Thursday, January 15, 2009


This is not a recipe, but it is essential to quality healthy cooking. Less fat in your cooking often means less flavor - unless you throw in some great spices. Theoretically, we are all supposed to change our spices every year or two because they lose their potency. As in throw out the old ones and buy all new. Since a jar of spices can easily be $3, for us poor starving students, this will just not do.

Enter bulk spices. Once I worked up the courage to try these, I have not gone back to pre-bottled spices. (Well, I buy it in a container once, just to get the container.) Bulk spices are great for college students, people who don't cook much, for trying something new, or things like pumpkin pie spice that you might only use a couple of times a year. I re-filled my chipotle chili powder and cumin jars for about 50 cents each, and they are good quality, too.

You can use bulk spices to re-fill an empty jar, buy a new jar for about $1, or just leave them in the baggie you bought them in. Whole Foods has a large selection and they have zip-top bags that you buy them in, so our curry powder stays in the little bag. You really can buy as much or little as you need, so get just that 15 cents of pumpkin pie spice and don't worry about whether it will taste as good next year.

Where can you get them? Since grocery stores are so regional, my general advice is to look in the bulk foods section. I have bought them at Whole Foods, Central Market, Fred Meyer (a Kroger store) and small independent natural foods stores.

1 comment:

  1. Although when I bought just the poultry seasoning I needed (visiting and the hostess didn't have any) the cashier had to place a length of register tape on the scale with my bag of seasoning in order to get it to record the weight! Cost me 10 or 15 cents...


Try this and want to share how it went? Have questions before you try it? Let me know!