Thursday, June 11, 2009

20+ Spices, Herbs, and Mixes for Your Kitchen

All those little bottles of spices, herbs and seasoning mixes can really put a dent in your wallet but if you have a little over 20 items in your cupboards you can make most any recipe.

Yes, I do have more the 20 items here but some are duplicates. If something goes on sale I buy two especially if I know that I will use it within a year. I try to use all my seasonings within a year of purchase. They start to lose their flavor after that.

Here's my list of the most important. Or at least in my view. There may be some that you just can't abide. Like curry. There are some people that just can't stand curry. Whatever, floats your boat. I love the stuff.

Back to the list.


Salt (it's a given)
Pepper (ditto)
Cayenne Pepper
Red Pepper Flakes
(Do you see a theme? Oh yeah, I love me some pepper)




Italian Seasoning
Taco seasoning
Old Bay seasoning
Poultry seasoning
Herbes de Provence

Most of the herbs you can grow in pots on the patio. In fact, I would suggest this. They taste so much better fresh. They can be dried or made into pesto to freeze. One of the nice things about herbs is that you don't have to have a lot of space or a green thumb. Have you got a sunny spot and crappy soil? Then you can grow herbs. No really, you can. Brown thumb be damned.

You could totally skip the seasoning mixes but if you do then you will have to invest in a few more spices and herbs. No big deal but I find that the convenience of seasoning mixes make my life easier. Working full time and the type of cooking that I do makes the seasoning mixes a must.

You are probably wondering what a vegetarian does with poultry seasoning. I mix it into flour to make seasoned breading for tofu. Fried in a little olive oil and served with a spicy aioli. YUM! Veggie chicken fingerish. The Old Bay is to make fake fish sticks. If you do tofu right it even has the same texture. I'll never convince some of you and that's okay; use it for meat if you want too. I don't judge here. That's what I said John (Sprite's daddy) I won't judge. Sure, defile the chili powder I sent to your house on meat. See if I care. LOL!

Have you got a yen for adobo seasoning? Silently crave fennel? Yearning for spicy goodness of saffron? Spill your spice secret. What's your favorite herb, spice or seasoning?


*Disclaimer - Your list may vary. Product may settle in shipping. Author does not imply that she is the authority on the subject of spices, herbs or seasoning mixes. In fact, she does not believe that she is an authority on anything. I do not directly or indirectly dispense medical advice or prescribe the use of herbs or spices as a form of treatment for illness. I'm just a cook here. The information found on this Web Site is for educational purposes only I just giving people information on how to save a little money, cook some terrific food, and pretty much bitch about whatever I want. This website was neither designed or manufactured as a product for lethal purposes. Although JR may differ upon tasting the cullinary results.


  1. What, no sulfur? I use it liberally. Cheers Michelle!!

  2. I love cloves. You don't have cloves on your list!

  3. Bwahahaha! That gave me the biggest laugh this morning!
    I was looking at the picture for the spice since John uses it on EVERYTHING! He loves it and when he used it on the, um, meat, it gave it the best flavor. I'm going to try it on our carrots next!

  4. Variety is the spice of life.....but what flavor is spice?? I'm so anal about my spices that when I open a new one, I put the date on the cover in indelible marker. :-} Is there help for me, doc?

  5. I'm a big fan of Tony Chacheries Cajun Seasoning and they have a low sodium variety. But I have all of those in your list! lol I noticed that after I became a vegetarian I wanted to try more intricate dishes.

    Have you tried freezing the tofu then boiling it before marinating/breading? There's a recipe like that on Recipezaar and my meat loving ex devoured it! Course, I added a little Chipolte Grill Mates seasoning packet to the breading. It's almost too good. If something like that tastes too "meaty", it kinda makes me want to hurl.

  6. I try to stay away from our spice drawer, sensory overload.

    How about sauces? Supreme Leader has a blistering assortment of sauces.

  7. I can honestly say that we have all of the spices listed, aren't you proud of me? Also, did you just suggest that I grow pot on my patio? The nerve...