The Best Substitutes Of Cardamom
Looking for a cardamom substitute? Here is a list of spices that can prove be a great alternative for the fragrant spice – cardamom.
Cardamom (इलायची) is an aromatic spice used widely in India and the Asian subcontinent. The first mention of cardamom was found in the Sumer (a region in Mesopotamia) and the Ayurvedic literature found in India. Cardamom is a relatively expensive spice.
It is a spice that comes from the seeds of various varieties of plants from the Elettaria and Amomum family. The cardamom plant has leafy shoots and each branch bears numerous flowers and fruit that is initially pale green or yellow in color but dries to brown. The cardamom seeds have a highly aromatic, warm, and fresh flavor. It is used to bring aroma in various sweet and savoury dishes. The spice is used popularly to spruce up South Asian curries and Scandinavian pastries.
As wonderful this spice is, it can be heavy on the pocket and if you are looking for alternatives, here is a list of substitutes for cardamom.
Benefits Of Cardamom
1. Cardamom can help relive cold and cough – Cardamom has been referred to as a magical spice for ages. It is a spice packed with antioxidants and it helps in curing a simple cold and cough. A great addition to a kehwa or kaada, cardamom provides a lot of relief from mild symptoms.
2. Aids in digestion – Cardamom is said to have a strong fragrance, and it helps in the activation of our taste buds and sensory elements, and thus it helps to deal with digestion related problems. It helps in the secretion of effective digestion-related enzymes.
3. Helps in lowering high blood pressure levels – In Ayurvedic remedies, it is said that taking a teaspoon of coriander seeds along with a pinch of cardamom may help in lowering blood pressure levels.
4. Acts as a mouth freshener – Cardamom has a sweet and floral scent and it makes it a great mouth freshener. An element present in cardamom known as cineole is known for its antimicrobial properties that promote oral hygiene and kills bacteria which lead to bad breath.
5. Boost blood circulation in body – Cardamom is known to help by increasing blood circulation in the body and especially to our lungs. The spice is also treated as a cure for respiratory-related issues.
Substitutes of Cardamom
Green cardamom has a beautiful fragrance. The spice is a combination of spicy, herbal, and floral flavors. Although cardamom as a spice has numerous health benefits, it is quite expensive. If you have run out of cardamom, here are some of the best substitutes for cardamom –
1. Cinnamon (Dalchini)
Cinnamon is a warming spice which is loaded with health benefits. Rich in antioxidants, it is one of the most appropriate substitutes for cardamom. Cinnamon is cheaper than cardamom and is pocket friendly. Cinnamon if taken in proper quantity it can provide the same taste as cardamom does, when added to a dish or even while preparing tea and turns out to be a great substitute for cardamom.
2. Nutmeg (Jaayaphal)
Nutmeg is a popular warming spice that is native to Indonesia. Nutmeg also has a taste that is quite similar to that of cardamom and is often used as substitute for cardamom. Nutmeg has a slightly warm, spicy, and nutty flavor. People who don’t have cardamom in their house or are allergic to cardamom can simply substitute it with nutmeg. Nutmeg is anti inflammatory and rich in antioxidants.
3. Cloves (Laung)
Cloves are formed from the flower buds of the clove tree. It is an evergreen tree also known as the syzygium aromatic. It is a versatile spice and is native to Asia. Cloves are also used to season a variety of curries and flavor hot beverages. It also has many medicinal properties and helps to cure a cold and cough, and toothache too. Cloves are a cheaper alternative for green cardamom.
4. Cinnamon And Ginger (Dalchini – Adrak)
Cinnamon and ginger both are highly beneficial for your body. They contain a variety of nutrients which can be equivalent to that of cardamom. They are both rich in antioxidants and are anti-inflammatory. When cinnamon and ginger are blended, it results in a very good combo, which can replace cardamom. The warm and spicy flavor of ginger gets summoned by the sweetness of cinnamon and it can be used as an effective alternative of cardamom.
Allspice is a type of spice and is prepared from the dried berries of the allspice tree which closely resembles a peppercorn. The tree is native to Jamaica and is also referred to as the Jamaica pepper or the new spice. The allspice also has a variety of health benefits. It is rich in a compound known as Eugenol which is rich in antiseptic properties. It also contains essential elements like Quercetin, Gallic acid, and Ericifolin which has numerous health benefits. It can prove to be a great substitute for cardamom in a variety of dishes.
6. Apple Pie Spice
The apple pie spice originated in Europe and has several variations throughout the continent. The Dutch, Swedish, and English apple pie spice are the most popular varieties. It contains minerals like vitamin A, iron, and various digestive enzymes that are beneficial for the body and even helps in controlling insulin levels. So, apple pie spice can be used as an alternative for cardamom.
Cardamom is a wonder spice and has been used for many ages in several countries. It is also known as the queen of all spices. The first half discusses the history of cardamom and its health benefits.The second half discusses the best substitute for cardamom.
Have you used any of the alternatives for cardamom yet?
Disclaimer – This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information before making any dietary changes.