Is Mexican Cooking All About the Spices?

Written by: FreshJax Team



Time to read 4 min

Mexican cooking is known for its unique and complex flavor profiles. From regional specialties to dishes passed down through generations, Mexican cuisine is beloved by many. But what makes Mexican food so unique? Is Mexican cooking really all about spices?

The short answer? Yes. Read on to learn more about our favorite Mexican spices and seasonings and get inspired to create healthy, flavorful dishes.

Let FreshJax Organic Spices introduce you to the Mexican Seasonings that inspire Awesome Flavors

Traditional and Common Mexican Seasonings and Spices

Mexican cuisine is renowned for its unique flavor and complexity of ingredients, and the use of traditional Mexican seasonings is one of the primary sources of this flavor. From the distinct, earthy flavors of cumin to the tart, citrusy notes of oregano, the traditional spices below add complexity to your dishes.

1. Cumin

While it doesnā€™t originate in Mexico, Cumin is a staple seasoning for many excellent Mexican dishes. Cumin is a fragrant, earthy spice made from the dried seeds of the cumin plant and has a slightly nutty flavor with a hint of citrus. The bold taste and comforting warmth of cumin make this spice a global favorite. In fact, cumin is theĀ second most popular spice in the world, only outsold by black pepper.

Try using cumin when youā€™re making some delicious dishes, including:

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2. Cinnamon

Cinnamon is a sweet, aromatic spice used in Mexican cooking and international cuisine. It is made from the dried bark of the cinnamon tree and has a warm, sweet flavor. TheĀ traditional cassia cinnamon that most are familiar with adds a smooth, delicate warmth that helps it stand out among the crowd.

However, many traditional Mexican dishes use cassia cinnamonā€™s lesser-known counterpart, Ceylon cinnamon. Ceylon cinnamon is far milder than traditional cassia cinnamon. This cinnamon has a slight citrus flavor, is less spicy, and comes from the bark of evergreen trees. Packed with essential antioxidants, Ceylon cinnamon holds its own against the cassia cinnamon you might be more familiar with.

Though both options are delicious, itā€™s best to test both types of cinnamon before adding them to your dishes. Though similar, cassia and Ceylon cinnamon will add different flavors to your meals that might not fit the taste youā€™re craving.

What can you make with cinnamon? Consider cooking up any of the following using your favorite organic spices and cinnamon:

  • Churros
  • Horchata
  • Cinnamon rice

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3. Paprika

Paprika is a spicy, flavorful spice that is used in Mexican cooking. It is made from dried, ground chile peppers with mild to medium heat and was originallyĀ cultivated in Central Mexico. This stunning, bright-red seasoning comes as a powder and has a smokey flavor similar to red bell pepper. Consider adding paprika to some of your favorite dishes for an exciting new flavor, or make yourself some of the following:

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4. Coriander

Coriander is a fragrant, earthy spice used in many Mexican dishes. This spice is made from the dried seeds of the coriander plant and has a perfect balance of spice and taste. Consider usingĀ coriander in some of the following delicious dishes to season your dinner to perfection:

  • Curries
  • Soups
  • Tacos
  • Stir-fry dinner

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5. Allspice

This fragrant, sweet, and pungent spice is made from dried berries of the allspice tree and has a warm, sweet flavor with hints of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves. Allspice gets its name because its flavor profile is so challenging to define.

When you incorporate allspice into your dish, you get a single flavor and a multidimensional taste of cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and black pepper, among others. This unique taste will make an impression on any of your favorite meals. Consider incorporating allspice into one of the following dishes:

  • Tamales
  • Fish
  • Meat dishes
  • Mole sauces
  • Tea blends

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6. Oregano

Oregano is a fragrant herb often used in Mexican cooking and in numerous cuisines worldwide, including Italian, Turkish, and Greek meals. It is made from the dried leaves of the oregano plant and has a sweet, earthy flavor, a hint of lemony tartness, and strong peppery notes. Oregano is often used to flavor tacos, enchiladas, burritos, and other dishes. Add some oregano to any of the following dishes:

  • Chili
  • Tacos
  • Meats
  • Burritos

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7. Cayenne

This spicy seasoning is only for fearless foodies. With about ten times the spice of traditional jalapeno pepper, cayenne pepper powder is a hallmark of Mexican cuisine. It is perfect for adding a kick to your favorite Mexican dishes. Consider adding delicious Cayenne to any of the following dishes:

  • Tacos
  • Burritos
  • Enchiladas
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8. Thyme

This delicious herb is used in various traditional Mexican dishes and in cuisines from all over the world. Often added to delicious soups or sauces, thyme is a classic addition to your favorite Mexican cuisine and provides a bold, slightly minty, floral flavor youā€™re sure to love.

Consider adding delicious thyme to any of your favorite dishes, such as:

  • Salsa
  • Barbacoa

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Have you tried Our Mexican Seasoning Blend?

Mexican cuisine is known for its unique, complex flavors created through a medley of spices.

From traditional spices and seasonings to modern flavors, Mexican cuisine has evolved to include a variety of flavorful ingredients and mouth-wateringĀ spice blends that perfectly top off any traditional dish.

Whether youā€™re experienced with the spices in this article or a newcomer to cooking traditional Mexican dishes, branching out and being adventurous with your spices is always a positive. As you start exploring different flavor profiles, consider organic spices, such as the delicious additions provided from FreshJax.

FreshJax is an organic spice company sharing its love for delicious, mouth-watering meals from the best, purest organic ingredients. Whether youā€™re starting to explore international cuisine or looking to make your favorite Mexican dish from the comfort of your home,Ā our catalog has the right spices for you.

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What is your favorite flavor when cooking Mexican Cuisine?Ā 

Did we miss any?Ā 

What inspires you about these flavors?Ā 

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