Spice mix

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Whole spices used to create garam masala

Spice mixes are blended spices or herbs. When a certain combination of herbs or spices is called for in a recipe, it is convenient to blend these ingredients beforehand. Blends such as chili powder, curry powder, herbes de Provence, garlic salt, and other seasoned salts are traditionally sold pre-made by grocers, and sometimes baking blends such as pumpkin pie spice are also available. These spice mixes are also easily made by the home cook for later use.


Masala (from Hindi/Urdu masalah, based on Arabic masalih)[1][2] is a term from the Indian subcontinent for a spice mix. A masala can be either a combination of dried (and usually dry-roasted) spices, or a paste (such as vindaloo masala) made from a mixture of spices and other ingredients—often garlic, ginger, onions, chilli paste and tomato. Masalas are used extensively in Indian cuisine to add spice and flavour,[3] most familiarly to Western cuisine in chicken tikka masala and chicken curry, or in masala chai.[4] Other South Asian cuisines including Bangladeshi, Nepali, Pakistani and Sri Lankan, Southeast Asian cuisine such as Burmese and the Caribbean regularly use spice mixes.[citation needed]

Notable spice mixes by region[edit]

Ingredients for a Gulf-style baharat
A container of pumpkin pie spice


East and Southeast Asian[edit]

  • Five-spice powder, a blend of cassia (Chinese cinnamon), star anise, cloves, and two other spices
  • Húng lìu, a Vietnamese blend
  • Shichimi, a mix of ground red chili pepper, Japanese pepper, roasted orange peel, black and white sesame seed, hemp seed, ground ginger and nori


Middle East and Africa[edit]

South Asian[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Masala". Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary. Merriam-Webster. Retrieved October 12, 2022.
  2. ^ "Masala | Definition of masala in English by Oxford Dictionaries". Oxford Dictionaries | English. Archived from the original on May 1, 2018. Retrieved April 30, 2018.
  3. ^ V.K. Modi; G.S. Sidde Gowda; P.Z. Sakhare; N.S. Mahendrakar & D. Narasimha Rao (2006). "Pre-processed spice mix formulation and changes in its quality during storage". LWT - Food Science and Technology. 39 (6): 613. doi:10.1016/j.lwt.2005.05.004.
  4. ^ "Spices in Chicken Masala and Chicken Curry Kabsa".
  5. ^ Tomlinson, Mary (December 11, 2017). "What's Really in Old Bay Seasoning?". Coastal Living. Retrieved June 18, 2020.
  6. ^ Ingraham, Christopher (March 8, 2016). "They put Old Bay on everything in Maryland. Soon you will, too". The Washington Post. Retrieved June 18, 2020.
  7. ^ Kloman, Harry (February 13, 2011). "Glossary". Ethiopian Food ♦ Mesob Across America. Retrieved October 24, 2017. Afrinj አፍርንጅ. A very mildly spiced condiment for kids or anyone who can't handle berbere or mitmita.
  8. ^ "Visiting Sri Lanka soon? Bookmark our guide to feast like a local in Colombo". Vogue India. December 11, 2019. Retrieved September 20, 2021.

External links[edit]