Chopping parsley is perfectly painless when you follow Chef John's flawless shaving method.
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chopping parsley with chef's knife
Credit: Stephen Zeigler / Getty Images

Confession: I've been chopping Italian parsley the slow way for years.

It's the prep work that was slowing me down. I'd stand at the kitchen counter patiently plucking the leaves off their tiny stems, one by one, forming the leaves into a neat pile. Only then would I reach for the knife.

It's no sin to be meticulous, of course. But there is a faster — a much faster — way to do it.

And look here, it's Chef John, ready to show us his time-saving shaving technique:

To perform this simple trick, grab a big bunch of clean parsley by the stems, and holding your chef's knife at about a 45-degree angle to the stems just shave the leaves right off the stems. Note: It helps to have a sharp knife.

Then just chop away. You're done in seconds. And don't worry if you get some small stems in there. They're a delicious and nutritious part of the parsley plant. So chop them up along with the beautiful flat leaves.

Chef John's Chimichurri Sauce
Chef John's Chimichurri Sauce | Photo by Schweebz

Now Chef John's making a boatload of chopped parsley for his Chimichurri Sauce, so he's going to town on the entire bunch of parsley.

Obviously, you can shave just a portion of the parsley bunch, and then be on your way.

Chopping parsley is painless when you follow Chef John's flawless shaving method. But it's an even faster exercise if you washed and bundled your Italian parsley in advance.

For speedy results, wash the parsley thoroughly right after you buy it; divide it into 4 or 5 five bundles; and store them, wrapped in paper towels, in a plastic bag in the fridge.

One bunch of parsley will yield about 4 or 5 paper towel-wrapped bundles.