Herbs and spices can be expensive – especially organic ones.
A few days ago I was at the grocery store looking for a particular herb I needed for a recipe and I have to admit, the steep price tag shocked me. A small bottle (1.62 oz = 45 g) of Organic Caraway Seeds cost almost $6.00. I didn’t like the price, but I needed the herb. It reminded me once again of the benefits of growing herbs
How can we save money on herbs and spices?
- Grow herbs ourselves, if possible.
- Create herb and spice blends instead of buying them.
As a hobby gardener I have grown an herb garden for several years and I have found that growing herbs is really not difficult. (If I can do it, anyone can do it.) I find joy in tending to various fragrant herbs and try to expand the herb garden by adding new herbs whenever I am able to. During summer and fall I keep busy picking and preserving many of the herbs. This way, during the long winter months, I always have a good selection of dried and frozen herbs to draw from. By the time I need to replenish, it is a new growing season and the cycle begins again.
Drying Herbs in my shed
Sadly, even with a good stash of herbs, I still have to purchase some herbs or spices at the store because, even though I grow many, I can’t grow them all. But I’d say 90% of the herbs I use are home-grown.
I have never kept a tally to see how much I save by growing herbs in the garden, but I know it adds up. But, more importantly: Besides saving money, I am sure that the quality of home-grown herbs is superior to anything bought. I also believe that the health benefits, joy, exercise, and satisfaction derived from growing your own herbs, can’t be calculated in a monetary way.
Save $ money $ by making your own herbs, spices and blends.
Last night I finished the last bit of Italian Seasoning I had. So today, instead of going to a store and buying more, I thought I’d share with you how I save by making my own with the herbs I already have at hand. It is super easy. Most likely you have all you need already in your spice cabinet.
If you make it yourself, you know every ingredient.
1 Tbsp dried Basil
1 Tbsp dried Oregano
½ Tbsp. dried Rosemary
½ Tbsp dried Thyme
1 Tbsp dried Marjoram
1 Tbsp dried Parsley
Mix all ingredients together and blend well. Store in an airtight, labeled container in a cabinet or pantry, away from heat and light.
Making herb and spice blends yourself allows for the freedom to create something unique to your personal taste.
This basic list of herbs are the bones of what makes “Italian Seasoning.” Some cooks may choose to add a little heat by adding pepper flakes, some add garlic and onion powder. Personally, I prefer this simple recipe because it allows me to add other spices and herbs selectively, different with each dish, and I can cater to the preferences of the ones who will eat my food. Ultimately this recipe becomes what you wish it to be.