8 Tips to Make Great Homemade Spice Mixes

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Seasoning Blends are a great way to spice up any dish, but they can be pricey and aren’t always exactly what you want, or don’t work with your dietary needs. In this post, I’m sharing tips for how to make your own spice mixes so you can be a spice mixing master in no time.

Grab these 8 great tips for spice blend making and start adding some literal spice to your meals tonight!

six spice jars with different spice mixes

Making your own spice mixes is something I’ve done for a long time. I just love the creativity and the simplicity–and the taste. It’s a simple way to make a big change in your budget and in the flavor of your meals.

If you’re new to DIYing you’ll love the satisfaction of making something yourself that’s so easy, and if you’re not new to Homemade stuff, it’s still a great thing to do.

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Why Make Your Own Spice Mixes

Before we get into the tips about how to make your own seasoning blends, let’s talk about why you should do it.

Save Money

Companies charge more for spice blends than for individual spices. So especially if you use a lot of spices and buy them in bulk, you’ll save so much mixing your own blends.

Control Over Ingredients

Whether you have food allergies or sensitivities, or want to avoid fillers (like starches and flow agents), or want to eat only organic, making your own spice blends is perfect. Sorting through ingredients on spice labels can be a harrowing experience for anyone on a special diet.

When you make your own spice mixes, you can easily customize for special diets, taste, source organically and/or wild-crafted if desire, and avoid fillers.


When you make your own seasoning blends, they are typically much fresher than store bought. Especially when you grind the individual spice ingredients yourself (like cumin and coriander), the flavor of the blends will really shine.

Things You’ll Need to Make Your Own Spice Blends

Making your own spice mixes/seasoning blends is really easy, but there are a few tricks that will help you have better success.

You can either make your spice blends completely from scratch, or you can use other recipes as a starting point. Either way, you’ll want to have the following things on hand:

  • spices (of course!)
  • jars or other preferred containers (note that a 4 oz. jar will hold about ½ cup of spice blend)
  • bowls for blending
  • measuring spoons and / or cups
  • spice grinder
  • spoon for stirring (measuring spoons could do double duty here)
  • labels for the jars (optional but super helpful)

spices mixed together and spoonful of spices collage with text overlay

What Are the Best Spice Jars

There are so many jars to choose from–which one should you choose? One could get a major headache trying to decide.

Well, I haven’t tested all of them (maybe in the future??) but a reader wrote in to tell me that she bought these spice jars and loves them. She said that she loved them so much that she bought two sets!

It has great reviews and they check out on Fakespot…..a great idea to try them if they fit what you are looking for!

How to Make Your Own Spice Blends

Use a Store Bought Spice Blend as Your Foundation

One great way to make your own spice blend recipe is to develop one from a blend you already love.

Just read the label of your favorite blend, gather the ingredients, and get going.

Ingredients are listed by volume from highest volume to lowest, so while you won’t have the exact measurements to use, you can make good guesses. You can use other similar recipes in cookbooks or online to guide you as to what the likely proportions are, or just play around until you get what you like.

For example, if your favorite spice label says, “parsley, onion powder, garlic powder, black pepper”, you could start with 1 tablespoon parsley, 1/2 tablespoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon onion powder, and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, and see how that tastes.

Combine Several Recipes to Make Your Own

Piggybacking off of other recipes is a great way to make your own spice blends.

Either pick one recipe to copy or tweak, or combine a few recipes that look good and meld them together to make your own recipe.

When combining several recipes, add up the ingredients of all of the recipes on a spreadsheet, and then divide the ingredients by the number of recipes you used.

Looking at a bunch of recipes online can be a great starting point. Often you’ll find something really special in one or two to make your recipe shine.

When looking up recipes online to use as a starting point, check the reviews. However, that can be tricky since some bloggers falsify reviews by changing wording or star reviews (terrible, eh?), and some reviews are not that helpful.

For example, “that looks so great” is not as valuable of a review as “I made this for my family and we all loved it.” However, again, if the wording of the reviews have been edited by the blog owner, then those rave reviews don’t mean much.

Side note: I never do that kind of thing, so if you see a good review on my site, it’s legit ;).

Develop a Blend from a “Recipe” You Regularly Use

Do you always use the same combination of seasonings on your veggies, eggs, or salad?

Simply make a larger version of what you already use and place it in a jar and viola–your seasoning blend is ready for you the next time you need it.

Add Some Sweetener

While not necessary, adding just a pinch of sweetener to your spice blend can give great results. I know some might bristle at this. For example, I sometimes get asked, “Do you really need to put a sweetener in everything?!”

The answer is no, I don’t have to do it, and you don’t have to either, but often it’s a great idea.

