3 Easy Methods To Detect Common Adulterants In Spices
Image Credit: Common Adulterants In Spices

Spices present in the kitchen not only enhance the taste of food but also keep us healthy. But, now, in the age of adulteration, there is no guarantee of spices' purity. So, here's how you can avoid purchasing adulterated spices. Here are three tips for testing adulteration in spices. 


Turmeric not only enhances the colour and taste of food but also protects us from many diseases. Experts also believe that turmeric contains elements that protect us from cancer. But do you know turmeric is the spice that is most commonly adulterated?

Turmeric adulteration

During adulteration, turmeric is mixed with spurious colours, maize flour, yellow-coloured sawdust, lead chromate (a substance used in paints), etc. 

How to check adulteration in turmeric powder? 

  1. Put turmeric powder in a test tube. Now add a few drops of concentrated hydrochloric acid and water to it. If the colour of turmeric turns pink, then metallic powder has been mixed in it. 
  2. Similarly, to know the adulteration of chalk powder in turmeric, mix turmeric, add a few drops of hydrochloric acid and water in a test tube or glass. If you see bubbles, then there is an adulteration of chalk or soap powder. 
  3. Now let's follow the easiest way. Put a teaspoon of turmeric powder in half a glass of water and leave it for 20 minutes. If the turmeric settles down and the water appears clear, you can take a deep breath because it means that turmeric is unadulterated.

Chilli powder

Red chilli makes the food spicier. It improves blood circulation and also contains cancer-fighting ingredients. But these days, this spice is adulterated too. 

Chilli powder adulteration

Adulteration in red chilli makes the taste of food more astringent instead of making it spicy. 

How to check adulteration in red chilli powder?

There are many ways to check adulteration in red chilli powder.

  1. Put a teaspoon of red chilli powder in a glass of water. The colour of the water will change if it has been adulterated.
  2. If a smooth white powder collects at the bottom of the glass, it is understood that soapstone has been adulterated in chilli. 

Black pepper 

Black pepper keeps digestion intact and helps in reducing weight. It also contains elements that protect us from cancer. But do you know that black pepper is adulterated with papaya seeds these days?

How to detect adulteration in black pepper?

To check adulteration in black pepper, put five grams of black pepper in a glass of alcohol. If some seeds float even after five minutes, papaya seeds or black peppercorns have been mixed in them.

So in these ways, you can detect the adulteration in three essential spices of your kitchen