There are literally hundreds of different herbs and spices out there. With so many choices, how is it possible to limit yourself to just what fits in your cabinet? How can you even know where to start!
8 Essential Spices for Your Spice Rack
Never fear! Here, we will break down the 8 essential spices for your spice rack that every home chef should have, no matter your level of experience.
Salt is an obvious thing to include in your spice cabinet (and you probably already have some in there), but have you ever considered the type of salt that you’re putting in your dishes?
Not all salts are created equal. If you’re just getting started, kosher salt is a good place to start. However, you might want to expand your arsenal with sea salt for baking needs and flaky salt for finishing your dishes with an extra pop of flavor.
2. Black Pepper
Black pepper is another must-have. However, you want to make sure your black pepper is high-quality, so don’t go buying the pre-ground stuff. Freshly ground peppercorns will make a huge difference.
Cinnamon is definitely a go-to for sweet dishes. It goes great with a little bit of sugar, but it can also be used in savory dishes to bring some warmth to your palate.
Cinnamon can come either ground or in sticks – check out this online gourmet spice store to see both varieties!
Cumin has an earthy quality that you don’t find in most other seasonings. This nutty spice has a pungent aroma that will remind you of Middle Eastern, Mexican, and Indian dishes. If you want to diversify your palate a little bit, cumin is definitely the way to go.
You’ll probably recognize paprika for its bright red color and it can make a big difference in the color and flavor of your dishes. Paprika also comes in many varieties, from sweet to hot to smoked.
Nutmeg also plays especially well with sweet dishes (and you’ll find it prominently featured in pumpkin pie spice blends). It has a warm, earthy flavor and comes from the nutmeg tree.
7. Cayenne Pepper
If you find yourself in need of some extra heat in your dishes, cayenne is a great place to start. Cayenne is made from dried red chili peppers and will add a serious kick to any dish so use sparingly.
8. Dried Oregano
Oregano is technically not a spice but an herb but, regardless, it’s an essential ingredient that you should have. Oregano is closely related to the mint plant but it provides a bit more of a lemony, bold flavor.
This plant is native to the Mediterranean region and is featured prominently in Italian cuisine. It also has many health benefits.
Essential Spices to Spice Up Your Cooking
You never want your cooking to be bland, even if you’re just cooking for yourself. With these 8 essential spices, you can be sure that you’ll have just the right flavor to add to any dish.
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