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4 Ways to Use Allspice

Allspice Berries Via djwtwo on Flickr

Allspice is a wonderful spice that often doesn’t get the respect it deserves, mostly because people have no idea what to do with it! Although it’s not commonly used in American cuisine (unless you’re brining or making Cincinnati chili), it’s a staple spice in many parts of the Caribbean and Middle East. The dried fruit of the Pimenta dioica plant, allspice got its name from the English who thought it had a flavor combination of cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg. If you’re going to buy a jar of allspice berries, here are 4 unique ways to use them up:

  • Next time you make spiced cider, mulled wine, or chai, include a couple of all spice berries

  • Grind it up and make Jamaican Jerk Chicken (it’s a central spice in jerk seasoning)

  • Add a big pinch of ground allspice to your next barbecue sauce. It adds a unique sweet and spicy depth of flavor.

  • Use it in any spice-driven dessert like gingerbread and spice cookies. It also pairs wonderfully with dark chocolate desserts that aren’t too sweet.

Although it may be new to you, grab a bottle of allspice berries next time you’re at the grocery store and add it to your spice cupboard rotation. With its unique combination of flavors, it adds a unique depth to a variety of sweet and savory dishes.