Best Curry Powder Substitutes

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When you think of curry powder, you immediately think of Indian food. But, add curry power to practically any meal and prepare to be wowed by a delectable combination of spices. If you don’t have it on hand, there are many of curry powder substitutes.

Curry powder has been used since the 1700s. It was created originally to imitate the excellent primary Indian curry tastes. Since it imparts warm, spicy undertones, it has been a mainstay in many cuisines and dishes throughout time.

Curry powder is so flexible that a pack may be consumed rapidly. If you run out of curry powder, there are several terrific, savory options that may surpass your expectations.

What Is Curry Powder? 

Curry powder, a complex spice combination, is now widely available around the globe. Cumin. Turmeric, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, and black pepper are the main ingredients in this spice blend. And when combined, they provide savory overtones with a rich scent and a warm flavor.

It is utilized in a variety of traditional cuisines because to its fragrant and tasty spice combination. Nonetheless, it is most often utilized in meals like butter chicken, shrimp fried pilau rice, and potato samosas. Nonetheless, it is often used in stews, soups, pasta bakes, and a variety of other dishes.

Curry powder is not only delicious, but it is also high in nutrients. It has anti-inflammatory qualities, as well as other health advantages.

Curry Powder Substitute

Since curry powder comprises a range of spices, it may be difficult to substitute. This is when having a few curry powder substitutes on hand comes in helpful. These are some of the best curry powder replacements for your next dish.

1. Garam Masala

Garam masala, like curry powder, is a mix of warm spices. It also contains cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, and other spices.

But, since garam masala does not include turmeric, your meal will lack a musky, earthy taste. Yet, the tastes of garam masala continue to work well in curries, stews, and other dishes.

Begin by substituting a teaspoon of garam masala for a teaspoon of curry powder. Then, as required, modify the amount.

2. Ground Cumin

You almost certainly have cumin in your cupboard. Since it blends warm and spicy characteristics, ground cumin is the finest curry powder alternative.

Yet, it lacks the tanginess that distinguishes curry powder. To add a delicious punch to tomato-based meals like stews, use ground cumin. It also contains a lot of nutrients including manganese and iron.

For every teaspoon of curry powder, add one teaspoon of powdered cumin. Tweak until your dish is exactly right.

3. Curry Paste

The majority of individuals mix up curry paste and curry powder. They are, however, not the same. Curry paste is a spice combination that has been ground into a paste consistency. Nonetheless, it is a fantastic curry powder replacement.

Thai, Jamaican, and Madras curry pastes are only a few examples. Depending on the kind of curry paste, they are often bright red to orange. Nonetheless, it usually has a deep, meaty scent with a strong and acidic taste.

For a deeper taste, add it to curries, stews, and soups. Curry paste may be used in lieu of curry powder at a 1:1 ratio.

4. Chaat Masala 

Chaat masala is a spice mixture that includes crushed asafetida, cumin, coriander, and other spices. Its fiery flavor made it famous in Indian cuisines. It incorporates mango powder, as well as rich spices, to give it a sweet and tangy taste.

It’s excellent for adding savory tones to stews and curries. If you have a poor tolerance for spicy spices, chaat masala may not be a smart choice.

Begin with a tiny quantity since chaat masala has a stronger flavor than curry powder. We propose substituting a teaspoon of chaat masala for one teaspoon of curry powder.

5. Sambar Powder

Sambar powder is produced using the same spices as curry powder. Yet, the spices are present in varying amounts, resulting in a more fragrant and strong taste.

Sambar powder, like curry powder, is high in nutrients such as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory qualities. It also contains tangy, flavorful, and somewhat spicy overtones from the chile, cumin, coriander, and other spices.

This substitution will improve your recipes. To begin, substitute curry powder with a 1:1 ratio.

6. Tandoori Masala

Tandoori masala is a tasty spice combination used in Pakistani recipes that includes fenugreek seeds, nutmeg, garlic, and other ingredients. It has a deep taste that is comparable to curry powder, making it an excellent substitute.

If you don’t like chili, you could find this dish unattractive. Tandoori masala may be used to a dry rub or marinade. But, keep in mind that it may turn the color of your food crimson. This is not the yellow hue associated with curry powder.

Start with a teaspoon for each teaspoon of curry powder when substituting tandoori masala.

7. Allspice

Allspice is made from dried berries that look like peppercorns. Yet, the tastes are similar to cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and other spices included in curry powder. As a result, it closely resembles the flavor of curry powder.

Allspice adds rich, fragrant overtones to both sweet and savory meals such as stews and baked pastries. Allspice is aromatic and peppery, making it an excellent choice for dishes that need softer ingredients.

You may use it to substitute curry powder in equal portions when flavoring grilled chicken or preparing a sweet dish.


It is not always possible to locate an identical curry powder substitute. Yet, you may include some of the tastes into your cuisine. If you wish to replace curry powder with a tasty spice, try one of the curry powder substitutes listed above.


Which is the best curry powder?

The Best Curry and Spice Blends for Cooking at Home
Feb 8, 2018

Can you replace curry powder with curry paste?

Curry paste contains entire chili peppers, but curry powder often does not, making the heat level in curry paste more powerful than that of curry powder. Curry paste is neither a replacement for curry powder, nor is it the other way around.

Can I substitute turmeric for curry powder?

Curry powder may be substituted with turmeric, coriander, and All Spice. 1 teaspoon of each.

What spices can I use instead of curry paste?

If you don’t have all of the materials to create your own curry paste, you may use curry powder. In general, 1 teaspoon of curry powder should be used for every tablespoon of curry paste in any specific dish. From there, you may fine-tune your taste preferences.

What kind of curry is McCormick curry powder?

McCormick Culinary® Curry Powder has a unique combination of premium spices such as coriander, turmeric, nutmeg, clove, and ginger to provide the true flavours of Indian and Southeast Asian cuisine.

Is all curry powder the same?

Although there are several pre-packaged curry powder mixes available, no two recipes are same, and the complicated combination frequently contains up to 20 different spices and herbs like as turmeric, cumin, coriander, sesame seeds, saffron, nutmeg, fennel, cloves, chiles, tamarind, cinnamon, cardamom, and more.

How much curry paste to substitute for powder?

As a general guideline, 1 teaspoon curry powder equals 1 tablespoon curry paste. Start with less and add more to taste if you like milder curries. It’s simple to add more, but it’s harder to repair a hot curry!

What is curry powder made of?

Curry powders are often made using turmeric, cumin, ginger, and black pepper. Garlic and cinnamon are also included in certain mixes. What all curry powders have in common is a sweet warmth and delightful pungency that gives a toasty richness to everything it comes into contact with.

Is garam masala the same as curry powder?

Garam masala and curry powder are both ground spice blends. They may share certain spices, but they are not the same product. Garam masala does not include turmeric, although curry powder does. This is why curry powder is generally yellow-orange in color rather than the reddish-brown of garam masala.

Does turmeric taste like curry?

It has a strong earthy and bitter flavor, almost musky, with a peppery spice. The deep, almost unyielding taste found in most curry powders? It is, indeed, turmeric.

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