- Tipnut's Homemaking Site: For The Crafty & Clever - https://tipnut.com -

Everything You Want To Know About Herbs & Spices

Here are a few notes to help figure out whether or not your herbs and spices are stale or still good to use. I also added some DIY spice rack projects to the page and a few recipes for making your own blends.

First here are a few tips for testing for freshness…

Testing Online:

How Long Can They Be Stored: Spices don’t spoil or go bad, but they do lose strength. Here’s a general guideline for storing them…

Storage Tips:

Quick Tips:

Source: Much of the tips and information are found in the three sites listed above, McCormicks, Clubhouse and Durkee.

Here are a handful of ideas for making your own spice rack, fairly easy projects that provide plenty of inspiration! For the labels, you can customize your own easily (see this page [6] for help).


Test Tube Rack [7]: Awesome & easy to make too! Each tube will hold about 1/4 cup of product. Label the cork tops with a sharpie.

Under Cabinet Magnetic Tins [8]: Made by fastening a metal ruler underneath cabinets and attaching magnetic tins. Found via Curbly [9].



Wall-Mounted & Magnetic [10]: Just bolt on a sheet of metal in the location that you want your rack, glue neodymium magnets to the top of one-piece metal jar lids, add some labels, fill with spices and voila!

Wooden Rack [11]: Some basic woodworking is involved, includes free pdf download for labels.



Repurposed Etched Glass Jars [12]: Not a rack but a nice way to organize your spices. Recycle glass jars, clean them up then use etching cream to label.

Bamboo Caddy [13]: Repurpose a bamboo steamer with some stiff cardboard, glue, paint and caster wheels.



Dark Wood [14]: Easy to make with a few scrap pieces of wood, brad nails and stain.

Under Shelf & Magnetic [15]: Made by drilling holes under the cabinet for the magnets to fill.


Make Your Own Blends

Apple Pie

2 TBS ground cinnamon
1 TBS ground nutmeg
1/2 TBS ground allspice
1/2 TBS ground cloves

Pumpkin Pie

1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon ginger

Italian Seasoning

1/4 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon marjoram
1/4 teaspoon basil
1/8 teaspoon sage

Poultry Seasoning

2 TBS sage
1 TBS thyme
1 TBS marjoram
1 TBS savory
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
Pinch of cloves

Source: Common Causes Of Poor Quality Pickles: Tip Sheet [16]

2 TBS allspice berries
2 TBS cardamom seeds
2 TBS coriander seeds
2 TBS whole cloves
2 TBS mustard seeds
2 TBS peppercorns


2 bay leaves (crumbled)
2 cinnamon sticks (broken)
2 small pieces dried gingerroot (chopped)
2 small dried red chilies (crushed) or 1-2 tsp hot pepper flakes.

Bulk Bouquet Garni
Using dried herbs:

2 TBS parsley
2 TBS celery leaves
1 TBS thyme
1 TBS marjoram

Three Tasty Recipes To Shake The Salt Habit

Here are three recipes you can use to flavor dishes, nice alternative to salt if you’re trying to cut or reduce salt from your diet.

Salt Free Seasoning Shake #1

1 TBS garlic powder
1 tsp basil
1 tsp thyme
1 tsp parsley
1 tsp savory
1 tsp mace
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp sage
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

Salt Free Seasoning Shake #2

2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp basil
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp lemon peel powder

Directions For Both: Simply mix together the ingredients from either recipe then put in a herb shaker for easy use.

No Salt Seasoning Shake #3

1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp mustard (dry)
1/2 tsp thyme (dried)
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp white pepper
1/4 tsp celery seed


Salad Seasoning Shake

Mix together and keep in a single shaker to season up your salads:

1/4 cup Parsley flakes
2 TBS Oregano
2 TBS Basil
2 TBS Marjoram
1 TBS Dry mustard
1 1/2 tsp Pepper

Makes approximately 3/4 cup. Use a shaker that has larger holes and preferably a cap to seal flavor. Store in a cool, dry spot.

Cajun Kicker Seasoning

Use on fish, shrimp, chicken and whatever else you like!

4 TBS Paprika
3 TBS Basil (dried)
2 TBS Thyme (dried)
2 TBS Onion Flakes (minced)
2 TBS Garlic Powder
1 TBS Fennel Seeds (crushed)
1 TBS Parsley Flakes
1 TBS Salt
1 1/2 tsp Cayenne Pepper
1 tsp Pepper


Cinnamon Sugar

1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon