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Cathy Katin-Grazzini

Cathy's Kitchen Prescription LLC



Ethiopian Spice Blend


Classic dry spice blend vital to so many Ethiopian dishes.  Many versions of this heady mix exist.  Don't fret if you lack a few ingredients, as long as cayenne and fenugreek are included. While berbere is integral to Ethiopian cuisine, don’t limit yourself! Use this tasty spice blend to season and

enliven bean and bean purées, steamed greens and veggies, cooked whole grains, potatoes, salads, grilled fruits -- or wherever your imagination takes you!


When it comes to all ground spices, it’s best to make in small batches as their volatile oils degrade quickly, losing potency and nutritive qualities.


For an oil-free spice rub, lovely on tofu and tempeh, add sufficient water to make a paste and substitute the dried onion and garlic with fresh.




2 Tablespoons sweet paprika

4-8 dried cayenne (or similarly hot) chilis (essential)*

2 teaspoons granulated or powdered onion

2 teaspoons granulated or powdered garlic

2 teaspoons coriander seeds**

1 teaspoon nigella seeds**

1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds (essential)**

1 teaspoon ajwain seeds**

1 teaspoon dried turmeric**

½ teaspoon black peppercorns

¼ teaspoon whole allspice

1 teaspoon seeds from pods of green cardamom**

½ teaspoon cloves

½ teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated

½ teaspoon dried ginger**

½ teaspoon Ceylon a.k.a. true cinnamon


*The number of chilis should reflect your tolerance for heat.


**available in Indian groceries or online




Dry roast all whole spices in a skillet for a few minutes until just fragrant.  Cool.  Grind in spice grinder.  Combine with remaining ingredients. Store excess in a jar with a tight-fitting lid for a few months in a dark, cool cupboard or in the fridge.



Berbere, Ethiopian Spice Blend