Guide to spices and herbs in the kitchen, Spices, herbs, spices and herbs, famous spices, famous herbs, uses of different spices
Guide to spices and herbs in the kitchen

We have put together this quick reference guide to all the most common (and some uncommon) herbs and spices.

Barbecue Spice (Seasoning): A blend of spices and seasonings such as paprika, chili powder, salt, sugar, and garlic.

Suggested use: For chicken or ribs, also for marinades or sauces.

BBQ Spice

Basil: Belonging to the mint family this herb is one of the most widely used.

Suggested use: Great for tomato sauces, pesto, and vinaigrettes.

Mint Family

Cardamom Seed: Seeds belonging to the ginger family.

Suggested use: The seeds are used for pickling, and assorted pastries.

Cardamom  Seed

Chili Peppers: Many varieties from mild to hot; sweet to salty.

Suggested use: Used to make chili powders for chili con carne, pickles, hot sauce, soups, and sauces.

hot chili pepper
Chili Pepper

Chili Powder: A blend of chili peppers, cumin, garlic oregano, salt, paprika, and other spices.

Suggested use: In chili con carne, seasoning spare ribs, stews, appetizers, etc.


Cinnamon: Bark from various trees of the cinnamon family.

Suggested use: Ground for bake goods or whole for pickles, hot drinks, and preserves.

Cinnamon powder

Cumin: Member of the carrot family. Aromatic seeds. Warm bitter flavor.

Suggested use: In chili powders, pickles, spare ribs, and other meat dishes.


Garlic: Flavored bulb of the onion family. (available in powder, salt, minced, or chopped)

Suggested use: Used in almost any type of sauce for meats, seafood, or poultry. Great for pastas, soups, etc.

Garlic Clove

Ginger: Dried pungent root of a plant grown in China, Japan, India, and the West Indies.

Suggested use: In pickles, chutney, and preserves. Also used in many oriental dishes.


Lemon Pepper: A blend of black pepper and dehydrated lemon.

Suggested use: Good in salads. Great with broiled meats, poultry, or seafood.

Lemon Pepper
Lemon Pepper

Mint (Leaves or Flakes): Cool pungent flavored herb.

Suggested use: As a garnish, used in middle eastern cooking, and lamb dishes.

Mint sprigs in bowl

Mixed Pickling Spice: A mixture of whole spices.

Suggested use: Pickling. Also good in soups and stews.

Mixed Pickling Spice

Mustard Seed: Seed of the mustard plant. Ground seed mixed with vinegar and other spices, makes prepared mustard.

Suggested use: Pickling, sauces, and gravies.

Mustard Seed
Mustard Seed

Oregano Leaves: Wild marjoram.

Suggested use: In Italian dishes, soups or sauces, meat stews, and in bean dishes.

Oregano Leaves
Oregano Leaves

Paprika: A form of red pepper; Hungarian is hotter than the mild Spanish paprika. The method of grinding determines the flavor.

Suggested use: For mild flavor and coloring of seafood, egg dishes, sauces, and salad dressings.


Parsley: Fresh or dried.

Suggested use: To garnish or season stocks, soups, sauces, salads, egg, and potato dishes.


Pepper (Black or White): Black pepper is the immature berries. White pepper is the mature berries with the hull removed.

Suggested use: Whole in stocks, and pickling. Ground in most other dishes.

White pepper and black pepper
White pepper and black pepper in wooden spoon.

Saffron: From a species of the the purple crocus this is the dried stigma.

Suggested use: In Spanish and Italian foods for mild flavor and yellow coloring.


Seasoned Pepper: A mixture of black pepper, other spices, and sweet pepper flakes.

Suggested use: Use when ever pepper is used for a unique twist.

Seasoned Pepper
Seasoned Pepper

Soy Sauce: Made from soy beans.

Suggested use: Used in many oriental dishes.

Soy Sauce

Tabasco: Trade name for hot Mexican peppers; salted and cured for three years, then blended with vinegar and strained.

Suggested use: Soups, sauces, salad dressings, and marinades.


Turmeric: Mustard flavored, root plant of the ginger family.

Suggested use: In curry powder, food coloring (egg shade), and meat and egg dishes.