These are the 6 main spices that most of the French dishes are incomplete without. 

1. Vadouvan

Vadouvan is also known as French curry. This unique spice is a blend of basil, onion, cumin, garlic, turmeric, cardamom, curry leaves, black mustard, black pepper, and fenugreek. It often has a rough texture because these ingredients break down together. Vadouvan is often used in French dishes with poultry, seafood and vegetables.

2. Tarragon

Indispensable to the French cuisine, this spice has a liquorice flavor. Tarragon is used to flavor foods like vinegar and mustard, as well as in cooking. Tarragon goes well with chicken, fish and egg dishes. 

3. Herbes de Provence

Herbes de Provence is a blend of rosemary, thyme, oregano, lavender, dill, fennel, bay leaf and sage. The herbs are dried and crushed. This seasoning is best used in grilled meats and to add flavor to soups and stews.

4. Bouquet Garni

The Bouquet Garni is a collection or bouquet of fresh herbs consisting of rosemary, parsley, thyme, bay leaves and peppercorns tied together in a string. The unique taste of this spice is quite bold and goes perfect with French soup.

Instagram image by @kellymccoy1129 


5. Nutmeg

This spice is also very popular in French cuisine due to its warm and nutty taste. Nutmeg is most often used in desserts and pastries.

6. Saffron 

These beautiful bright red threads of saffron are the main ingredient of French cuisine. The sweet floral and earthy taste of saffron is most commonly used for seafood.

Saffron is mainly used in Bouillabaisse, a traditional stew of fish and seafood, native to the south of France.

Next time you eat French cuisine, try to guess which spices are used to prepare it.