel provides a crunch, as you would find with celery.


Raw fennel also has a licorice flavor, which may turn off many people. Ensure that dinner guests enjoy the taste of this vegetable before adding it to recipes.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio when using this celery alternative.

3. Green Bell Peppers

Green bell peppers are a delicious way to substitute celery. They offer a similar green color and a delightful crunch when raw.


These vegetables have a similar taste when eaten raw. They both have a slight sweetness when cooked. Use bell pepper for stir-fries, salads, and dip.


The bitterness in green bell peppers is more potent than in celery. There will be a noticeable taste difference, especially when raw.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio when using this celery substitute.

4. Radish

Radishes are a great swap if you’re looking for a replacement that provides a nice crunch when eaten.

You can use radishes to replace celery in creamy salads like chicken or pasta salad. It will also taste good in a vegetable dip.


They offer a similar watery taste to recipes found in celery.


Besides the bright red exterior, these vegetables offer a spicy and peppery taste. That said, there will be a difference in flavor and appearance. They are not a good swap in cooked dishes.

Cooking Tip: When creating salads, start with ¾ the required amount, and adjust as needed.

5. Cucumber

Cucumbers are always available, cheap, and mild in flavor. Plus, these vegetables provide an earthy, watery taste like celery.


Cucumbers add a nice crunch when eaten if the skin is left on cucumbers. This mimics the consistency of celery. Ensure you wash the skins well to avoid dirt or debris in your dish.


These vegetables do not work well in cooked recipes due to their high-water content. They work well as alternatives to celery in raw dishes like salads and dips.

Cooking Tip: Start with a 1:1 ratio to replace celery with cucumber. Increase to your desired amount.

6. Water Chestnuts

Water chestnuts are a great way to add crunch to raw and cooked recipes. This is because they keep a crispy texture during the cooking process. They also provide a mild, slightly sweet taste.

But, this swap will need to be ground into flour for sweet recipes. Water chestnuts are excellent in stir-fries and soups.


You may use water chestnuts for both sweet and savory dishes.

Finding this ingredient in raw form is challenging. This food item is white, lacking the green color that celery provides in dishes.
Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio to replace celery with water chestnuts.

7. Celery Root (Celeriac)

As mentioned, celeriac is one type of celery available in the US. This connection makes it a great option as it will provide a similar taste to stalk celery.

Celery root is perfect for cooked and raw recipes like soup, dips, and salads.


There is a similarity in texture, as celeriac provides a crunch to dishes.


Nuttiness will be present when using celery root instead of celery. Plus, this swap may be challenging to find in grocery stores. Also, it turns brown quickly after peeling. Ensure to use it immediately to avoid an unappealing appearance.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio to use celeriac instead of celery.

8. Carrots

Carrots are a widely available vegetable with a similar texture when cooked or raw. They are also from the same vegetable family. This explains the similarities between carrots and celery.

Carrots are excellent in soups, stir-fries, and eaten sliced plain or with a dip.


This option is one swap that you can also use for juice, like celery.


These root vegetables provide a sweeter taste than celery. They also lack bitterness and are bright orange. For this reason, it creates a difference in flavor and appearance.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio to swap celery with carrots.

9. Green Beans

Green beans, like celery, have a crunch when raw. They become softer as they cook. Green beans are available in grocery stores year-round and are an affordable option. Some varieties even offer a similar stringiness found in celery stalks.

You can use green beans in fry recipes, soups, and meat stews.


They provide a similar green color in dishes, like celery. You will also find a similar bitterness when eating green beans.


Its grassy taste brings a noticeable difference in flavor.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio to replace celery with green beans.

10. Broccoli

Broccoli is a good substitute because it gives similar green color to dishes that need celery. This celery replacement can be used raw or cooked, making it versatile.

You may choose this vegetable for salads, stir-fries, and cooking soups.


This replacement provides a similar earthy, slightly bitter flavor present in celery.


Because of its different texture, it is not a perfect alternative for all recipes.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio to swap celery for broccoli in dishes.

11. Cabbage

Cabbage is an excellent substitute for celery due to its crunch and similar green color. There are four varieties of cabbage, including Chinese cabbage. Each offers a different purpose so that you can use it in more recipes. As cabbage cooks, it softens and provides a similar sweet flavor to celery.