The slight bit of sweetness balances the spices and adds a little something to it, in the same way that a little salt brings out sweetness (think salted caramel and salted chocolate–yum!) Depending on the sweetener that you use, it can also promote caramelization for cooked dishes, creating a tasty crunchy brown finish.

Add Some Salt

Salt is a great foundation for many seasoning blends, but don’t use too much of it. Salt should enhance the flavors of herbs, peppers, and sugars without overwhelming it.

Of course, you can omit the salt if needed and allow people to add their own to taste, depending on the blend.

Toast Your Seeds

To enhance the flavor of your blend, make sure to toast spices like cumin, coriander, fennel seeds, clove, whole peppercorns and other larger spices in a pan over medium heat. This will add an huge depth of flavor to your homemade spice mix.

Grind the Spices

Use a coffee grinder to grind ingredients like peppercorn, cumin, coriander, and larger dried herbs like basil, rosemary, sage, and bay leaves into a fine powder. Not only will your seed ingredients (peppercorns, fennel, cumin, coriander) be a lot fresher, but your ingredients will mix more easily and larger ingredients won’t sink to the bottom of your jar.

Test Your New Spice Blends the Right Way

Of course you are going to want to test your spice blend blend before putting the final stamp of approval on it. It’s great to do this using small batches of plain foods. Scrambled eggs, rice, or cauliflower rice are great options for this.

Store Your Blends Properly

Make sure to store your blends in an airtight container, preferably glass. Mason jars work well and of course everything is better in a mason jar.

If your spices happen to clump, you can blend them using a spice grinder or mortar and pestle before using them. Alternatively, you can store your spice blends in shaker jars, adding a few dried beans to each jar to absorb any moisture.

Any homemade blended seasonings where you ground any seed spices fresh will have the best flavor within two weeks, but if you store them airtight, they should do quite well for longer than that.

Where to Buy Spices

My two favorite places currently are Frontier (check out how reasonably priced this bulk cinnamon is) and Starwest Botanicals.

If you’d like more ideas to stimulate your imagination, this post has 35 Homemade Spice Mixes plus tips on how to use them. From savory to sweet, there’s something for everyone.

jars filled with spices

How To Make Homemade Spice Mixes

If you'd like to learn how to make homemade spice blends, you've come to the right place. Whether you're an old seasoned pro or a beginner, you're sure to learn something from these tips.
5 from 3 votes
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Course: How to
Keyword: how to make homemade spice mixes
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes


  • jars
  • measuring spoons
  • Bowl


  • various spices


  • Develop recipe using tips above.
  • Toast seed spices.
  • Grind larger spices and herbs.
  • Combine spices.
  • Store in airtight containers.

Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is merely an approximation. Optional ingredients are not included and when there is an alternative, the primary ingredient is typically used. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site. Erythritol carbs are not included in carb counts since they have been shown not to impact blood sugar. Net carbs are the total carbs minus fiber.

Some of Our Favorite Homemade Spice Mixes

Here are some of my favorite spice mixes that we make all the time. I highly recommend you try these.

Taco Seasoning

(you’ll never buy packets again!)

homemade taco seasoning in glass jar on top of colorful pieces of cloth

Chili Powder

(super basic – no special peppers needed)

pinterest image for best chili powder post with chili powder on a glass jar, on a spoon and on a clear glass bowl

Chaat Masala

(so good, our Indian friends wanted the recipe!)

homemade chaat masala in jar with measuring spoon

AIP Taco Seasoning

(a no nightshade twist for your tacos and more)

aip taco seasoning in white bowl and ingredients on spoons

All-Purpose Seasoning (aka Vegetable Broth Powder)

(this recipe is simply amazing. One of our all time favorites–and soon to be yours!)

Vegetable Broth Powder in a jar

Pumpkin Pie Spice

great in so many things

pumpkin pie spice blend in jar

The “Best” Cinnamon Sugar Recipe (keto option)

this quest for the best surprised all of us!

healthy cinnamon sugar with text overlay

Mild Homemade Curry Powder

homemade curry powder in glass jar

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  1. 1. Slice Jalapeños and tomatoes (de-seed) and then smoke them over a fire. Apple or wild cherry wood works great for me.
    2. Then put in dehydrator over night.
    3. Spice grinder the next day.
    4. Back in dehydrator over night.
    5. Spice grinder one more time if needed.
    Note: If this is too hot for you, just add green peppers to taste in step 1.
    You’ll thank me later for this.

  2. Do you have a seasoning recipe that does not include onion or garlic. My sister is allergic to onion and garlic. I am always reading labels for her to find a seasoning that does not have these but all seem to have one or the other. I could make seasoning for her if I had a recipe. Thanks for much.

