Fresh out of your Italian herb blend? Don't panic; our Italian Seasoning Substitute will get you out of trouble and add a touch of Italy to your next meal. A great preservative-free alternative to store-bought blends and just so much more flavoursome!
If you want to add some Mediterranean flavour to your next meal, you can't go wrong with our flavoursome replacement for Italian seasoning.
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What is Italian Herb Seasoning?
You will not see Italian Herb seasoning at any Italian market; it is a westernised version that mimics classic Italian flavours with garlic, basil, oregano and marjoram. It includes a wide variety of spices and has many variations.
So, whether you are looking to add some robust Italian flavour or for a basic Italian herbs mix or for a quick fix to get you out of trouble, then we have you covered!
Our 7 Best Substitutes
If you are stuck and don't have Italian seasoning, we have a few ideas to get you out of trouble - from making your own blend to swapping it for a similar one.
1You Can Make Your Own Blend
Based on what dried herbs and spices you have available in your pantry and how authentic you would like your Italian Spice blend to be:
2Use Mixed Herbs
They make a great substitute as they have many of the same herbs found in Italian seasoning (in bold)- parsley, sage, mint, oregano, thyme and marjoram. Check your recipe to ensure that sage and mint will go well.
3Try Pizza Seasoning
It is another excellent substitute with similar herbs (in bold) - oregano, basil, onion flakes, garlic powder, thyme, fennel and paprika. Check your recipe to ensure that fennel and onion flakes will go well.
4Just use dried basil and oregano.
As they are the two main ingredients in this blend, for every teaspoon of Italian seasoning, use ½ teaspoon each of dried basil and oregano.
5Use fresh basil, oregano and parsley
If you have some fresh herbs in your garden, you can try using them instead. Remember that you will need to double or triple the quantity, as dried herbs are more potent than fresh. Also, add these towards the end of cooking, as fresh herbs lose their flavour faster when cooked.
6 Use a Greek seasoning blend
Another blend that shares similar qualities with Italian seasoning is a strong base of oregano and parsley with some garlic powder/flakes, paprika and dried lemon zest. Check your recipe to ensure the lemon zest will go well in it.
7Try Herbes de Provence
If you have this French classic in your pantry, it can be used as a substitute for Italian seasoning. It contains - thyme, marjoram, tarragon, celery seed, bay leaves, and dried lavender flowers. But the lavender flowers will add a slightly floral note to your recipe, so you must decide if it will work.
Let's Talk Ingredients
With some trial and error, I have found that this combination of dried herbs works well as a substitute for Italian seasoning.
- Dried oregano - will add a warm, peppery flavour to this mixture.
- Dried parsley - has a delicate flavour that combines well with other herbs.
- Dried marjoram - is similar to oregano but not as pungent.
- Dried basil - sweet basil is dried for cooking; it is more pungent when dried and ideal for slow cooking in soups, stews, casseroles and spaghettini bolognese.
- Dried rosemary is a hardy annual herb with a robust pine-like flavour that compliments rich and full-flavoured foods.
- Dried thyme - make sure you use dried thyme and not ground thyme. Your measurements will be different if you change this up!
- Garlic powder or garlic granules - as they are more mellow than actual garlic cloves, so perfect for seasoning.
- Paprika - made from dried red peppers that have been ground to a powder. It has a vibrant colour and full-bodied flavour.
- Crushed red pepper flakes or Chilli flakes - for a warming bite and delicious capsicum taste.
You Will Need
Making Your Own Seasoning
- Place all the spices in a small bowl and mix well until thoroughly combined.
- Store in an airtight container and keep it in a dark spot in your pantry or spice drawer until you are ready to use it.
Uses for Italian Herbs Mix
Use our Italian seasoning substitute to add Italian flavour to classic dishes like -
- Eggplant Parmesan
- Spaghetti Bolognese
- Crispy Chicken Parmesan Chicken
- Zucchini lasagna
- To make Italian pasta sauces such as Passata or spaghetti sauce
Or you can try our Italian seasoning in a tomato-based sauce and add it to meatballs and crumbs for schnitzel or as a spice rub for grilled chicken, steak or lamb.
Common Questions (FAQs)
Making your own spice blends lets you control what goes into them. It helps control your sodium levels and helps you avoid preservatives, additives and MSG that can be found in any store-bought Italian seasoning. It will also allow you to adjust the flavour to suit your personal preferences.
Absolutely; if you have a herb garden, this is a great way to use up your bumper crop by drying the herbs yourself. You can also make this blend with fresh herbs, but you will need to use it within a couple of days and keep it in an airtight container in the fridge, as it will not keep for long.
Store it in a tightly sealed glass container in a cool dark place in your pantry or spice drawer.
If stored as suggested, your Italian blend should keep for approximately twelve weeks.
Our Italian Seasoning Substitute is suitable for all eating styles and contains 3kcals per teaspoon with net carbs of zero per serve!
(We used a nutritional database to make our calculations, so these should be considered an estimate only).
Try It in These Salads
Other Seasoning Mix Recipes To Try
- 2 tablespoons dried oregano
- 2 tablespoons dried parsley
- 1 tablespoon dried marjoram
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 2 teaspoons garlic granules or powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon red chilli flakes
- Place all the spices in a small bowl and mix until thoroughly combined.
- Store in a tightly sealed glass container and keep it in a dark spot in your pantry.