The Spice Cabinet...

Variety is the spice of life! and food to me is nothing without flavor. I like my meals to be full bodied, with a ton of tongue tantalizing taste, and so for me a well stocked spice cabinet is essential. In fact I’m a bit obsessed with herbs and spices, and few things make me happier then discovering a new one to work into my repertoire. Below is my list of must have spices, extracts, vinegars, oils and wines. Depending on your taste, and your likes and dislikes they may not all be must haves for you, I would certainly recommend that you have a specific recipe for any of the more uncommon spices listed before you go out and purchase them, but I assure you some of them really are worth it, especially when you’re in the mood to impress. Of course even I don’t use every single spice in my spice cabinet everyday, and those I’ll list as optional, When stocking your spice cabinet start with the common more every day spices before branching out.


Allspice (whole , ground)
Amchoor Powder (optional)
Anise seed (optional)
Arrowroot Powder (optional)
Basil (dried leaves)
Bay Leaves
Black Pepper (ground and whole peppercorns)
Cajun Seasoning
Caraway Seed (optional)
Cardamom (Ground and/or Whole pods)
Cayenne Pepper
Celery Seed
Chervil (optional)
Chili Powder
Chipotle Chili Powder
Chinese Five Spice (optional)
Cinnamon (ground and whole sticks)
Cloves (whole, ground)
Coriander (ground and/or seeds)
Cumin (ground and/or seeds)
Curry (Powder Sweet and Spicy or Leaves)
Dulce (dried) (optional)
Fennel Seed
Fenugreek Seed
Garlic Powder
Ginger (ground and crystalized)
Garam Masala
Herbs de Province
Jamaican Jerk Seasoning
Japanese Seven Spice (optional)
Kelp (dried)
Lavender (Culinary)(optional)
Lemon Pepper
Marjoram (ground)
Mesquite Seasoning
Mint (dried leaves)
Mustard (powder and seed)
No Salt Seasoning (optional)
Nutmeg (ground and/or whole)
Nutritional Yeast
Old Bay Seasoning (optional)
Onion powder
Oregano (dried leaves)
Paprika (Regular, Sweet, and Smoked)
Parsley (dried flakes)
Pink Peppercorns (optional)
Poppy seeds
Rosemary (crushed leaves)
Red Pepper Flakes
Saffron (optional)
Sage (ground)
Savory (ground)
Sea Salt (I have an assortment of specialty sea salts, Pink Himalayan, black lava Hawaiian, red Alaea Hawaiian, Fluer de Sel. Smoked all of which I recommend, but for starters plain ‘ole sea salt works wonders)
Sesame Seeds (Regular and Black)
Sumac (optional)
Tarragon (dried leaves)
Thyme (ground)
White Pepper (ground)


Chocolate (optional)
Coffee (optional)
Mint Extract
Orange Blossom Water (optional)
Peppermint (optional)
Rose Water


Cococnut Oil
Flax Seed Oil
Grapeseed Oil (optional)
Hempseed Oil
Olive Oil
Peanut Oil
Sesame Oil (Toasted and/or Regular)
Walnut Oil (optional)

Vinegars: I have a nice collection of specialty vinegars and while they’re not everyday staples they are great to have around to dress up vegetables or make quick surprising salad dressings.

Apple Cider Vinegar
Balsamic Vinegar
Blood Orange infused Balsamic Vinegar (optional)
Cherry infused Balsamic Vinegar (optional)
Fig infused White Balsamic Vinegar (optional)
Pear infused White Balsamic Vinegar (optional)
Pomegranate infused Balsamic Vinegar (Optional)
Red Wine Vinegar
Red Raspberry Vinegar (optional)
Rice Wine Vinegar
Ume Vinegar
White Vinegar

Cooking Wines

Red Wine
Dry White Wine