The Top Excellent Substitute For Caraway Seeds You Can Try

Caraway seeds are familiar ingredients to every home cook as it is commonly used in rye bread, mulled wine punch and sauerkraut. With its distinctive taste, the seeds create a unique touch to the normal dishes.

If you seem to be at the stage where you’ve run out of these seeds, and there is no time to rush to the market, we have the solution for you!

Let’s find out the best substitute for caraway seeds for your recipe. If you are working on sherry bread with caraway seeds and wonder what can I substitute for sherry in a recipe then you can also find out the cream sherry wine substitute for your recipe.

What Does Caraway Seed Taste Like?

Caraway seeds are popular in Asia, Europe, and African cuisine. It has a sharp and strong sense of licorice, bitter and nutty taste.

As the seeds have such a sophisticated taste, it is used in a wide range of dishes from sour to sweet ones, especially in bread recipes.

It is also a must-have ingredient in Tunisian harissa, Polish sausage, cabbage stir-fries, or soup. However, you might find yourself in an odd favor where there are no caraway seeds left.

Instead of going amok, you can use other seeds with similar taste to caraway seeds for an alternative.

Substitute For Caraway Seeds

substitute for caraway seeds

Caraway seeds are a versatile seed that can be used in many types of dishes. With its signature strong licorice flavor enhancing the dishes’ tastes, you might think it is hard to find a replacement for such tasty ingredients.

Such common questions we often encounter are: “what can I use instead of caraway seeds in goulash?” or “can you substitute cumin for caraway seeds?”

As all cooking ingredients, caraway seeds can be replaced by other types of seeds which have similar tastes and texture.

Cumin Seeds

Cumin seed is one of the best caraway seeds substitutes, especially in curry recipes. Cumin seeds come from dried seeds of Cumin plants. It is most popular in Indian, American, and Middle Eastern cuisine in the whole seeds or ground form.

Cumin has a similar small oval shape like caraway seeds, but they have various colors such as brown-yellow, black, green, or white. They are commonly used in some dishes such as chili, garam masala, achiote blends, or curry powder.

As with all cooking ingredients, caraway seeds can be replaced by some types of seeds that have a similar taste and texture, you can use the cumin substitute for caraway seeds for curry dishes to improve the taste of sweetness and bitterness in your dishes.

Anise Seeds

Another alternative for you to choose is Anise seeds. This seed is commonly used in Italian, Indian, German, and Middle Eastern cuisine for enhancing the licorice flavor of the whole dish. Anise seeds can be used for dessert, Italian biscotti, and charcuterie.

As Anise and Caraway all come from the carrot family, they also have some resemblances in flavors. However, Anise has a stronger taste of licorice and dryness with a gray color and curve shape.

Therefore, it is recommended that you only use the anise seeds to replace caraway seeds in bread and cookies. When baking bread, you can take half a teaspoon of anise seeds, equal to a teaspoon of caraway seeds.

Dill Seeds

Another cousin of the Carrot family can act as a substitute for Caraway seeds in rye bread – Dill seeds. These seeds are used widely in Eastern Europe with licorice signature dishes such as rye pieces of bread, cakes, or cookies.

The seeds are easily recognized through their oval shape, brown line, and dark in the center.

As Dill and Caraway seeds are part of a family, you can notice similar tastes. Nevertheless, Dill seeds have an earthy and softer taste that balances the dishes. If you’re working on a soup based or bread, you must try out Dill seeds.

Nigella Seeds

If you run out of caraway seeds for your stew recipes, you might want to check out the Nigella seeds for an alternative option. These seeds can also be called black onion seeds, kalonji, or Charnushka.

As you can tell from the name, the seeds are most popular in Indian, Egyptian, and European cuisine for stew or curry recipes and even bread.

The seeds give a licorice taste similar to caraway seeds, making it a potential substitute choice. To use these seeds, you need to toast them first and pair them with allspice, thyme, or coriander.

If you would love a stronger and more noticeable sense of licorice, make sure you use these seeds for your dishes.

Celery Seeds

A popular option that you can use to substitute caraway seeds is celery seeds. Although it is not part of the caraway family, celery seeds are commonly spotted in most family kitchens. That’s why many people also wonder: “Can I substitute celery seed for caraway seeds?”

Celery seeds are taken from the wild celery and produce a taste of earthy and slight bitterness to your dishes. You can use the seeds with tomatoes to create homemade ketchup or combine it with rye slices of bread.

The seeds are also popular with their health benefits, such as a diuretic method to lower blood pressure and treat flu.

Fennel Seeds

Fennel seeds are a great substitute for caraway seeds due to their same root. The fennel seeds appear mostly in Italian and Indian cuisine in some of the most popular dishes, such as Italian sausages or vegan recipes.

With the same oval shape as caraway seeds, fennel seeds also have a carrot family’s signature licorice taste.

However, these seeds have some slight differences with the green-brownish color and meaty flavor. Therefore, using this as a caraway seed substitute helps the dish retain the taste and adds a meaty note.

Star Anise

Star anise seems like a new seed type, but it has been widely known to the Chinese as a spice and medicine. The shape of star anise shapes a star with eight cloves and has a brownish-green color.

Many people describe that the taste of star anise is similar to anise and fennel seeds, which are earthy, licorice, and slightly bitter if you cook a large amount of star anise. You can use the star anise seeds as a caraway seeds substitute in cakes and bread.

Facts About Caraway Seeds

Caraway seeds are a flexible ingredient for cooking and treating illnesses. These slight bitter, licorice and earthy seeds might be utilized as a ground or whole seed for various dishes such as rye bread, curries, stews, and pastries.

You may not know that caraway seeds can also be cooked into a medicinal tea or essential oil for applying on the skin.

They first appeared in ancient Arab as a medical herb as a digestive aid. Then the seeds were exported to England and changed into a culinary ingredient.

These seeds are popular because they have many health benefits such as inflammation reduction, healthier digestion, antioxidants, and even weight loss as they have a lot of nutrients for diets such as iron, calcium, fiber, and zinc.

Other notable nutrients are limonene, pinene that boosts the metabolism, and vitamins such as vitamin A, E, and B-complex to strengthen the body’s immune system.

Due to its great benefits, people tend to combine them in bread and pastries to promote a healthier option. The seeds are commonly used to substitute for caraway seeds in Irish soda bread, biscuits, croutons, French toasts, or muffins.


Caraway vs. Cumin vs. Fennel: Which One Is Better?

As these seeds are part of the carrot family, it might not be easy to compare them. All these seeds have licorice, earthy, and bitter taste.

However, each one has a different taste level and can be more suitable in some dishes than others. For example, cumin has a dry and peppery flavor, which works better with curry than caraway and fennel seeds.

How To Store Caraway Seeds?

Caraway seeds are not permanent ingredients, and they can last to 3-4 years with proper storage. It would be best if you kept the caraway seeds in an airtight container and put it in a cool-temperature place.

The environment should not be humid as well to retain the seeds’ usage. We recommend that you can store it in the fridge for many future caraway seeds recipes.


Nigella seeds

As all home cooks, we want to retain the fresh taste of ingredients for our dishes. Sometimes, we might lack some ingredients for a recipe and need to find different options such as cream sherry substitute.

In this post, we hope you have found the best substitute for caraway seeds for your recipe. Cooking is a great experimental process, and your dish shouldn’t be ruined if there is a missing ingredient.

Kevin Richard

Hi all! I’m Kevin. I spend plenty of time in the kitchen every day because I love cooking healthy and delicious foods for my family and friends. Cooking gives me a chance to be creative and fun. It’s also one of the most meaningful ways to express my love and take care of my little family.

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