What Can I Use Instead of Cumin?

Cumin seeds are quite common in the kitchen. They add a wonderful flavor to food and are also useful in traditional medicine. But did you know that you don’t always need to use ground cumin to make delicious recipes?

What Can I Use Instead of Cumin?

Cumin is a common spice used in cooking. If you don’t have any cumin, there are a few things you can use as a substitute. One is to grind fresh cilantro (or coriander leaves). Another is to use a combination of turmeric, paprika, chili powder, garlic, and ginger. Or you could use curry powder.

This blog post will tell you all about cumin substitutes when to use cumin substitutes, and much more so; if you’re out of cumin or don’t have any on hand, don’t worry; keep reading to gain useful knowledge.

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What Can I Use Instead of Cumin?

When to Use an Alternative to Cumin

If you’re out of cumin or don’t have any on hand, there are a few different spices you can use as a substitute. Here are some suggested substitutions for cumin, depending on what you have available:

  • Allspice: Allspice can be used as a 1:1 replacement for cumin in both ground and whole form. It has a similar flavor profile to cumin, with warm and earthy notes.
  • Chili powder: A mixture of spices known as chili powder often contains chili peppers, cumin, garlic powder, and oregano. While it won’t taste exactly like cumin, it will add similar warm and spicy flavors to your dish. Use about half as much chili powder as you would cumin.
  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon has a sweet and warming flavor that can work well with cumin in certain dishes. Try using cinnamon if you’re making a sweet or dessert-like dish that calls for cumin. Use about half as much cinnamon as you would cumin.
  • Cloves: Cloves have a strong, pungent flavor that can be used with cumin when making savory dishes. You’ll only need to use a small number of cloves to get the desired taste, so start with just a pinch and add more if needed.

Substitute for Cumin in Curry

When it comes to spices, cumin is an essential ingredient in curry. But what do you do when you’re out of cumin and don’t have time to run to the store? Luckily, there are a few substitutes that will work in a pinch. Turmeric is a common substitute for cumin in curry. It has a similar flavor and can be used in the same proportions as cumin.

Another option is to use coriander seeds. These have a slightly sweeter taste than cumin, so you may want to reduce the amount used or add a pinch of sugar to balance out the flavors. Finally, cardamom can be used as a substitute, but it should be used sparingly as it can be quite overpowering.

What Spice Is Most Like Cumin?

Cumin is a spice that is most often used in savory dishes. It tastes strongly of the earth and is a little bit bitter. When substituting cumin for another spice, choosing a spice with a similar flavor profile is best.

Similar to cumin, spices include chili powder, paprika, and smoked paprika. These spices will provide the same depth of flavor to your dish as cumin would. If you do not have these spices on hand, you can also use ground coriander or cloves.

Herbs and Spices That Can Be Used in Place of Cumin

Many herbs and spices can be used in place of cumin. These include coriander, fennel seed, anise seed, and cardamom. Each of these spices has a unique flavor that can add depth and complexity to any dish. When substituting one of these spices for cumin, it is important to start with a small amount and adjust to taste.

Other Seasonings That Can Be Used in Place of Cumin

Many other seasonings can be used in place of cumin. Some of these include:

  • Paprika
  • Curry powder
  • Chili powder
  • Ground ginger
  • Ground cardamom
  • Ground cloves
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Ground nutmeg


In short, no spice can take the place of cumin because of its flavor and aroma. But if you don’t have cumin, then you can use a different alternative that can somehow fulfill the absence of cumin.

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