How to Make 7 Spice

5 from 303 votes

This tutorial shows how to make Lebanese 7 Spice with basic pantry spices; use it in many Middle Eastern recipes for more authentic flavoring

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Here is how I make Lebanese 7 spice. Keep in mind, every cook puts a different spin on this traditional Levantine mix. And, while totally essential in recipes like Beef Kafta and Lebanese Stuffed Grape Leaves, it also adds depth to all sorts of grains, and pairs well with dishes like Roasted Butternut Squash Soup.

Lebanese 7 Spice in glass spice jar with some of the spice spilled

What is seven spice?

First, the Arabic word for spices is “baharat.” So, we often refer to the Lebanese seven spice mix simply as baharat and use the terms interchangeably. Baharat is sort of like the Indian mix garam masala. Most importantly, 7 Spice is not to be confused with the Japanese seven spice, or shichimi, a totally different combo of spices.

What’s in Lebanese 7 spice?

Even within the Lebanese community, 7 Spice variations abound between manufacturers and family recipes. Sometimes the mix includes cardamom, paprika, ginger, or fenugreek. Additionally, some cooks roast and grind whole spices. But for convenience, I go with ready-made ground versions for the following:

  1. Allspice: Contrary to its name, allspice is not a combination of all spices, but the ground powder of the dried berry of a type of myrtle tree called pimenta dioica. It looks like a peppercorn.
  2. Black pepper: If you have a pepper grinder, this is one spice that is really marvelous when freshly ground.
  3. Cinnamon: Everyone’s favorite. Some western palates associate it with sweet dishes, but cinnamon has many savory uses.
  4. Ground cloves: Highly fragrant, cloves come from the flower bud of an Indonesian tree.
  5. Coriander: Coriander comes from the ground seeds of the cilantro plant.
  6. Cumin: A signature spice of middle eastern cuisine, cumin is the seed of a plant in the parsley family.
  7. Nutmeg: The seed of a tropical evergreen tree, whole nutmeg is easy to powderize if you have a Microplane zester.
All the spices to make Lebanese 7 Spice in small pinch bowls

How to make seven spice mix

  • First, measure out your individual ingredients.
  • Second, mix together until well combined.
  • Finally, decant the mixture into a tightly lidded jar of some sort (a funnel helps) and store for up to six months in a cool, dry place.
Two image collage showing all the spices together in one bowl before and after mixing

Recipes with 7 spice:

Frequently asked questions

I am missing an ingredient, can I make baharat with six spices?

Go for it! I won’t tell. The great thing about this mix is you can customize it to your taste, adding a little more of one ingredient, a little less of another, or eliminating something completely.

Which spice, or spices, do you consider absolutely essential for 7 Spice?

Of course, everyone has their favorite flavor profiles! For me, allspice, cinnamon, and black pepper are the non-negotiable elements of Lebanese seven spice.

What are some other ways you use Seven Spice?

Baharat makes a great basis for a dry marinade or spice rub when grilling chicken. It enlivens rice pilaf and couscous dishes, too.

Lebanese 7 Spice in glass spice jar with some of the spice spilled

This custom, homemade 7 Spice lets me flavor my food exactly the way I like it and makes any Lebanese dish super authentic.

For more cooking tutorials:

If you’ve found this cooking resource for How to Make Seven Spice helpful or if you’ve tried any recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience with this technique. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

How to Make 7 Spice

This tutorial shows how to make Lebanese 7 Spice with basic pantry spices; use it in many Middle Eastern recipes for more authentic flavoring
5 from 303 votes
Servings 40 servings
Course Spices
Calories 2
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 0 mins
Total Time 5 mins

Ingredients
  

  • 1 tablespoon Allspice
  • 1 tablespoon ground coriander
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 ½ teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cloves
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground nutmeg

Instructions

  • Mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl until well combined.
  • Store for up to 6 months in a cool dry place.

Notes

Storage: Store the spice mix in an airtight spice container in a cool and dry pantry for up to 6 months.
Photo Credit: Erin Jensen

Nutrition

Calories: 2kcal, Carbohydrates: 1g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 1mg, Potassium: 5mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 5mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

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Lebanese 7 Spice in glass spice jar with some of the spice spilled

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Comments

  1. You say its 40 servings. How big is a serving. Is a serving one person or a specific measure?

    Fantastic flavour

    Thanks

    1. Glad you’re enjoying the flavor of this recipe! Rather than going by the 40 servings, I would use it based on how many teaspoons/ tablespoons the recipe calls for.

  2. I made your spice mixture and used it in an Egyptian meat pie (Egyptian goulash) recipe. It worked as I expected. It gave the dish a nice subtle but not over-powering flavor.

  3. Hello Yumna, I was looking at the 7 spice ingredient list and oddly it’s a bit similar to Garam Massala a spice blend we use in Indian cooking I think I will try it in Tikka masala

  4. Hi, what if i didn’t have nutmeg and cinnamon powder? I have all spices, white pepper, black pepper, cumin powder, coriander powder and ground cloves only. What else should i add?

    1. You could probably use more allspice instead of nutmeg, and you can try using ground cloves instead of cinnamon powder. It won’t quite be the same, but it should work!

  5. Just made this to make a Lebanese mince dish – “lahm bi ajeen or meat pie” originally. The spice amounts are perfectly balanced (which is unusual in internet land), so thank you for your efforts and for saving me £4 buying online 😉

  6. I’ve always loved Syrian food . I was first intrduced to middle Eastern food by the ladies of Grand Rapids, MI. There is a large Syrian population. I love to garden ànd I always planted Kousa for my Syrian friends. I also planted weld grape vines for stiffed.

  7. I’m mixing some of this right now! Is its intensity affected by long exposure to heat (in cooking)? I’m going to have to use my slow cooker today to make up some Kousa casserole, and am wondering if I should add it in late. Advice appreciated, and thank you for your work!

        1. While I don’t have a recipe for Allspice on my website, there are quite a few recipes out there on the internet! It’s usually a mix of cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg at a 1:1:1 ratio.

          1. Allspice is not a combination of spices. It is one spice that originally comes from the Caribbean/Mexican/central American region. It was named allspice by the British because its flavor is reminiscent of a combination of several other spices: cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, etc. You would only need a recipe for allspice if you lived someplace where it was not easily attainable. Otherwise, simply look for it the spice section of the supermarket. You can buy it either ground or whole and grind it yourself.

  8. Very good, I used it in a paleo wild boar meatloaf. Flavor was quite nice. When I first put the spice mix together the smell was mild, but once cooked the flavor really came through. I freshly ground the coriander, nutmeg, and allspice versus using pre-ground.

  9. In your beautiful images for this recipe, one image shows spices in seven separate prep bowls. Another image shows eight spices arranged in separate mounds in one large bowl. What is the eighth spice?

    1. Actually it’s only 7. It might be the shadows making it seem like an 8th spice but only 7 are pictured 🙂