5 BEST Baharat Spice Substitutes in Recipes

Have you heard of Baharat Spice? It is an aromatic, delicious blend of spices that originated in the Middle East and is used to flavor dishes from around the world.

A true connoisseur knows just how to combine the perfect proportions of pepper, cinnamon, cardamom, Bengal gram, and cumin to create a traditional flavor and scent.

However, those seeking something different can find substitutes for the classic recipe or create their own variation.

To help you out, get some knowledge on how to use Baharat Spice in cooking, as well as five of the best Baharat Spice substitutes.

What is Baharat Spice?

Baharat is a traditional Middle Eastern spice blend that gives your dishes an inviting smoky warmth.

It consists of black pepper, cumin, cinnamon, coriander, and paprika, giving it a fragrant bouquet with distinct flavors.

When you first use Baharat on your tongue, you get subtle hints of sweetness and spicy that linger intensely for some seconds.

The blend has an even consistency, so it imparts a smoother flavor as compared to individual spices.

You can use Baharat in both savory and sweet dishes: mix it into sauces or stews; sprinkle on roasted vegetables; add to fruit salad; season grilled meats – the possibilities are endless.

Experiment with different recipes to find one that tone fits your palate best.

5 BEST Baharat Spice Substitutes in Recipes

If you’re looking for an authentic middle eastern flavor boost, baharat spice is the way to go.

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However, if you don’t have it on hand, there are a few great substitutes that can give your recipes a similar taste.

Here are five of our top picks:

1 – Allspice

Allspice is a warm, earthy spice made from a single dried fruit.

It’s often used in Caribbean and Middle Eastern cooking, particularly as the namesake ingredient of baharat, aka seven-spice powder.

Allspice has a woodsy aroma with a hint of clove and an aftertaste similar to peppercorn or nutmeg.

The texture is dry and crunchy, and it can be ground into a powder like many other spices.

In the kitchen, allspice is great for adding flavor to savory dishes like stews, marinades, and rubs; it also adds complexity to sweet baked goods like gingerbread or oatmeal cookies.

If you don’t have baharat on hand, try substituting allspice with garlic powder, coriander, ground cloves, cinnamon, cardamom, and/or nutmeg – just be mindful of quantities used since allspice has a strong character yet subtle taste.

2 – Curry powder

Curry powder is a blend of spices used commonly in Indian cuisine.

It is made up of richly flavored turmeric, cumin, and coriander with added ingredients such as fenugreek, cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, and even chili pepper for added heat.

The flavor is often described as smoky, earthy, and fragrant.

When tasted alone, it can be quite potent, so it must be used in moderation when cooking.

Curry powder can be mixed into many dishes, from curries to stews, and usually replaces the traditional baharat spice when cooked in western recipes.

A little goes a long way with this powerful spice, so make sure not to add too much, or else its hearty flavor will overpower the dish.

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3 – Five-spice powder

Five-spice powder is a unique and fragrant blend of spices commonly found in Asian cooking.

The combination typically includes Chinese cinnamon, cloves, fennel, star anise, and Sichuan pepper.

It is both savory and sweet, with a lingering warm spiciness that can last on the tongue.

A little bit of five-spice powder goes a long way in giving dishes tantalizing complexity.

The texture of the five-spice powder is gritty, like that of any ground spice; however, its aromatics are much more layered when cooked.

The five-spice powder can be used to both marinade proteins and slow-cook veggies.

As an easy alternative, baharat—a Middle Eastern spice mix—can be used as a substitute for five-spice powder in recipes due to its similar flavor profiles.

4 – Ras el hanout

Ras el hanout is a signature North African spice blend characterized by its complex and intense flavor.

It combines an array of fragrant spices, from cumin and coriander to turmeric, to create subtle nuances of sweet, savory, and floral notes with a warming infusion of heat on the finish.

Its texture is that of coarsely ground pepper, as you’ll often find black peppercorns in the mix.

Ras el hanout can be used to marinate meats or vegetables before grilling or baking, added to everyday dishes like rice pilafs for an exotic twist, and mixed into sauces for a piquant boost.

For an easy substitution for baharat spice blends, which might be more difficult to source, simply try using equal parts ras el hanout and dried oregano – experiment until you find a combination that reveals your unique flavor profile.

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5 – Zaatar

Zaatar is an aromatic middle-eastern spice that adds a complex flavor to food.

Its profile is hard to mistake, with earthy flavors of thyme, oregano, sage, and sumac being its most dominant notes.

When crushed, the grains give off an intense herbal scent.

This versatile spice can be used in myriad ways to add depth and complexity to dishes.

It pairs amazingly with grilled meats and vegetables, or it can be incorporated into soups or stews.

If Zaatar is unavailable, baharat is a great substitute due to its similar makeup of warm spices such as cinnamon and nutmeg.

Regardless of how you choose to use it, Zaatar will offer a unique kick of flavour sure to delight any palate.


In conclusion, baharat spice is a unique and flavorful blend of spices used in Middle Eastern cuisine.

When substituting for baharat, consider the flavors you want to bring out most when cooking.

Allspice, Curry Powder, Five-Spice Powder, Ras el hanout, and Zaatar are all great alternatives that can be used to add a unique flavor to your dishes.

Consider mixing and matching ingredients until you find the blend that is perfect for you and your dish.

5 BEST Baharat Spice Substitutes in Recipes

5 BEST Baharat Spice Substitutes in Recipes

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes


  • 1 – Allspice
  • 2 – Curry powder
  • 3 – Five-spice powder
  • 4 – Ras el hanout
  • 5 – Zaatar


  1. Choose a preferred substitute from the provided list.
  2. Follow the cooking instructions for the selected substitute.
  3. Use the correct proportion of ingredients when preparing the substitute.

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