13 Essential Cooking Spices You Need in Your Kitchen

different type of herbs

If you’re not sure where to get started in the kitchen, examining your spice cabinet can be a great place to start. No matter what your cooking skill set looks like, getting familiar with some of the top must-have spices can change your approach to cooking altogether. The right spices and herbs can transform a dish from one thing to another. For instance, with some dill or oregano, your chicken and veggies can become a Mediterranean getaway. If you add cumin and garam masala to the same base ingredients, you can enjoy an Indian dish. There are so many spices available, but with just 13 of the most popular spices, you can open up the world right from your kitchen.

The Role and Origin of Spices

Spices can be made from seeds, fruits, bark, and other plant parts. They help give food flavor, but in some cases, they can even preserve food. Different areas of the world have different spices that are often used, but now, with a global economy, we can enjoy flavors from all over the globe. Spices have a long history of being valuable trade commodities but that’s no surprise because there is one activity that spans cultures: eating!

13 Essential Spices List

Aside from salt and pepper, stock your kitchen with the below spices to get the most out of your cooking endeavors:

  • Cinnamon

Sweet and spicy, cinnamon goes great in desserts and alongside sugar. It adds a unique flavor to all kinds of dishes, making it a chart-topper on the list of must-have spices.


  • Nutmeg

If you want your food to feel warm and cozy, nutmeg is the secret ingredient you’ll need. It adds body to savory dishes while also going great in baked goods and desserts.

  • Bay Leaves

If you find yourself drawn to making sauces and other soups, bay leaves give an earthy, grounding flavor.

Bay Leaves

  • Paprika

From deviled eggs to paella, paprika adds color and warmth to foods from all over the world. You can find hot or smoky versions, too.


  • Garlic Powder

Garlic goes great in almost any savory dish. In its powder form, it’s easy to work with and very potent, so don’t go overboard.

Garlic Powder

  • Onion Powder

Chopping onions gets old fast, but with onion powder, you can get the same flavor without the hassle.

Onion Powder

  • Oregano

Used in Italian food, Greek food, and much more, Oregano is one of the world’s most common spices but for great reason. Keep this stocked at all times.


  • Chili Powder

This is a combination spice but it’s great to add a bit of a kick to tacos, chili, or other soups and stews. Don’t worry, it’s not too spicy.

Chili Powder

  • Curry Powder

Another combination spice, curry powder is one of the best spices to have if you’re trying to get into cooking more Indian food.

  • Cayenne Pepper

Cayenne is a great way to add spice to any dish. It can get pretty hot, so don’t add too much at first.

  • Cumin

One of the most popular spices in Middle Eastern, North African, and Indian cuisine, Cumin is smoky and earthy at the same time.

  • Saffron

We’re unsure if the color or flavor of saffron is better, but this bright yellow spice offers floral notes and a unique mouthfeel.


  • Turmeric

Saffron’s cheaper cousin spice, Turmeric is wonderfully colorful as well and has a pleasant, spiced flavor.


Dash, Pinch, Sprinkle

Once you’ve leveled up your approach to cooking by stocking your kitchen with these must-have spices, you can take the next steps by investing in new appliances and cooking products. Comfee’s product lines offer sleek cooking appliances that are essential to any kitchen. For a cost-effective and chic way to cook, shop our line today.

Our products make it easy to make your favorite soups, pastas, meats, and more. The immersion hand blender is great for creamy fall bisques or interesting dressings filled with spices. Once you’re done with the fun part, throw all the dishes in our mini dishwashers that make cleaning up a breeze. If you’re ready for the fall and winter seasons to get a bit more spicy and delicious, Comfee has you covered.

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