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Where do you buy your spices?

n
NotJuliaChild Nov 29, 2010 11:14 AM

Where do you buy your spices? Are you partial to any brand in particular?

  1. todao Nov 29, 2010 11:29 AM

    I buy most of my dried herbs and spices a local "World Market" in small cello bags. When I get them home I store them in air tight containers. That way I use them up before they lose their potency and I get a good deal (the prices on cello bag packages are sometimes 1/3 of what a comparable amount of a major brand of herb/spice would be in the market) so it's a win/win all the way around.
    If I can't find what I need at "World Market" I simply buy the cello packs from my regular market (they're sometimes hard to find because they don't stock them in the same place as the major brands).

    1 Reply
    1. re: todao
      v
      Val Nov 29, 2010 11:56 AM

      +1 for World Market small packets...though I still do buy a few Badia packets, like their whole black peppercorns for 64 cents (1 ounce packet I think?)...I used to love Badia chili powder until they changed the recipe and now salt is the #2 ingredient, such bull-honkey!...switched to the World Market chili packet after that. If I can't find what I need at World Market, like whole green cardamom, I buy it at our Asian food store.

    2. Rubee Nov 29, 2010 11:56 AM

      I'm a big fan of Penzey's, as you can see ; )

      http://www.penzeys.com/

       
      6 Replies
      1. re: Rubee
        todao Nov 29, 2010 12:00 PM

        Wow!! A beautiful selection. Those quantities would go to waste in my kitchen however. I just couldn't use that much in a year's time so I'd end up tossing it out and replacing it at huge expense after a year.

        1. re: todao
          s
          scunge Nov 29, 2010 12:13 PM

          I live near a patel brothers the spces move also fresh fresh ginger

          1. re: todao
            Rubee Nov 29, 2010 12:15 PM

            Thank you. Yes, I love to cook, especially all different cuisines and culture so they get used up pretty fast (well, except for the dill weed, can't remember why I bought that). We also eat out less often now that we've moved from dowtown Boston to Phoenix and have family stay over every weekend. I didn't even take a picture of the larger jars/bags of Penzey's spices I use most often stored in the pantry. ; )

          2. re: Rubee
            f
            FishTales Nov 29, 2010 12:46 PM

            We've been using only Penzeys spices for 20+ years now. Years ago one of their stores was about 20 minutes away. We've moved & now order online a few times a year. We freeze what's not immediately needed.

            Cheers!

            1. re: Rubee
              gaffk Nov 29, 2010 02:40 PM

              Definitely Penzeys. Some people have a spice rack, I have a spice cabinet, and at least 80% is Penzeys. Luckily (or maybe sadly) I live within easy driving distance of the store. I don't think I'd buy so much if I couldn't open and smell the sample jars next to each variety and snag the recipe cards they display around the store.

              1. re: gaffk
                coney with everything Nov 30, 2010 04:46 AM

                My spice cabinet is slowly migrating to 80% Penzeys, with a few things from ethnic markets thrown in.

                Love the small containers, as this means the spices get refreshed frequently...Penzeys store 3 miles away!

            2. r
              rednails Nov 29, 2010 12:32 PM

              I am lucky enough to live within 10 miles of a Penzey's store, so now I buy everything there, unless it's an emergency (as in, I needed sage last week for my stuffing and was almost completely out so had to go to the local supermarket). I went to Penzey's twice this past weekend--yes twice, as I didn't realize I was out of something after I got home the first time. Rather than hit the supermarket (overpriced, quality not as great, can't buy bulk packages) I made a detour from another shopping trip in the area and went back.

              1. junglekitte Nov 29, 2010 12:44 PM

                Usually in an Indian or Middle Eastern grocery that goes through them quickly.

                1 Reply
                1. re: junglekitte
                  m
                  magiesmom Nov 29, 2010 01:06 PM

                  I buy all my spices in bulk at my local co-op in very small quantities. The herbs we don't grow I also buy there, but try to grow most herbs we need.

                2. h
                  Harters Nov 29, 2010 01:54 PM

                  Usually at the supermarket. For hard to find items, from the relevent ethnic shop.

                  1. c oliver Nov 29, 2010 02:05 PM

                    There's a "natural foods" grocery nearby that has a really good selection of bulk spices. I can buy small amounts that I use quickly and replace. Or not if it's some special dish. I recommend that route highly not only for the freshness but because it's crazy cheap. Ten cents, a quarter. Cheap.

                    1. Jay F Nov 29, 2010 02:17 PM

                      I buy a lot of my spices at Penzey's, because it's where I go for ground ancho and Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt, which form the base of a "magic powder" I use as a dry rub (w/cayenne, garlic powder, cumin).

                      But I'll buy spices at the supermarket, too, if that's where I happen to be. I usually get the smallest size available. I've heard good things about the spices available at Trader Joe's; I'll probably buy some there next.

                      1. h
                        HillJ Nov 29, 2010 02:55 PM

                        World Spice Merchants
                        http://worldspice.com/home/home.shtml
                        Outstanding prices, simple packaging, whole or ground to order, fantastic customer service, you pay after you purchase (one option you don't see online!), quick to ship and always fresh!

                        I have tried Penzey's at the recommendation of many and believe WSM to be far superior in every way.

                        1. Samalicious Nov 29, 2010 03:04 PM

                          For grocery store spices I've had pretty good luck with the Archer Farms Organic brand at Super Target. They come in one-ounce bottles so they're not a lifetime commitment.

                          1. al b. darned Nov 29, 2010 07:23 PM

                            While I buy my spices online from a number of sources I am partial to The Spice House. (www.thespicehouse.com) They tend to be a bit less expensive than Penzey's in most cases. I also like The Savory Spice Shop. (www.savoryspiceshop.com)

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: al b. darned
                              s
                              Siun Nov 29, 2010 09:42 PM

                              I happily live just a few blocks from Spice House and they are amazing. Brilliant selection, great people and really good prices.

                              1. re: al b. darned
                                b
                                beachmouse Nov 30, 2010 06:42 AM

                                For us, it's a mix of Penzey's and the Spice House. Each seems to have a few things that the other lacks. Price-wise they tend to end up pretty much even for us after shipping costs are figured in.

                              2. n
                                NotJuliaChild Nov 29, 2010 08:05 PM

                                I'm a fan of Spices, Inc - www.spicesinc.com

                                Incredible variety and superb cusomter service.

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