Italian Seasoning Substitute – Alternatives for Italian Seasoning for Cooking

Published Categorized as Ingredients

Italian seasoning is a wonderful ingredient if you have it handy. But if you find yourself running out just when you need it, there are other Italian seasoning substitute ingredients you can use.

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In this article we will explore what you can use as an Italian seasoning substitute. Hopefully you’ll like the alternatives chosen in this post!

Substitute For Italian Seasoning

Italian seasoning is made of a combination of spices and herbs that are commonly used in Italian cooking. Here are a list of herbs that you can use to replace your Italian seasoning: 

  • Oregano: Oregano is a strong spice that can be used as a substitute for Italian seasoning. If you use oregano as a whole substitute, you could find that your dish tastes stronger than your Italian seasoning would have provided.
  • Basil: Basil is a great herb if paired with tomato-based dishes. We would recommend that you replace Italian seasoning for basil if you are making pasta dishes or any dish that involves tomatoes.
  • Marjoram: Marjoram is a very similar herb to oregano but is sweeter in taste and provides a more delicate flavor to your dish when compared to oregano. Marjoram will work well for rice dishes, along with other ingredients such as beans and vegetables.
  • Thyme: Thyme can be described as having an earthy, minty and slightly lemony flavor to it. Therefore thyme is a perfect herb for any dishes that are based around fish and meat. Once cooked, thyme can provide a floral flavor to the food, making it a good milk substitute for Italian seasoning.
  • Rosemary: Rosemary can be described as a pungent herb. Rosemary can give flavors of lemon, mint, sage and pepper. It’s a perfect herb to substitute for Italian seasoning as it can provide softer flavors while also being punchy in taste. As rosemary is a very strong herb, you will only need to use a little amount to substitute for Italian seasoning. Rosemary is perfect for seasoning meats as well as vegetables such as potatoes.
  • Fresh herbs: Fresh herbs are an easy substitute for Italian seasoning dried herbs mixture. Dried herbs do contain a lot more concentrated flavor than fresh herbs, but fresh herbs can add freshness and a more homemade feel to your dish. We would advise that you use triple the amount of fresh herbs than the amount of Italian seasoning you would have used. If you want a more concentrated and strong flavor to your dish, dried herbs are best. If you do not mind a light flavor but a fresher taste, then go for fresh herbs as a substitute for Italian seasoning.
Isolated bunch of spice on white background

Can You Substitute Oregano For Italian Seasoning?

Yes you can substitute oregano for Italian seasoning. However, your dish will taste different as Italian seasoning includes other ingredients other than oregano.

Oregano is rather a single spice. Replacing a multi spice ingredient with oregano will not taste the same. Oregano is a very strong spice and if you use Italian seasoning to substitute for oregano, you may have a more blended, neutral taste.

Is Oregano And Italian Seasoning The Same Thing?

Oregano and Italian seasoning are not the same thing. But Italian seasoning does include oregano in its mixture.

Italian seasoning is a combination of different herbs and oregano is included within them. Therefore Italian seasoning tastes different to oregano as it has other flavors involved in its taste.

mortar and pestle grinding herbs

Can I Use Fresh Herbs Instead Of Italian Seasoning?

Yes, using fresh herbs instead of Italian seasoning can work very well. You can either use fresh herbs as they are, or dehydrate the herbs yourself. 

If you decide to use fresh herbs as they are, you may need to use a bigger amount of fresh herbs than you would have used Italian seasoning. This is because the fresh herbs are not as strong as dried herbs. Italian seasoning is made up of dried herbs and therefore is a lot stronger. You will want to use 3 times the amount of fresh herbs to the amount of Italian seasoning you would have used.

You can dehydrate the fresh herbs yourself, which is the better way to make an authentic Italian herb seasoning substitute. The best way to dehydrate your herbs is to use a dehydrator which can be bought from a store.

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Here is a simple way that you can use your dehydrator to turn your fresh herbs into dried herbs, ready to use as an Italian seasoning substitute:

  • Step 1: Begin by pre-heating your dehydrator to anywhere in between 95 to 115 degrees Fahrenheit. If you live in a hot climate or an in area with a higher humidity you can use a temperature that is higher, such as 125 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Step 2: Rinse your fresh herbs under cold water. Attempt to remove excess moisture by shaking the herbs or drying with a paper towel.
  • Step 3: Once you dry, place the fresh herbs in a single layer on dehydrator trays.
  • Step 4: Dry the fresh herbs for up to anywhere between 1 to 4 hours.

