Stocking A Spice Drawer For Everyday Use

There is no right way or wrong way to go about stocking a spice drawer! Each country has spices and herbs that are unique and so there are things in my drawer you might not need or use, and some things that you will also have. The trick is to start small and only buy what you will use. I dry a lot of my own herbs, especially tarragon which grows in abundance in my garden. I have 78 different herbs and spices but it has taken me a long time to collect them.

Stocking A Spice Drawer
My Spice Drawer

On my kitchen counter I keep a salt pig with medium flaked salt. This is for Dave who prefers to use this with his cooking. I prefer to use the flaked salt as a finishing salt, and the coarse salt in the grinder when I cook. I also have some wine salt, fine salt, and a pepper grinder close to hand.

Salt and pepper
Salt and pepper

I have a shelf above the stove and that holds the chilli flakes, herbs de Provence and the flowers of Scotland blend. The containers for the chillies and herbs come from France and are specifically designed for the herbs and act as a grinder.

A few extras
A few extras

I have a collection of spices for curry and they start with chipotle chillies, cassia bark, red chillies and 4 different curry blends of differing strengths as well as fenugreek seeds.

Curry spices
Curry spices

To make a curry you will also need green cardamom, cloves, star anise and cinnamon quills.

Spices For Curry
Spices For Curry

and for other dishes you need juniper berries, white cardamom, nutmeg and mace

Spices and Nutmeg Grater
Spices and Nutmeg Grater

I have a good selection of herbs! In my drawer you will find rosemary, mint, marjoram and thyme which I consider essential!

Essential Herbs
Essential Herbs

As well as dill, sage, tarragon and parsley

A Few More Herbs
A Few More Herbs

AS well as oregano, basil, mixed herbs and lemon myrtle.

And Even More Herbs
And Even More Herbs

Next to show you are the selection of peppers: white pepper, Sichuan pepper, black pepper, pink peppercorns and my newest addition of telicherry peppercorns.

Peppers
Peppers

and salts: truffle salt, smoked salt, black salt, Singapore salt and chilli salt flakes

Salts
Salts

You will also find allspice, ground nutmeg, ground cumin, ground coriander, mixed spice and pickling spice in my drawer.

More spices
More spices

Next we have a collection of seeds: celery, poppy, mustard, dill, fennel, coriander, cumin and nigella

Seeds
Seeds

And a collection of onion flakes, garlic flakes, oak smoked red pepper, Cajun spice, sumac and ground ginger

more in the collection
more in the collection

These are flavour and colour adding spices – cayenne pepper, turmeric, smoked paprika, curry powder, hot paprika, paprika

Flavour and colour
Flavour and colour

For baking I have vanilla powder, ground cinnamon, lavender petals and a vanilla bean

Baking
Baking

Last but not least I have lime leaves, dulse, bay leaves, curry leaves, wasabi and saffron

Leaves and more
Leaves and more

Everything in bold is what I would start out with if you are stocking a spice drawer for the first time. The rest of your drawer can grow organically as you make more and more dishes at home.

What I blogged:

Lavender and Lime Signature

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41 thoughts on “Stocking A Spice Drawer For Everyday Use

  1. How lovely to have tarragon growing in abundance in your garden – I have never had much luck with it – will have to give it another try. Our spice drawers look very similar!

  2. That was so fun going through your spice drawers. Good time to do a little clean out too as spices do not have very long shelf lives. Today, my new next door neighbor brought me over some Hungarian Paprika from her home town freshly ground and so beautifully vibrant in colour. I can’t wait to make something with it.

  3. Hi Tandy!

    What an abundance of herbs you have! Quite the selection!

    Tarragon is big for me as well, I try to dry some for wintertime. It’s a family tradition to season our chicken pot pie with tarragon. I try to dry other herbs like basil and rosemary too for later year.

    Rosemary is my favorite herb of all time! And it’s so expensive here, over 5 dollars a bottle!

    Vanilla bean anything too is just wonderful. Your system for organization is much better than mine though!!

    1. Wow, that is really expensive for rosemary, which grows in abundance quite easily. I have indigenous rosemary in my garden which grows all year round 🙂

    1. Spices and herbs do not keep that long. It depends on the temperature in your kitchen mostly and how airtight the container is. Basically, once they stop smelling like what they are meant to smell like, toss them 🙂

  4. Wow… and there I was thinking we had a lot of spices, lol! This is really inspiring – just love reading about what’s all in your kitchen 🙂

  5. I love how organized you are, it gives me inspiration to organize mine a little better. I got a 3 layer little spice cabinet last year but still haven’t gotten around to putting the names on things so everytime I look for one I have to look for about a minute. 😉

  6. OMG! 78 herbs ad spices…very impressive Tandy. Thanks for let us peek on them…
    Hope you are having a great wee 😀

  7. Tandy what an amazing array of spices and herbs you stock in your kitchen. I too love having deferent salts, spices and herbs. I see you also have dulse, my mother and grandmother were forever eating this (collected fresh) when I was a young girl and I never quite liked the strong smell it had. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    1. Thankfully the dulse does not have a strong smell and I am slowly using it more and more on my vegetables – a few dashes at a time 🙂

  8. Hey Ya Tandy. Great post, I have an entire shelf of herbs & spices, I should package them up & give them to someone that will love them or get onto using them. They expire right? Although, herbs & spices in the pantry do make a kitchen feel loved. 🙂 I do like some of the little jars in your spread.

  9. Such a clever setup!! I lined them until now, but my set of spices has been growing lately (though it isn’t as impressive as yours!) and so I’ll have to think about optimizing my tiny space as you did 🙂

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