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7 Essential spices for Indian Cooking

For everyone who’s grown in an Indian household, one thing that they can relate to is a magic box that grandmas and moms use in the kitchen. It is that magic box that makes food tasty and brings out the flavors of Indian cooking. The mystery box is a pandora of the spices sourced from all over India. India is one of the spice capitals of the world. Hence, spices are the heartbeat of Indian cooking. Spices just not add the heat, it rather enhances the flavor, making each dish aromatic and an experience in itself. In a wide array of spices, there are 7 essential spices that are a staple for Indian cooking.

1. Black Pepper

There is no denying that Black Pepper is the king of spices. Most of the Indian dishes would be unequipped if they lack the pungent taste and aroma of Black Pepper. These tiny little seeds are used to add the needed fire and spice in your meals. Rich in nutrients, Black pepper comes with a lot of health benefits. It helps in improving digestion, increasing metabolism and treating skin problems. Black Pepper is the go-to spice if you want to achieve a perfect health-taste balance.


Turmeric is known as a golden spice as it is widely used in Indian cooking because of the color and aroma it lends to the food. It is also known for its extensive health benefits. In the Indian style of cooking, turmeric is usually added at the beginning and sautéed with other ingredients such as onions, ginger, and garlic.


Cumin seeds are small, crescent-shaped seeds majorly used in their whole form. Having an earthy flavor and strong aroma, cumin seeds lend a smoky taste to the dishes such as da tadka and many Indian dishes. The spice is rich in manganese and also contain anti-carcinogenic properties.

4. Coriander

Coriander plays a vital role in Indian cooking and can be used in its whole or ground form. It has a strong aroma and is one of the most common ingredients used in making gravy and curry recipes. It is one of the most effective ingredients to help in proper blood circulation in the body. Apart from that, its cooling properties help in digestion.


One of the essentials in Indian cooking, Cardamom has a strong, sweet flavor with mild pungency. It has a pleasant aroma with a hint of mint and is used in meat-based dishes, gravies and Indian desserts such as kheer, halwa. It helps to improve your digestion and lowering blood pressure levels as it has immense health benefits.


Having a sweet and earthy flavor, cinnamon powder is mild in taste and most suitable for Biryani, Pulao in most parts of India. It is also widely baked desserts like baklava, churros, cakes, pies and cinnamon rolls. A lot of blends like Chinese Five Spice Seasoning, Garam Masala, and Curry Powder also uses cinnamon. Plus, it adds to the sweetness of your chutneys, jams, and jellies.

7.Nutmeg and Mace

Nutmeg and mace have an earthy, slightly spicy and delicate flavor. It is used in both sweet and savory dishes such as Mughlai cuisine, soups, and desserts like cakes, pies, custards, and puddings. Its oil is also used to treat cough and digestive ailments.

With the right blend of spices in proper proportions, Indian food becomes an experience and elevates not only your body but also your soul. It is the spices that make people all over the world become fans of Indian cooking. It also helps in improving our physical and mental health. From the times of our forefathers to modern times, spices have been a key element of Indian cooking, passed on from generation to generation. With On1y, you can now buy spices in its raw form and grind it into powder with its twist pack or just buy grounded spices with just a click or walk to a store away. Get cooking with On1y.

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