I’ve been noticing a lot of posts lately that always begin with “The Top Ten…” Well, try as I may, I can’t cut my spice list down to only ten. Plain old salt and pepper are a given. Everyone has those. The following are my ‘go to’ seasonings for cooking and baking. Many are combined with others and used in rubs, seasonings for roasts, marinades.
- Allspice – Use in soups, barbeque sauce and marinades.
- Basil – Use this in spaghetti sauces, lasagna, breads.
- Bay Leaf – Makes any soup or stew taste better. Be sure to remove the leaf before serving.
- Caraway Seed – Essential for Caraway/Rye bread.
- Cayenne Pepper – A dash here and there adds a little zip. Great for livening up Spinach dip.
- Celery Salt – Add to flour when breading chicken for frying.
- Chili Powder – Mexican/Southwest meats, rice, cowboy beans and of course, chili.
- Chives – Put in scrambled eggs, top baked potatoes, add to biscuits and dumplings.
- Cilantro – A must have for Mexican/Southwest meat, rice or bean dishes.
- Cloves, Ground – Use in cookies, pumpkin pie, pumpkin rolls, spice cake.
- Cinnamon, Ground – Use mostly in baked goods.
- Cream of Tarter – Use when making a delicious, soft sugar cookie.
- Cumin – Another must have for Mexican/Southwest meat, rice or bean dishes.
- Dill Seed – Use in dips, sautéing/roasting veggies, herb bread
- Dill Weed – Use in dips, sautéing/roasting veggies, herb bread
- Garlic Powder – Use in everything (except cookies or cakes)
- Celery Leaves – Adds a nice light celery flavor in soups, stuffing, baked poultry
- Celery Seed, Whole – Use in coleslaw, meat rubs and season veggies.
- Ginger, Ground – Use in cookies, pumpkin pie, pumpkin rolls, spice cake.
- Mustard, Ground – Use in Swiss steak, good to have on hand.
- Nutmeg – Use in pumpkin pie, pumpkin rolls, spice cake.
- Onion, Minced – Good to have on hand in case your run out of fresh.
- Onion Powder – Use in everything (except cookies or cakes)
- Oregano – Use this in spaghetti sauces, lasagna, breads.
- Paprika – Adds color when sprinkled on deviled eggs, use in goulash.
- Parsley – Adds color and a little flavor to biscuits and soups.
- Red Pepper Flakes – Use to add a little hotness to foods
- Rosemary – Use on poultry, in herb bread.
- Sage – Use in stuffing, dressing, baked poultry
- Thyme -Use in herb breads, sautéing/roasting veggies, and on meats.
I have a few other spices in my cupboard, but don’t use them as often as these 30. It’s always good to have Kosher salt or sea salt on hand, too. Some recipes call for a larger salt crystal. Never substitute table salt for Kosher or sea salt without reducing the measurement.
Spices have always been expensive. When I was first starting out, (back in the day when minimum wage was less than $3.00/hour,) I’d buy a spice tin each payday. Dang, I’m showing my age. Spices came in tins – not bottles. Even now, I don’t buy garlic or onion salt, I make my own by mixing 1 teaspoon powder with 3 teaspoons of table salt. I guess I could do the same with celery salt. I hadn’t thought about it as I don’t use it as often.
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