Pumpkin Spice And Everything Nice: The Best Holiday Spices For Winter Treats
With the arrival of the holidays, many of us find ourselves in the kitchen trying to get fancy with the spices.
Yet, other than dutifully following the ingredients about which spices to add and when, how much do we really know about all the spices we’re throwing into our seasonal treats?
And what even is pumpkin spice anyway?
Besides being the titular ingredient in the most obsessed over latté that Starbucks has to offer, pumpkin spice, or pumpkin pie spice, is often considered the spice of the season.
Made as a blend of cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, ginger, and sometimes allspice, pumpkin spice is everywhere - from adding flavor to homemade pumpkin pies to roast vegetables, pasta, coffee, and more.
This spice blend takes center stage when all of the other spices deserve some loving, too, for their contribution to the flavors of the holidays.
To make some room in our hearts and our spice shelves for some of the other spices, today we’re sharing more about what makes each spice special - and a holiday recipe you can enjoy with it.
The Essential Holiday Spices - And Recipes You Should Try Them In
Peppermint - One of the most notable flavors of the holidays, peppermint is a cool, minty powerhouse when it comes to desserts. From peppermint hot chocolates to candy canes, the active ingredient of menthol adds a fresh note to a season overloaded with sweet treats. - For a candy cane you can actually take a bite out of, try this Peppermint Candy Cane Tart.
Allspice - Though it may sound like more of a blend than pumpkin pie spice, allspice isn’t actually all of the spices, it’s just one spice: a dried berry from the Jamaican pimento tree. Often combined with other spices from this list (like cinnamon and nutmeg) in sweets, allspice is also a great addition to savory dishes, too, including soups. Unsurprising given its roots, it is also a primary ingredient in jerk seasoning! - Let the allspice shine with this Autumn Spice Cake recipe.
Ginger - While we often think of ginger in its dried, ground form, it is actually an herb. As delicious as an addition to cuisines as it is full of health benefits, ginger’s warm, easily identifiable flavor has made it commonplace among our holiday recipes. - Give the Gingerbread Man a break and instead enjoy this Sticky Ginger Pudding.
Clove - Originally from Indonesia, clove is similar to allspice in its versatility. Throughout the year, it’s used to boost flavorful savory dishes like stews and sauces. Then during the holidays, it pairs up with spices like ginger to elevate gingerbread, fruitcakes, and more. - Let clove take center stage with this Clove Cake recipe.
Cinnamon - Made from the bark of trees native to Sri Lanka and India, cinnamon is a year-round spice that comes alive during the holidays. Not content to just use its warmth for our recipes, its scent is also commonly used in candles and fragrances to make our homes smell like the season. - Indulge your cinnamon cravings with these Cinnamon Roll Cookies.
- Nutmeg - Ground from the kernel of the fruit of tropical evergreen trees, nutmeg is a holiday spice that helps cookies, pies, and other holiday treats stand out. The delicacy it may be most known for? Making eggnog even more delicious. - Enjoy freshly grated nutmeg in this Homemade Eggnog recipe.