How to Grate Nutmeg?

If you’re a fan of cooking with nutmeg, you may have noticed that it’s often sold in whole nutmeg seeds. Grating nutmeg can be a bit of a challenge, especially if you don’t have the right tools or technique.

How to Grate Nutmeg?

Begin by purchasing a whole nutmeg nut. Use a nutmeg grater, or a Microplane grater, to grate the nut. To do this, hold the nut in one hand and the grater in the other. Gently rub the nut against the grater, using a circular motion, until the desired amount of nutmeg is grated. Alternatively, you can also use a mortar and pestle to grind the nutmeg into a fine powder.

In this article, we’ll go over everything you need to know about grating nutmeg, including the best tools to use, how to properly store nutmeg, and some tips and tricks for getting the most flavor out of this delicious spice.

See Also: How to Use Nutmeg Powder?

How to Grate Nutmeg? – Method

Here is a complete method to grate nutmeg:

Step 1: Choosing the Right Tool

The first step in grating nutmeg is choosing the right tool. There are several options to choose from, each with its own set of pros and cons. Here are a few options to consider:

  • Microplane grater: A microplane grater is a small, handheld tool with a fine grating surface. This is a great option for grating nutmeg because it allows you to finely grate the spice, resulting in a more evenly distributed flavor. However, a microplane grater can be a bit difficult to use if you have large hands or if you’re trying to grate a large amount of nutmeg at once.
  • Box grater: A box grater is a more traditional tool that is often used for grating cheese and vegetables. It has a variety of grating surfaces, including fine, medium, and coarse. While a box grater is a good option for grating nutmeg, it can be a bit more labor-intensive and may not produce as fine a grate as a microplane grater.
  • Nutmeg grater: A nutmeg grater is a specialized tool that is specifically designed for grating nutmeg. It is typically a small, handheld tool with a fine grating surface. While a nutmeg grater is a good option for grating nutmeg, it may be more expensive than other options and may not be as versatile as a microplane grater or a box grater.
  • Mortar and pestle: A mortar and pestle is a traditional tool that is often used for grinding and crushing spices. While it can be used to grind nutmeg, it is a bit more time-consuming and may not produce as fine a grate as other options.

Step 2: Grating the Nutmeg

Once you’ve chosen the right tool, it’s time to start grating the nutmeg. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Start by breaking off a small piece of nutmeg from the whole seed.
  2. Place the nutmeg piece on a cutting board or other flat surfaces.
  3. Hold the grater in one hand and the nutmeg in the other hand.
  4. Carefully and slowly grate the nutmeg by moving the grater back and forth across the nutmeg.
  5. Use a spoon or small spatula to collect the grated nutmeg as you go.

It’s important to take your time when grating nutmeg to ensure that you get a fine, even grate. If you’re using a box grater, you may want to use the fine grating surface to get the best results.

Step 3: Storing Nutmeg

Proper storage is key to ensuring that your nutmeg stays fresh and flavorful. Here are a few tips for storing nutmeg:

  1. Keep nutmeg in a cool, dry place: Nutmeg should be stored in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight. A pantry or cupboard is a good option.
  2. Use an airtight container: Nutmeg should be stored in an airtight container to keep it fresh. This will prevent the spice from losing its flavor and aroma over time.
  3. Keep nutmeg whole: It’s best to keep nutmeg whole until you’re ready to use it. Grating nutmeg releases its essential oils, which can cause the spice to lose flavor over time. If you do need to grate nutmeg ahead of time, it’s a good idea to store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator to extend its shelf life.
  4. Use nutmeg within a year: Nutmeg can last for up to a year if stored properly, but it’s best to use it within six months to a year to ensure that it has the best flavor.

Step 4: Using Nutmeg

Now that you know how to grate nutmeg, it’s time to start using it in your cooking. Here are a few tips for getting the most flavor out of this delicious spice:

  1. Grate nutmeg fresh: Freshly grated nutmeg has the most flavor, so it’s a good idea to grate it just before using it in a recipe.
  2. Use a light hand: Nutmeg has a strong flavor, so a little goes a long way. Start with a small amount and add more to taste.
  3. Pair nutmeg with complementary flavors: Nutmeg pairs well with sweet flavors like cinnamon and vanilla, as well as savory flavors like garlic and onions.
  4. Experiment: Nutmeg is a versatile spice that can be used in a variety of dishes, so don’t be afraid to experiment and see what flavors you like best.


Using freshly grated nutmeg is the best way to bring out the aromatic, savory flavor that makes this spice so special.

Whether you’re adding nutmeg to a savory dish or a sweet treat, the freshness of the grated version will make all the difference.

With the help of a few simple tools, anyone can learn how to grate nutmeg and use it to elevate their culinary repertoire. Give it a try today and experience the flavor of freshly grated nutmeg for yourself!

Read Also: How to Make Nutmeg Powder?