If you are thinking about warm spices, the first thing that comes to mind might be cinnamon, ginger or even pumpkin pie spice. But there is another must-have spice for the cosy season: cardamom.

Known as the “queen of spices” and the second most expensive spice, after saffron, the use of cardamom in cooking is popular across many cuisines.

Cardamom is used in cooking in three forms; In cooking, cardamom can be used in three forms – pods, powder and seeds.

Its distinctive versatility makes it worth a try, so we are covering everything you need to know about the flavour and uses of cardamom.

What is cardamom?

Part of the ginger family, cardamom is a perennial plant that produces a fruit that contains seed pods. As mentioned, the seeds from the triangular-shaped pods can be whole or ground.

The plant grows mostly in India but it is also cultivated in Sri Lanka, Tanzania and Guatemala.

Cardamom-infused recipes vary from sweet to savoury. This is because the intense spice has flavours that range from peppery and smokey to minty and herbal.

The flavour can also vary by the different colours of cardamom, which is why it is versatile enough to season curries and meat dishes but also desserts and chai tea.

It can lean towards bitter if the ground form is used in large quantities.

When it comes to cooking, cardamon is a wonderful component in many spice blends which are used to flavour various curry recipes, stews and dry rubs for meat.

As opposed to savoury dishes, it can also be used as a main flavour for baked goods, desserts or sauces such as custard. In Indian cuisine, it is often blended with ghee or butter and used to give a beautiful floral garnish to breyani and other rice dishes.

You might also have a question on how you can substitute the spice. Cardamom has a pungent flavour that is all its own so it is difficult to find a similar substitute.

It is used in aromatic curries, baked goods and mulled beverages with other spices, such as allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg and clove, so these are probably the best substitutes if you do not have green cardamom on hand.

For black cardamom, a substitute like smoked paprika or smoked sea salt will add a similar smoky flavour to recipes but will lack black cardamom’s distinctly pungent flavour.

Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (

2024-06-10T08:16:09Z dg43tfdfdgfd