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6 DIY Spice Mixes from Around the World

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6 DIY Spice Mixes from Around the World

By Sara Novak, Planet Green

Spices can make all the difference in the world when you’re attempting to come up with innovative nightly eats. Eating in is easier on your waistline, the planet, and your wallet.

In my house we go out to eat about once a week, most other meals we eat at home. But no matter how you plan meals in your house, having the right spices on hand is crucial to improving the pleasure quotient of home cooking.

Often times the ingredients you see in recipes are actually prepared spice combinations that are a necessity to getting ethnic cuisine right. It’s like making paella without saffron, it’s just not the same. Instead of buying spice combinations, consider making them at home from spices that you may already have. These spice combinations keep for about 3 to 4 months and then they start to lose flavor, so use them liberally and enjoy.

(click through to the end, or click the left arrow, for a printer-friendly version)

1. Garam Masala

2 tbsp cumin seeds
2 tbsp coriander seeds
2 tbsp cardamom seeds
2 tbsp black peppercorns
1 tsp whole cloves
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp grated nutmeg


1. Add all the spices except the cinnamon and nutmeg to a skillet and toast on medium heat for a few minutes, just until fragrant. Do not burn the spices or you’ll have to start over.

2. Add all the spices to a spice mill or coffee grinder and grind into powder. Store in an airtight container.

Recipe adapted from Ochef.

Garam Masala is an Indian spice combination that’s delightful in Emeril’s Greens With Aromatic Spices and in Emeril’s Grilled Tandoori Chicken.

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Samantha, selected from Planet Green

Planet Green is the multi-platform media destination devoted to the environment and dedicated to helping people understand how humans impact the planet and how to live a more environmentally sustainable lifestyle. Its two robust websites, and, offer original, inspiring, and entertaining content related to how we can evolve to live a better, brighter future. Planet Green is a division of Discovery Communications.


+ add your own
8:17AM PST on Jan 16, 2012

Awesome, thanks!!

7:45AM PDT on Oct 7, 2011

great article! saved in my bookmarks.

10:18AM PDT on Sep 1, 2011

thank you so much for this article....i want to make my own spice mixes

7:49AM PDT on Jun 29, 2011

thanks for these recipes!

11:33AM PDT on Jun 16, 2011


7:13PM PDT on Jun 15, 2011

Wow, stimulating article! Of course, the right spices make a world of difference. We are growing some of our own herbs. I love lavender; but never knew it as a spice before this reading. Now I HAVE to read the linked article: A Synthetic Marijuana Called Spice! Life is all about catching experiences especially food related ones & eating them up!!! Yum! Yum! Bon appetite!

6:50PM PDT on Jun 13, 2011

Thanks for the recipe ideas.

8:39PM PDT on Jun 12, 2011

Thank-you for the informative article. Great for those who cook.

2:20PM PDT on Jun 11, 2011

Useful information.

11:31AM PDT on Jun 11, 2011

Thank you for the article! I even wrote some of the spices down for future reference!

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