You can also try the method to dehydrate below:

Substitute Herbs De Provence For Italian Seasoning

Herbs De Provence is a type of seasoning made from savory herbs such as marjoram, rosemary, oregano, and thyme. In some Herbs De Provence seasonings, lavender flowers are sometimes included.  

Herbs De Provence is a seasoning that is commonly used for roast meats such as roast chicken and roast lamb. Herbs De Provence seasoning is also commonly used on different types of grilled fish or vegetables.

This seasoning is a great alternative for Italian seasoning as it is made up of very similar ingredients. If you purchase or home make Herbs De Provence seasoning without the lavender flowers then you will have a very good Italian seasoning substitute as the ingredients will be the same. This Herbs De Provence seasoning without lavender flowers can be used in equal amounts to what amount you would have used Italian seasoning.

For example, if you are using 3 tablespoons of Italian seasoning, you can substitute this for 3 tablespoons of Herbs De Provence seasoning without lavender flowers instead.

Spicewalla Herbs De Provence 1.0 oz | Non-GMO, Gluten Free, No MSG | Herbs De Provence Seasoning
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Substitute For 1 Teaspoon Italian Seasoning

You can substitute 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning for a mixture of either fresh herbs or dried herbs. If you would like to use fresh herbs, they tend not to be as strong as dried herbs. Therefore if you would like to substitute 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning for a mixture of fresh herbs you will need to triple the amount of fresh herbs you would use, compared to how much Italian seasoning you would have used. For example, if you want to replace 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning then you will need to replace it with 3 teaspoons of fresh herbs.

We would recommend that you replace your 1 teaspoon of Italian seasoning for a mixture of fresh basil and fresh oregano. Therefore, for every one teaspoon of Italian seasoning you will need 1 and a half teaspoons of fresh basil and 1 and a half teaspoons of fresh oregano.

Italian Seasoning Recipe

Want to make an Italian seasoning at home? We have the perfect recipe.

You will need:

  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 glass jar

Here is a step by step method on making Italian seasoning from scratch:

  1. Step 1:

    Combine all the teaspoons of herbs into the small glass jar.

  2. Step 2:

    Shake or mix the jar well to make sure the herbs are combined.

FAQs

What Is Italian Seasoning Made From?

Italian seasoning is a blend of spices and herbs that are commonly used in a lot of Italian dishes. Italian seasoning is made of a combination of spices and herbs that can include either basil, oregano, rosemary, parsley, thyme, and marjoram. These are some of the herbs that are commonly used in Italian seasoning. It very much depends on the brand on which herbs get included in the mixture. If you make your Italian seasoning at home, you can decide which herbs are included in your recipe. It is rare but some Italian seasonings can also include ingredients such as black pepper, garlic powder, or crushed red pepper flakes.

Can I Substitute Italian Dressing Mix For Italian Seasoning?

Italian dressing mix is very different to Italian seasoning. Italian dressing mix tends to be full of at least 11 different herbs that make up its mixture whereas Italian seasoning is made up of four key dried herbs. You can replace Italian seasoning with Italian dressing mix but your dish will most likely not taste the same due to the added ingredients. We would recommend using other ingredients or other herbs as they would make better substitutes for your Italian seasoning.

There Are Plenty Of Herbs You Can Use As A Substitute For Italian Seasoning.

There are plenty of options of ingredients that you can use as an Italian seasoning substitute. However, keep in mind that a single substitute ingredient will not be able to provide the same taste as Italian seasoning, as Italian seasoning is a mixture of herbs.

We would recommend using fresh herbs and picking and choosing your favorite alternatives.

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By Anna

Hey, I’m Anna; writer, editor and amateur cook extraordinaire! Food has been my life and my passion for the most of my life – it’s crazy to think I didn’t pursue a career in cooking. I’m obsessed! However, keeping cooking as an obsessive hobby has worked for me – my passion grows as the years pass by – maybe I wouldn’t say the same if it was also my day job! I hope you find cooking inspiration, entertainment and “stop and think interesting tid-bits” throughout my writing – and I’d love to hear from you if you’ve got anything you want to share. Food feeds the soul – so get eating!

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