Does Cilantro Taste Like Soap to You?

mexican cuisine nashua nh

Cilantro is one of those foods that people either love or hate. No one is really take-it-or-leave-it about cilantro. As a common ingredient in Mexican cuisine in Nashua, NH, and Mexican cuisine everywhere, cilantro is often the reason some people choose to avoid Mexican food. If you ask those people why they don’t like cilantro, they will often say that it tastes like soap. If you’re not one of those people, that can be hard to wrap your head around. It’s a pretty small group of people who think cilantro tastes like soap, and, for the most part, we can actually explain why.

It’s science! Well, genetics, to be precise.


Not Everyone Can Smell It

Cilantro technically tastes like soap to everyone, but a very small number of people can notice it. There’s a type of organic compound in cilantro called aldehydes that create the soapy flavor that some people can detect. Those people have a set of olfactory-receptor genes that most people don’t have. It’s hard to pin down exactly how many people have the soapy cilantro gene, but scientists estimate that it’s between 4% and 14%.


It Varies Among Groups of People

Although we don’t know exactly how many people have the gene, we do know that certain groups are more likely than others to think that cilantro is soapy. For example, women are more likely to dislike cilantro because they detect its soapy taste. It gets more interesting when you look at ethnic groups. People of European descent are the most likely to think cilantro tastes soapy when compared to African Americans, Latinos, Middle Easterners, and East and South Asians. Not surprisingly, of all those groups, Latinos are the least likely to dislike cilantro.


You Can Change Your Mind

You might think that people who detect cilantro’s soapy taste will dislike it forever. But it turns out that’s not true. Some people find that if you crush the leaves, like when making pesto, the flavor is milder and pleasant. Others find that they like it despite the taste because they begin to associate it with positive memories. Memories like sharing a meal with friends and family when you head to California Burritos for some delicious Mexican cuisine in Nashua, NH.


California Burritos: Mexican Cuisine in Nashua NH

There are lots of great places to eat around here, but when you want to share some tasty Mexican cuisine in Nashua, NH, with friends and family, it’s hard to beat California Burritos. We’re affordable, delicious, and convenient. What more could you ask from your Mexican food?


Visit our locations in Nashua, Hudson, Amherst, or Manchester!

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