What’s Cumin? | Diethood


Cumin is a bit seed that packs an enormous taste into quite a lot of dishes from a number of cuisines. This spice is a must have ingredient in your kitchen! Learn extra beneath to seek out out why.

Cumin seeds in a bowl, with a wooden spoon also holding cumin seeds right next to the bowl.

What Precisely Is Cumin?

Cumin is a spice that belongs to the parsley household. Extra particularly, it comes from the dried seed of an herb known as Cuminum cyminum. It’s featured in lots of Latin American, Indian, and Center Jap dishes and different cuisines. Usually, cumin seeds are floor right into a brownish-yellow powder for cooking, however complete seeds are additionally utilized in some recipes (often in Indian dishes). It’s typically included in spice blends, like chili powder or curry powder.

Questioning methods to pronounce the phrase cumin? It’s ceaselessly pronounced “kyoo-min,” however you would additionally say “koo-min” if you happen to favor.

What Does it Style Like?

There are several types of cumin with barely totally different tastes, however total, it’s a heat, earthy, nutty spice with some bitterness to it. It’s typically utilized in savory dishes, however it may be included into candy ones too (i.e. with candy potatoes, fudge, cookies, and so on.).

Sorts of Cumin

Let’s differentiate between some frequent kinds of this widespread spice:

  • White (Cuminum cyminum). That is the preferred and generally used type of cumin – it has a milder style than Black or Bitter cumin.
  • Black (Nigella sativa). A spicier model with hints of sweetness.
  • Bitter. Because the title suggests, that is essentially the most bitter of the three spices.

Entire vs Floor Cumin

As talked about above, you may cook dinner with each complete cumin seeds and floor cumin. The seeds ought to be roasted as a result of that is what brings out the flavour and makes them aromatic. Floor cumin is made by taking these roasted seeds and grinding them right into a powder. Remember that on this powdered kind, it loses its taste sooner. One of the best ways to protect it’s to maintain it in an hermetic container at room temperature, however it should should be changed on occasion.

What Are the Well being Advantages of Cumin?

Cumin is understood to supply a few necessary well being advantages to your physique. It assists your digestion, it’s an important supply of iron, and it has plant compounds that may work as antioxidants to stabilize free radicals, or lone electrons. (These lone electrons may cause irritation within the physique, in any other case.)

Overhead image of ground cumin in a white bowl.

What’s the Greatest Cumin Substitute?

Now that you simply’re an professional on this spice, let’s discuss what you should utilize if it is advisable to change it. These are essentially the most easy substitutes:

Floor Coriander

  • Coriander can also be within the parsley household, and it has an identical earthy taste. It’s a bit milder, although, and lacks the heat/warmth that cumin can convey to a dish. Thus, when subbing with coriander, use half of the quantity directed (i.e. 1/2 teaspoon for each teaspoon or 1/2 tablespoon for each tablespoon) and contemplate including some chili powder in order for you that additional spiciness.

Caraway Seeds

  • One other member of the parsley household! You possibly can change cumin seeds with caraway seeds, or swap floor cumin for floor caraway. Use the identical ratio as above (1:2) when making substitutions. Word that caraway seeds have a citrusy however milder taste, similar to floor coriander.

Chili Powder

  • Chili powder is a mixture of spices that features cumin, paprika, garlic powder, floor cayenne, and extra. Thus, whether it is used as a substitute, it should add additional flavors and a purple hue to no matter you’re making. It ought to be substituted with the identical 1:2 ratio talked about above, and works finest in Mexican/Latin American dishes.

Garam Masala

  • That is one other mix of spices the place cumin is a major ingredient, nevertheless it additionally consists of components equivalent to coriander, cinnamon, nutmeg, and extra. It should add heat and citrusy flavors to your dish, and is finest substituted into Indian meals with the aforementioned 1:2 ratio.

Taco Seasoning

  • One more mix of spices that incorporates cumin (often within the chili powder), garlic powder, crushed purple pepper flakes, oregano, and so on. It additionally tends to incorporate much more salt, which is one thing to pay attention to. Taco seasoning is nice for Tex-Mex and Mexican recipes, and may be substituted 1:2 or 1:1, relying on how spicy you want issues to be.

Curry Powder

  • Curry powder usually consists of cumin, turmeric, coriander, ginger, and cinnamon, amongst different components. It should add a vibrant yellow shade and a few delicate sweetness to your cooking, together with these desired heat, earthy flavors. Curry powder works properly as a substitute in Indian and Indonesian-style recipes. Attempt utilizing the 1:2 substitution ratio, after which alter from there if you happen to’d like so as to add bolder taste.