  3. Hi;
    I make my own (ABSOLUTELY HEAVENLY!) mixed-pepper powder, which requires about three to five days of work, but when I grind it all up the powder clumps as it sits in the spice container so it is one semi-hard block when I try to use it. What can I use as an anti-caking agent? I have tried a little bit of Gluten-free flour mix, but wondered if corn starch would be better. Any ideas. Thank you – – and thanks for this WONDERFUL! site.

    1. I think if you add some dried rice or beans that should help. Sounds great! Thanks for the kind words!

    2. When I make seasoning powders, I find that putting them back into a dehydrator for a few hours makes them perfect. What happens is that any moisture inside the pieces is released when you powder them, so there are little moist edges all over. Just spread it on a cookie sheet in the oven with the light on if you don’t have a dehydrator. 🙂

  4. Hi! “Apple Pie Spice” Combine, by volume:
    7 parts ground cinnamon
    6 parts ground coriander
    5 parts ground allspice
    4 parts ground ginger
    3 parts ground nutmeg
    2 parts ground mace
    1 part ground cloves
    I prefer, personally, to make things up by weight rather than volume but I haven’t found a good source of info on weights small amounts of herbs and spices, so I stick with the old-fashioned by volume. Several things to note: Fresh-ground spices usually have much stronger flavor than those that have been stored. Finely ground spices will have more ‘bang for the buck’ than coarsely ground. And if you know you prefer less (or more) (or none) of a particular flavor, change the proportion. Last, when you make up a batch, do a taste test, the short instructions for which are: melt a small amount of butter in a small skillet, add a small amount of the spice and saute briefly. Then add several slices of good apple and saute a little while longer. Then add a little sugar, cook a little while longer, then remove from heat. Set aside two small amounts and refrigerate the rest. Taste one of the reserved amounts while it is still hot (well, very warm) and note flavor pluses and minuses. When the second has reached room temp, taste that, and again note the flavor highs and lows. Last, once it is chilled, taste the refrigerated part and again note the flavor points. This test will serve two purposes: you will know what the flavor differences are in case you are making a dish served at room temp or hot or cold; and you will know, if you ever make another batch, what you might want to do to improve it. The formula above is what I work with these days, but the original can be found under then name “Mixed Spice Blend” from The Rosemary House, given in Herb Mixtures & Spice Blends, ed. By Deborah Balmuth. // Separate comment: My personal preference is for Frontier Spices, and whatever herbs I haven’t grown myself.

  5. I would really like to know where to find the container with all of the little compartments to put all the spices in

    Thank you
    Happy Spicing

  6. I buy bulk spices all the time at my local Natural Home Market, In fact when it comes to unusual spices that I only occasionally use I will specify out only 1-2 tab. and buy only what is needed so I do not have them hanging around. Serously I have over 50 spices and blends in my culinary arsenal. I regularly make my own rubs for ribs, pork shoulders, chicken and wild salmon. I have the recipes written out and taped right to the jars (cover the recipes with packing tape so they stay clean) so as I run out I can quickly whip up another batch. Ie: St Louis and Memphis style rib rubs, spicy BBQ chicken (Paul Prudhomme’s recipe), the salmon rub is to die for used with planked (cedar or alder) wild salmon and then brushed with a soy, garlic, ginger, maple syrup reduction. OMG! I also have friends bring me unusual spices and mixtures from around the world. I recently recieved Hickory Smoked Salt and Saffron form the Middle East. Pinterest is a great source for rub mixtures I even have a board for rubs and seasonings. Also the international foods section of the grocery store is great for less expensive spices (Mexican especially) I have never had a problem. Also swap unusual spices with you neighbors. I recently had a neighbor borrow cardamon and I borrowed celery salt from another neighbor. Foodies unite!. I also have the community herb garden and encourage neighbors to help themselves. The more herbs are clipped the better they do. This summer we had over 15 different herbs including 5 differnt basils, 2 different thymes, and the staples: Parsley, sage rosemary, chives, real peppermint (not spearmint) as well as greens like kale, arugula and sorrel. Educate others when you can..

  7. I appreciate your providing this mix. I’ve yet to run across a masala recipe that doesn’t call for whole spices that you have to grind. I don’t mind that except I already have all the spices ground. And since I too am frugal…..:D

  8. jars and canned products do not agree well with me and i avoid.
    i realllllyyy miss chicken with bbq sauce!!!
    What can i do to sub the tomato paste in this recipe?
    Do you have any recommended homemade bbq sauce recipes for chicken (without jars/cans, and without sugar/sweets/fruit [i avoid that too])

  9. please email the answer…I was trying to get Davette’s base spice recipe and could not open up her website. Do you have the base recipe?

    thanks so much, love your site!