Use this cruciferous veggie as a celery substitute in soup, fish tacos, and salads. It is also perfect for stir-fries.


You can use this vegetable raw. It can also be cooked via nearly all methods. You can fry, sautee, steam, roast, boil, and blanch it.


Some varieties of cabbage are not as easily found at the grocery store.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio when replacing celery with cabbage.

12. Bok Choy

Bok choy provides a similar watery consistency as celery. When raw, bok choy is crunchy. It also softens as it cooks. This vegetable provides a similar yet slightly darker green color to recipes.

Use bok choy for stir-fries and soups as a celery replacement.


Bok choy offers a similar taste to celery, providing an earthiness and mild flavor in dishes.


This alternative may be challenging to find in some areas. This is especially true if there are no Asian markets nearby.

Cooking Tip: Use this swap in a 1:1 ratio.

13. Leeks

These vegetables are another excellent alternative for celery due to their green color. Plus, you can eat leeks raw or cooked. They are known for their oniony taste.
Use leeks for recipes like stir-fries and soups and to create a vegetable broth.


Leeks share a fibrous texture with celery.


When eaten raw, leeks can offer a tough texture, making them chewy. This replacement provides an onion-like flavor not present in celery.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 quantity to replace celery with leeks.

14. Asparagus

Asparagus shares a bitter taste with celery. This swap provides a similar green color in recipes like most vegetable alternatives.

Use asparagus in cooked or raw recipes. This swap is also excellent in stir-fries and soups.


If this vegetable is not cooked for long, it will add a similar crunch to recipes. It also provides a fibrous texture, like celery.


Asparagus has a grassy and generally stronger flavor. It’s best to use smaller quantities to avoid an overpowering asparagus taste.

Cooking Tip: Start with ½ the required amount and add more if needed.

15. Apples

Apples make an unexpected celery substitute. Raw green apples add a delicious crunch to coleslaw and potato salads. It also works in creamy salads like chicken or tuna salad.

They provide a similar pop of green color to recipes. This swap is a great option to use for sweet dishes as well.


This is easily found in grocery stores year-round. More varieties are even available in the fall.


The flavor of apples is much different from celery. You can expect a sour, slightly sweet taste when using green apples as a replacement.

Cooking Tip: Use a 1:1 ratio to replace celery with green apples in dishes.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Do You Substitute for Celery?

Fennel stalks and fennel bulbs work well as a substitute for celery. The bulbs provide a similar crunch. The whole vegetable offers a celery-like flavor.
Other substitutes include jicama, radishes, and carrots for a similar texture.

What Is a Good Celery Substitute in Soup?

Fennel bulbs are the top option for a celery substitute in soup. Once cooked, this vegetable offers a milder taste like celery. Carrots are also a great option, as they add bulk to the soup.

Does Celery Add Flavor?

Yes, celery does add flavor. When raw, celery provides a bitter, salty, watery flavor. Once the celery is cooked, it offers a sweeter taste to recipes like stir-fry dishes and stews. It’s also quite aromatic, making it a great addition to dishes.

What Can I Swap Celery With to Make Chicken Salad?

There are a few options for substituting celery in chicken salad. You can choose between green apples and cucumber slices. Both offer a similar crunch, though apples will provide a sweeter taste. Water chestnuts and green bell pepper are also great options. They mimic the texture of celery.

Is Cilantro Similar to Celery?

No, cilantro is an herb, while celery is a vegetable. They both offer different flavors and aromas in recipes. If you’re only looking to add a pop of green color to dishes, cilantro works well as a garnish. Yet, its taste is too different to include in recipes as a celery alternative.


Now, when searching for a celery substitute, you can refer to the above list. It has options for every recipe.

Opt for fennel as the top replacement for cooked recipes. Otherwise, jicama and radishes make the best substitutes for celery. They create a similar texture in dishes and provide the same watery consistency.

More Ingredient Substitutes

Natalia | Flavorful home
Natalia is a recipe developer, food photographer, and home cook. She started Flavorful Home to document her recipes and share home cooking tips. She loves creating flavorful and nutritious meals while keeping the cooking process simple and joyful!
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