Ras El Hanout Substitute
Ras el Hanout is an ancient Moroccan blend that roughly means “top shelf” and is rich, colorful, and aromatic. This spice blend is used for grilled lamb, vegetable tagines, and couscous. More contemporary versions of using this spice are in lamb burgers or stewing with chicken.
Substitutes for Ras El Hanout
Ras el hanout is a favorite spice for home chefs to perfect their tagine, but there are a wide variety of uses typically in North African cuisines. Although it’s a popular spice blend for a multitude of dishes, it can be hard to find in typical grocery stores which is why you may need a substitute. Some quality substitutes that you can use include:
- Make your own
- Find a great recipe for ras el hanout below
- Combination of 2 parts cumin, 1 part ground Moroccan coriander seeds, 1 part ginger, and 1 part cayenne pepper
- Garam masala
- Curry powder
Common Ras El Hanout Substitution Questions
What is Ras El Hanout?
Ras el hanout is a spice mix that is found in many Northern African countries in varying forms. Ras el hanout generally means “top shelf” and means a mixture of the best spices the seller has to offer. You’ll love ras el hanout in this Braised Beef with Harissa.
Authentic Ras El Hanout Recipe
While you can have a simple ras el hanout substitute using cumin, coriander, ginger, and cayenne pepper, with just a few more ingredients you’ll get a more robust, spice mix that better represents North African cooking. Traditionally, all spices are ground individually before being mixed together, but if you’d like to save time, you can use the pre-ground versions of all spices. For an authentic ras el hanout, you’ll need the following spices:
- 2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 2 teaspoons ground cardamom
- 2 teaspoons ground mace
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground white pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
- ½ teaspoon ground anise seed
- ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
Mix all spices together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Ras el hanout is passed down from generation to generation, so feel free to tweak this recipe to fit your taste.