    1. Davette’s Base Spice Recipe

      1 cup Celtic Sea Salt, fine grind OR
      1 cup Himalayan Pink Crystal Salt, fine grind
      1/3 cup Garlic powder
      1/4 cup ground Black Pepper

      1.Measure all of the ingredients into a 1 gallon size zip seal bag and seal. (save yourself a headache and get the bags that are easy to seal; you could also just whisk it together in a mixing bowl.)
      2.Shake the bag until the ingredients are well mixed. (once you are sure the bag is sealed, you can have your kids do the shaking for you.)
      3.Pour into an empty spice shaker or salt shaker and you are ready to go. If there is more left than will fit into your shaker, keep it in zip-seal bag and refill as needed.
      4.*If you would like more seasoning and less salt, increase the garlic powder to 1/2 cup and the pepper to 1/3 cup.

  10. I’ve used spices from https://www.pureandnaturalspices.com (Marshall’s Creek Spices). I’ve never gotten them through mail order, but they’ve been setting up shop at a local flea market for years and I buy a good portion of my spices from them. My favorite from them is a blend they make called Essence (like Emeril’s). They have a good selection and seem to add to it all the time. Thanks for this posting!

  11. Hello again, Adrinne – so if those aren’t your spice storage containers pictured above, what do you store your spices in? I would love to buy bulk, but I just have a small pantry and haven’t found a good bulk system that works yet – bags of spices in a shoe box just doesn’t seem to cut it… 🙂 Thanks!

  12. I order from Penzey’s Their stuff is fresh, bright and amazing quality and their prices are so reasonable. check out the web site. Penzeys.com

    1. Hi Karen. I used to go to Penzeys all the time, but I will say that I have recently switched to Frontier and Mountain Rose Herbs (and the occasional Costco purchase). We have done several taste tests here (blind :-)) and Frontier won every one. I like that I can get organic spices from them or Mountain Rose Herbs for the same price (or less) than Penzeys. I did love the experience of going to Penzeys, however.

  13. Thank You Adrienne!

    For the sandwich sprinkle, to the Base Seasoning [https://davettebrown.com/time-saver-tuesday-tip] add 2 Tbsp. Paprika and 2 Tbsp. Onion Powder. Everything can be adjusted to your taste (you could up that to as much as 1/4 cup each).

    1. Whatever you like – thank you! However, perhaps a link would be best. Then, if my family likes it, I can write a post on it and link to you :-). You are also welcome to email me at wholenewmom at gmail dot com.

  14. I love making my own seasoning blends. My all-purpose version my son has nicknamed “the Sprinkle”, goes on just about everything that isn’t sweet, but he especially likes putting it on his sandwiches. (He wants me to leave the recipe to him in my will, lol) I’m going to try you curry blend, because I don’t like spicy either.

    Up here in Alaska everything costs more, but especially the spices. Even with shipping it is generally cheaper to order them. (I like Penzey’s and Mountain Rose, too.)

    1. Hi Davette – Would you mind sharing your “Sprinkle” recipe :-). How cute!

      And Alaska – how wonderful. I have always thought how much I would love to visit there. A family from our neighborhood moved there a few years ago and one of our local ice hockey players (professional) is from there as well. Take care, ~ Adrienne

  15. I like Penzeys but spend too much. Local Fred Meyers store has bulk spices and it is much cheaper and fresher than buying those little bottles. I mix a general Italian marjoram, basil, oregano, etc However big use is a cinnamon, nutmeg sugar (splenda ) for toast, pancakes, waffles, cakes.

    1. Thanks for sharing! We used to make our own cinnamon sweetener blend as well so you have reminded me of something that we have forgotten about!
      Have you ever tried Mountain Rose Herbs or Frontier brands? They have organic for less money than Penzeys, which only carries conventional. By the way, just in case you aren’t aware and are trying to avoid sugars, did you know that the filler in Splenda is, in fact, sugar? I have met people who had diabetic reactions after eating it. Take care.

  16. Ya know, I usually only make my own when I run out of the stuff I bought and needed it right away. It really does make better sense to make my own. We stopped using lemon pepper seasoning specifically because it had MSG in it…I’m sure homemade would taste much better too! Thanks for the post!

    1. No, but it’s really neat, isn’t it? If you see the photo credit at the bottom you can see it isn’t mine.
      The photographer stated that it is made from hardware containers that are typically used to hold tools. Cute, but probably not what I would choose as they are not food grade :-).

  17. Where do you get your bulk spices? So far I’ve found Harvest Health to be cheaper than the grocery store. I wasn’t sure if you had other sources.

    1. We order from a variety of places including Frontier products. There are some great sources on my resources page.

    2. I buy my bulk herbs through Azure Standard, along with all of my groceries and I LOVE them!! Check them out at the website as well as on Facebook!