Create your own turkey seasoning rub

November 18th, 2015

Thanksgiving is here, folks. And the star of the show needs to wow your crowd. Turkey is main dish at most Thanksgiving tables and everyone you ask is sure to have a different preferred method of cooking. 

Of course, here at Spice Racks Blog we’re in favor of a good turkey seasoning rub. This method will you give you a golden, crunchy skin with tender meat and real flavorful gravy.

This mix can be done in a small food processor, but if you want to release more flavor, use a mortar and pestle.

Zesty Turkey Rub

  • Lemon zest
  • Flat leaf parsley
  • Chives
  • Oregano
  • Salt, pepper (to taste)
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • Olive oil
  • Optional: Add some depth with onion powder, paprika or both
  • Directions: Add equal parts zest, parsley, chives an oregano plus a pinch of salt and pepper. Peel and add garlic cloves. Combine and add olive oil until the consistency is that of a thick, spreadable paste. Rub the paste all over the turkey before baking. For extra flavor, rub some under the skin.

If you end with some left over, keep it in an airtight container. If you run short on gravy you can use it and some bouillon to stretch it out. Plus, it will add flavor to veggies and leftovers.

Spice spotlight: the benefits of cinnamon

November 3rd, 2015

As we say good bye to October and hello to November, the holiday season draws nearer. It’s been established that the scent of cinnamon is more appealing during the holiday season, and most of us tend to gravitate towards it as the weather cools down, but do you know the benefits of cinnamon.

This holiday favorite not only spices up your coffee, candles and baked goods, but it also can help you lose weight, fight off infections and control symptoms. Research has contributed many health benefits to the common spice, including:

Health benefits

  • May help treat type two diabetes
  • May lower bad cholesterol
  • Has anti-fungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties
  • May treat symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s
  • May have anti-carcinogenic properties
  • May manage Ppolycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
  • Boosts metabolism

Beneficial properties

These health benefits are found in certain properties within cinnamon, including:

  • Cinnamaldehyde
  • Antioxidants
  • High fiber content

Types of cinnamon

The most common type of cinnamon is Cassia or Chinese cinnamon. This is what you typically find on the shelf at the grocery store and probably what you have in your kitchen at home. Verum cinnamon is Cassia’s stronger big brother; it has more beneficial properties and can be used as a diet supplement.

  •  Cinnamomum Cassia or Chinese cinnamon: This is the most common type and most likely what you have in your spice rack at home.
  • Cinnamomum Verum: This type has way more of these benefits, but can be more costly, harder to find and should only be consumed in small doses (1-2 TSPS no more than six days a week).

Storage options

The right storage will keep your cinnamon fresh and help maintain these health benefits. These options are best:

  • Glass spice jar: This will keep your cinnamon fresh, plus it’s a great decorative touch of your spice rack.
  • Airtight spice keeper: If you want to keep your spice air tight and out of sight, this plastic keeper with silicone seal is perfect.
  • Shaker: Great if you use your cinnamon to top off cereal, oatmeal, coffee or other treats.
  • Magnetic storage: If you don’t have the space for a spice rack, consider these cool magnetic jars to keep spices stuck to the fridge. This keeps them in reach and creates a cool decorative touch.

Get the look: Magnetic spice tins

October 5th, 2015

You can keep magnetic spice jars right on your fridge.

This DIY magnetic spice rack has been popular on Pinterest lately. Not only is a great way to add some personality to your kitchen, but it conserves cabinet space and makes finding the perfect spice quick and easy. Magnetic Storage Tin Set with Windows (Set of 3) Image

Now, a lot of the tutorials on Pinterest show you how to take these cool tins and adhere magnets to the back. But that’s not necessary. These great Storage Tins come with magnetic backing already included. These magnetic spice tins are made with full metal bodies, featuring a clear front lid. The side of the lid even has both pour and sprinkle openings, which both utilize with a simple twist of the lid — no need to completely open the piece.

The full magnet back is what really makes these tins awesome. Even better — they come in sets of three. You can make a cool display on the front of your fridge like the picture above, or you can add magnetic strips to the inside of cabinet doors or even to your back splash. Get creative and display the wonderful colors, textures and scents of your favorite spices.

How to make your own pumpkin pie spice mix

September 30th, 2015

Photo courtesy

Fall has officially started and the sweet scent of pumpkin spice has hit just about every snack you can buy at the grocery store. But what about the real thing? Pumpkin pie is a must-have for this time of year and the famous blend of spices is super easy to mix in your own kitchen.

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by spices, especially blends. But it’s really as simple as trial and error. Mix your favorite spices, see what you like and what you don’t. As for pumpkin pie spice, all you need is the following:

  • 3 tbs cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ginger
  • 2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cloves

There is more than one reason to make this spice at home. First, you can grind up your own spices and make a very fresh blend. Also, in the long run, blending your spices is a great way to save money in the kitchen. Plus, once you have this awesome autumn blend on hand, you can add it to a multitude of recipes: cookies, lattes, mixed drinks, cake and more.


If you are blending your own spices, the most important factor is the storage. You want to keep spices in a sturdy, airtight container. This recently updated Spice Container from Progressive is the perfect solution. This BPA-free spice jar is made to hold up to 1 1/2 cups (that equals about a full standard sized box of baking soda, for perspective.) A silicone lip and a latching lid create a trusty airtight seal — but the best part of this container is found inside. A dual dusting screen and leveler comes together in one, removable piece. This inert is a dusting screen, but can be slid open to reveal a leveler. So whether you’re just adding a sprinkle of spice or need an exact measurement for a recipe, this jar is all you need. Plus, all pieces are dishwasher safe. What’s not to like?


Looking to spice up your pumpkin pie recipe further? Consider these alternative flavors:

Spice storage ideas that make it easy to enjoy your favorite seasonings

September 9th, 2015

You know how to grow your own spices and even how to create custom made spice rubs as well as marinates; now we’ll talk about great spice storage ideas!

Whether you picked too much spice from the garden or you created your own secret meat rub, keep your spices stored in the pantry or kitchen so they are always within easy reach.

Many spices are sensitive to direct sunlight and intense heat, so they should be stored in a cool, dark area that is still within easy reach of your prep area. The best places to store your spices are inside cabinets and drawers, which keeps spices within easy reach. You can also store spices on a counter top away from any windows.

Fresh herbs

Keep all your excess fresh herbs stored away until you can use them with the Progressive fresh herb keeper. The water reservoir offers hydration for stored herbs, ensuring they stay fresh for several days in the refrigerator. Now you can keep fresh herbs readily available so you can enjoy fresh basil, rosemary and other spices in your signature dishes.

Spice mixtures

If you like to create your own spice mixtures and meat rubs, you need a convenient place to store your concoctions. Our spice balls provide tons of storage space to store large amounts of spice mixtures so you can keep a large quantity of herbs on hand. You can store smaller spice mixtures in our spice shakers, which allows you to sprinkle your favorite mixture over steaming plates of food.



Salt and pepper 

Fresh herbs and custom-made mixtures are all well and good, but who has the time to do that everyday? The bread and butter of every meal are still salt and pepper, but you can still spice up your meal with freshly ground salt and pepper. A dual action salt and pepper grinder allows you to season your meals with fresh spice, without breaking out the expensive herbs. Simply fill the grinder with pink salt and pepper corns and with a flick of the wrist you can experience freshly ground spices without going to a lot of trouble.

So whether you are plucking your spices from the garden, mixing up your own concoctions, or cheating and buying herbs from the supermarket, keep them easily accessible while cooking to spice up your meals.

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Mary Joesten is a content writer for Organize It, Stacks & Stacks and the Organization Store.