Amazing Turmeric Alternatives For Your Pantry
Image Credit: Unsplash

The potent yellow powder known as turmeric has a long list of health advantages, earning it the moniker "magic spice." The flavour of this fantastic cooking spice is distinctively earthy and spicy. It has strong anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antioxidant effects. Moreover, it has long been a popular herbal medicine, particularly in Southeast Asia and India.

However, if you love Indian cuisine but don't have turmeric in your pantry, don't worry! Turmeric is an essential ingredient in many dishes, but there are some reliable substitutes that can be just as effective. These alternatives can assist you in adding a new and distinct twist to traditional Indian flavour combinations. So go ahead and experiment with these substitutes and see what works best for you!

Here are the best alternatives to this common spice:


Saffron is a spice with a distinctive flavour and a readily recognisable yellow-orange hue. It is made from the saffron crocus flower and has been used for both culinary and medicinal purposes for ages. Saffron has a flavour that is slightly bitter and a scent that has been compared to hay or grass. It is normally applied in extremely small amounts when used as a spice.

Saffron is a culinary spice that can be used to season rice, chicken, fish, and other foods. It is also used as a natural food colouring additive. Turmeric, another spice with comparable flavour qualities that is yellow-orange, is occasionally replaced with saffron in recipes. Even though saffron is more expensive than turmeric, it has a flavour profile that is comparable when used sparingly.


Safflower has a fairly similar appearance to saffron, but it generates a rich, brilliant yellow colour that resembles turmeric more. Safflower is a fantastic substitute for turmeric in meals to add colour because it has a milder flavour than saffron. Because the flavour is light, you will need a little more safflower than turmeric to replace the same amount of turmeric.

Ground Ginger

Given that ginger and turmeric belong to the same plant family, it should come as no surprise that ground ginger works well in place of turmeric. When using ginger as a substitute for turmeric, you must be aware that it has a stronger flavour. Ginger won't produce the same vibrant orange hue that turmeric typically gives food.

When substituting ground ginger for turmeric, you should use about half of what the recipe calls for. This is due to ginger's stronger flavour; adding too much ginger is not a good idea. Although you may always start with half and increase from there, you'll definitely want that balance because turmeric is considerably milder than ginger.

Mustard Powder or Mustard Seeds

Yellow mustard powder or mustard seeds can be used in place of turmeric if you don't have any on hand or want something milder. To use the seeds as a spice, they can be pounded into a powder. Because of its colour resemblance to turmeric, mustard powder is frequently used as a replacement. The flavour profile of mustard powder is different from that of turmeric, though. But in a pinch, it works well as a substitute for turmeric.


Red bell peppers that have been dried are used to make paprika, giving it its distinctive orange-red hue and sweet, earthy flavour. It works perfectly as a substitute for turmeric because it has a mild flavour and is fantastic for giving food colour. If you want to give your food more depth of flavour, try using smoked paprika.