  • Paprika will add a daring, purple shade to your cooking, however it could nonetheless work properly as a cumin substitute! It’s extra smoky than spicy, so it provides a pleasant, gentle heat to no matter you’re making. It’s an particularly nice substitute in Mexican recipes, and may be substituted 1:2 (like all the above) to start with, until you’d like so as to add extra.

What’s Cumin Used For?

  • You’ll discover cumin in chilis, stews, soups, and even baked items. In fact, it’s typically included into marinades, spice rubs, and sauces as properly. With regard to meat, it really works actually will with beef, pork, hen, and fish. Principally, it doesn’t matter what you’re making for dinner – you may undoubtedly discover a option to put a few of this spice in it!

13 Recipes That Use Cumin

On the lookout for new methods to cook dinner with cumin in your personal kitchen? Listed below are a few of my favourite recipes that characteristic this particular spice!

Cumin rice in a large bowl.

Jeera rice is a simple Indian aspect dish that’s loaded with taste! Made with cumin seeds, recent coriander, cinnamon, and extra, this smooth and fluffy rice is a bit bit candy, a bit bit spicy, and 100% scrumptious.

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Corn Salad with Lime Cumin Vinaigrette

This summer time salad is made with recent cucumbers, juicy corn, creamy avocado, and a tangy lime cumin French dressing! This straightforward salad is full of heat spice and zesty taste – you do not wish to miss it.

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Lime Cumin Chicken Salad with Tomatoes, Olives and Queso Fresco - A huge bowl of flavor-packed, colorful, healthy chicken salad with tomatoes, fiesta blend olives and Mexican cheese.

Juicy, tender, lime-cumin-marinated hen, crisp lettuce, recent tomatoes, and crumbled queso fresco come collectively to create this tangy, earthy, home made hen salad. It is good for a lightweight lunch!

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Skillet burritos being stirred with a wooden spoon.

This tacky skillet burritos recipe is made with a home made Mexican seasoning mix that incorporates smoky paprika, savory garlic powder, wealthy, heat cumin, spicy chili powder, and extra!

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overhead shot of shredded pork pernil in a white serving dish, and garnished with lime slices plus parsley. Corn tortillas are placed to the right, near the serving dish, and a bowl of rice is placed on the opposite side.

Puerto Rican pernil is made with juicy shredded pork that’s seasoned with spicy Serrano peppers, citrusy orange juice, and smoky floor cumin! Serve it over rice or with tortillas.

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overhead shot of a taco bowl with taco meat, sliced bell peppers, avocado slices, beans, and rice, and a fork placed inside the bowl.

These straightforward taco bowls are stuffed with fluffy rice, roasted bell peppers seasoned with floor cumin and smoked paprika, juicy floor beef, creamy avocado, and any of your favourite toppings!

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overhead shot of samosa chaat on a plate, with small bowls with sauces placed around the plate.

This Indian avenue meals snack platter is full of samosas, curry, chutneys, and extra. You may want each floor cumin and cumin seeds to finish this candy, spicy, and savory meal!

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Easy taco soup in a bowl with a lime wedge, jalapeño, and cilantro on top.

Tex-Mex hen taco soup is loaded with juicy hen, vibrant bell peppers, tender corn, and a plethora of spices, together with subtly spicy cumin! It is so comforting and filling.

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pulling out A slice of King Ranch chicken with a spatula.

King ranch hen casserole is essentially the most comforting meal! It is filled with juicy shredded hen, creamy mushroom soup, hen soup, diced tomatoes, and heat floor cumin.

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serving plate holding four country style pork ribs with onions and cilantro on top.

These juicy pork ribs are smothered in barbecue sauce and a home made spice mix containing floor cumin, spicy cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, and extra! They’re good for a cookout.

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A spoon scooping Homemade Taco Seasoning out of a mason jar.

Making your personal taco seasoning with fragrant spices and herbs is very easy! Spherical up floor cumin, chili powder, oregano, garlic powder, and a few different spices and let’s get to it.

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Overhead shot of a bowl with Instant pot short ribs served over mashed potatoes and garnished with parsley.

These prompt pot quick ribs are juicy, tender, and simply out-of-this-world tasty! They’re made with a home made sweet-and-savory barbecue sauce containing earthy cumin, candy brown sugar, smoky paprika, tangy ketchup, and extra.

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eight Grilled Steak Skewers served on a plate and topped with chimichurri sauce

Tender flank steak is rubbed with floor cumin, after which grilled with a spicy, tangy chimichurri sauce that you’ll adore! These beef kebabs will simply turn out to be a household favourite recipe.

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