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What is the difference between herbs and spices?

2020-10-22 09:49:50

Is pepper actually an herb or a spice? And what about coriander? Or ginger? In other words: what is the difference between herbs and spices? In this blog, we will answer this question and we will tell you more about the application of herbs and spices. 



The difference is in the source and the origin. For example, herbs mainly grow in a moderate climate and are from small, green, herbaceous plants. The leaves and stems are often used for this. Examples of herbs are thyme, basil and parsley.

On the other hand, you see that spices grow in a (sub) tropical climate and are from flower buds, stamens, seeds, fruits, bark and roots. Cloves, for example, come from the flower bud. Saffron comes from stamens. The fruits of plants provide coriander and pepper, for example. Ginger and turmeric come from roots. And cinnamon, for example, is made from the bark.


Besides the differences, there are also similarities. One thing is certain: they are both fantastic seasonings. Not only does it give off delicious scents but they both add a delicious, aromatic twist to any dish. Think, for example, of a touch of cinnamon or vanilla in your oatmeal or yogurt. Or a little bit of clove or bay leaf in stews. And you can make a delicious sauce with, for example, oregano, thyme, basil or sage. Furthermore, herbs and spices are both a feast for the eye. Consider, for example, turmeric or paprika that give any dish a real boost of color. In short, a whole experience for all your senses.

We also see another similarity. For example, both herbs and spices are included in our newest spice blends for at home. Have you tasted them yet?


Now that you know the difference between herbs and spices, it is also helpful to know when to add an herb or spice to a dish. Is that at the beginning or after the preparation? There is no clear answer for this. It differs per herb or spice and of course it also depends on which dish you want to make with it.


We hope to help you anyway. Herbs are added both at the beginning and at the end. For example, thyme is added at the beginning of the cooking process, so that it has time to release its flavor properly. But for example, basil, dill and parsley quickly give off their flavor, so you can best add them at the end of the cooking process.

Spices are often added at the beginning. You can do this by letting a pan get hot with a dash of (olive) oil in it. Then you add spices. To release even more flavor, it is best to crush the spices beforehand. This can be done with the flat side of your knife or you can use a mortar.

If you have any doubts about the application of the herbs and spices, you can always take a look at our product pages. And of course you can always send us an email. 

All in all, herbs and spices ensure that you can easily turn a simple dish into a culinary masterpiece. And we did not even speak about the health benefits and the convenience...


We are very curious about your delicious, creative creations in which you use herbs and / or spices. Share your cooking skills with us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter and you will receive something nice.