The 7 Best Substitutes For Ginger

Ginger is a spicy, sweet root that’s most commonly used in Asian cuisine. It has a bright, pungent flavor and can be used fresh, dried or candied.

Ginger is an important ingredient in many recipes because of its ability to add depth to dishes—especially those with a spicy kick. But if you don’t have ginger on hand, don’t worry! There are plenty of substitutes that can be used as alternatives to ginger in your favorite recipes.

What Is Ginger?

Ginger is a valuable ingredient in cooking. It’s used in a variety of dishes, from Indian curries to Chinese stir-fries and even American desserts. But what exactly is ginger?

Ginger is a rhizome—basically a root that grows horizontally underground—that comes from the plant Zingiber officinale. It looks like a knobby carrot, with thin skin and an orange interior that tastes spicy and sweet, but with a unique flavor all its own.

The flavor of ginger is one of the most distinct and recognizable flavors in the world: it’s spicy, warm and citrusy at the same time! It’s also been used for centuries as a medicinal herb by many cultures around the world because of its health benefits.

The 7 Best Substitutes For Ginger

#1 Cardamom

Cardamom is a spice that has been used in both cooking and medicine since ancient times. It’s often found in Indian, Pakistani and Sri Lankan cuisine. The seeds are small, brown and oval shaped with a strong aroma. They’re also used to flavor coffee and tea as well as tobacco products.

In addition to its culinary uses, cardamom can also be used as a substitute for ginger in baking recipes. If you’re making something like cookies or cakes where the flavor of ginger goes unnoticed, cardamom can be your best friend!

#2 Nutmeg

Nutmeg is the seed of a tropical tree. It has a sweet, slightly musky taste that’s similar to ginger but with a hint of cinnamon. Use nutmeg as a substitute for ginger in baked goods, soups and sauces. It’s also great in curries, stews and marinades.

To substitute one teaspoon of ground ginger with one-quarter teaspoon of ground nutmeg, grind the nutmeg with a mortar and pestle or pulse it in a blender or food processor until finely ground.

#3 Allspice

Allspice, also known as Jamaican pepper, is a spice that closely resembles ginger in both taste and texture.

Allspice has a warm, sweet flavor and smells like cinnamon and cloves. It’s used in many Caribbean dishes and can be found in the spice section of most grocery stores.

To substitute allspice for ginger, use about 1/4 teaspoon for every tablespoon of ground ginger called for in your recipe.

#4 Cinnamon

Cinnamon is a spice that is made from the bark of the cinnamon tree. It has a sweet, warm flavor and can be used in both sweet and savory recipes. Cinnamon is often used to flavor desserts and beverages, but it can also add great flavor to soups, stews, and curries. Cinnamon can be purchased as whole sticks or ground into powder form.

If you’re substituting cinnamon for ginger, use about 1/4 teaspoon for every 1/2 teaspoon of fresh ginger root. You can also use ground cinnamon in place of fresh ginger, but remember that cinnamon powder will be less potent than fresh or frozen ginger root—so you’ll need to use more of it.

#5 Cinnamon

Cinnamon is a warm, gentle spice with a sweet and slightly spicy taste. It pairs well with apples, pears, oranges, and vanilla. You can also use it to make apple pie or cinnamon rolls—just add a dash of cinnamon to the batter!

If you want to use cinnamon as a substitute for ginger, just remember that they have different flavors. Ginger is more intense and sharp than cinnamon. If you’re baking something that calls for both spices, try using half of each instead of all ginger or all cinnamon.

#6 Mace

Mace is a spice that’s often used in Indian and other Asian cuisines, and it’s a great substitute for ginger if you’re looking to add a little heat to your meal. Mace is the outer covering that surrounds nutmeg, which is ground down into a powder that can be used as a substitute for fresh ginger.

To use mace in place of ginger, simply add it to your recipe in place of the fresh root.

#7 Dried Ginger

Dried ginger is a great substitute for fresh when the flavor of ginger is still desired but it’s unavailable. It’s also convenient because it can be stored at room temperature, and it lasts longer than fresh ginger.

To use dried ginger as a substitute for fresh, simply use 1/2 teaspoon of dried ginger powder in place of 1 teaspoon of fresh ginger root, or 1/2 tablespoon of freshly grated dried ginger in place of 1 tablespoon of freshly grated fresh ginger root.


So there you have it—the 7 best substitutes for ginger.

Whether you’re a chef or just love to cook, knowing how to substitute one ingredient for another can make all the difference in your recipe.

If you’re looking for ways to use up some of those old spices and herbs, this list has got you covered.

If you’ve ever wondered what to do with that jar of ginger that’s been sitting in your pantry forever—or if you just want to experiment with different flavors—you’ve come to the right place!

Leave a Comment