13 Most Commonly Used Spices in India

13 Most Commonly Used Spices in India

Spices in India are a variety of spices that are grown in different states. Different climates in different states of the country, India produce a variety of spices and some from other native to the subcontinent.

India is the largest exporter of turmeric, peppers and cardamom are some examples of indian spices.

Spices are used in different forms including whole, chopped, ground, roasted, fried and as a topping. Some other spices are used at the end as a flavoring; those spices are heated in a pan with cooking oil before adding into dishes.

Here are the 12 most commonly used spices in India and some benefits.

1. Black pepper(king of spices)

Black peppers is native to India and from the western ghat and other malabar regions. And it is very difficult to grow because it depends on many climate cycles like a set amount of rainfall.

This spice needs to be toasted before blending, for the best flavor and fresh black pepper are also used ground directly into some dishes.

It is also used as a medicine from the past so many years and people also call black pepper a king of spice.

2. Cardamom

In the market there are two types of cardamom used in Indian cooking-green and black cardamom. Green cardamom is more commonly used and easily available in the market.

Green cardamom is used most basically in tea and some other desserts in India. And cardamom has a strong unique taste, with intensely aromatic, resinous fragrance. 

It can be blended whole while making spice mixes (garam masala) used for sweet or desserts making.

Black cardamom are mostly used in soups, for the smoky flavor. It is also used in some chutney and also used in preparing garam masala for commonly used for flavor India curries.

3. Clove 

Cloves have aroma flower buds of a tree, and they are also known as syzygium aromaticum.it can be found in whole and ground forms.

They also have some medicinal properties from the concentration of essential oils.cloves are oils that are healthy used in both cooking or for medicine purposes.

It can be used whole or blended into spice mixes and they need to be used with caution however as they are more power delicate spices.

4. Bay leaf

This spice has an aromatic leaf, which is commonly used in cooking as an ingredient. It has many sources and several plants like bay laurel, indian bay leaf (malabathrum) etc.

Bay leaves are pungent, and sharp bitter tastes with the unique fragrance are noticeable.it also has some great health benefits and some good sources of vitamins, minerals and nutrition.

And their leaves and oil are also used in medicine making.

5. Garlic 

Garlic has been used to flavor dishes. But it does more than add flavor, garlic contains compounds with many potent medical properties.

This spice is highly nutritious with less calories. And their active compounds in garlic reduce blood pressure, improve cholesterol level, and etc.

Garlic is most often used as a flavoring agent but can also be eaten raw or used in many foods like salad, sauces, salad dressing, meat, soup etc.

6. Red chilli

Red chillies are most used as powder form. Powder forms are easily used in many dishes or whole red chili are also used for curries and some fried dishes.

India  is the biggest center for growth and development of spices are punjab, gujarat, uttar pradesh and in other states. 

Red chillies are easily available in any supermarket or grocery store in India in powdered  form.

Also used as a topping or chopped chilies for salad or decoration on dishes. Red chili powder is also commonly used in seasoning  for chips and other snacks.

It also has health benefits like fighting inflammation, maintaining blood pressure etc.

7. Green chilli

Green chillies are most commonly used as a spice or you can say ingredient in Indian kitchen. For making tadka or add spice into food. There are lots of vitamins and benefits to add green chilli. 

They are beneficial for weight loss because they have zero calories and speed up metabolism by 40-50% after eating. 

It also has some great health benefits like protection against cancer, rich in vitamin c etc.

8. Coriander 

Coriander is a spice produced from the round, tan-colored seeds of the coriander.and coriander leaves taste like refreshing, tart.

It was the oldest known spice in the world, and coriander can be used to describe the entire plant-leaves, stems, and Seeds. 

It is commonly used to flavor many dishes or decoration purposes and many spice mixes.

9. Turmeric  

Turmeric is one of the most common Indian spices. It can be used fresh or dried. Turmeric also has some health benefits and uses in many dishes.

Fresh turmeric is slightly stronger than dried. Turmeric is also used for the color food and cosmetics. And fight against inflammation, high cholesterol, liver disease and itching.

It stains easily so make sure you are careful with clothes.

10. Ginger 

Ginger is a flowering plant that originated in asia, which is from the zingiberaceae family.

It is widely used as a spice up meall and also for medicine.

Ginger can be used fresh, dried, powdered or ginger oil and juice. Most common spice in indian cuisine. Also sometimes added to processed foods and cosmetics.

11. Nutmeg 

Nutmeg spice made from the seeds and the spice has a pungent fragrance with a warm slightly sweet taste.

It is used to flavor many dishes and beverages.

Although it’s not only used for flavor, it’s also used for health benefits, because it has a great amount of nutrition and vitamins or compounds that helps to fight against many diseases. 

12. Saffron

The saffron is the most expensive spice in the world, saffron is actually more valuable by weight than gold.

Reason behind the most expensive spice is the labor cost to produce spice. And it is a stigma of crocus flowers and needs to be picked by hand.

Best quality of saffron is dark red in color and comes from Kashmir in india. Fresher the saffron is deeper the color and very unique in flavor.

Saffron is an intense spice that is used in small quantities, usually mixed in water or milk before being added into dishes.

13. Cinnamon 

The Cinnamon is a very delicious spice, which is obtained from the inner bark of several trees. Cinnamon is used for aromatic condiments and adding flavor to a variety of Indian cuisine etc.

It also has some medicinal properties that help to fight against many diseases and there are many health benefits of cinnamon spice like reducing heart disease, preventing cancer etc.

sources : 1, 2.

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