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Apr 24, 2012 06:54 AM

McCormick Spice - Ground Cumin

Does anyone know the difference between the ground cumin in the 2oz plastic jar with the red lid for $3.39 and the 1.5oz glass bottle with the black lid for $5.69?

If there is a difference is it worth the extra price?


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  1. I doubt it's worth it. If your grocer has a Mexican aisle you should be able to find quality cumin seed there for a fraction of what you'll pay for McCormick's.

    5 Replies
    1. re: Perilagu Khan

      Agreed. If you're going to buy McCormick, go to the Mexican/Hispanic/Goya aisle and get Badia....minimal packaging and probably will cost you .69.

      1. re: pinehurst

        There's also a brand called Fiesta that is very good and muy cheapo.

        1. re: pinehurst

          I agree. I've been doing that for years. There's no reason to buy McCormick if you can find an alternative.

          1. re: pinehurst

            +! pinehurst, and those above. You will find cumin in the Mexican aisle often taste better! Yes usually 69 cents or so. A critical difference is often McCormick in a store does not turn over as often. When fresh cumin tastes better than old cumin.

            Use fresh ground cumin from seed if you can. I use my magic bullet with the flat blade. Find my coffee grinder for spice and blender don't get it done. Is best to buy fresh whole spices where you know they turn over often. Toast whole in a dry non-stick pan to release essential oils and grind fresh for each use when able.

            Winco has a good deal on fresh bulk ground cumin and whole cumin seed here and they go through what they have every couple days so is fresh.

            Cash and Carry also has a great deal on cumin as does Costco here. But at both find get more fresh quality cumin than can use for the price you are talking about.

            Cumin will add great flavor to meat made with a can of crushed tomatoes. I especially love the taco taste in taco salad. Good cumin is a key to great tacos, omelets, pizza, & salad. I add a touch of cumin to salsa sometimes for a 'taco' variation. Be careful as a little bit goes a long way and can overpower when learning to use cumin.

            1. re: smaki

              It's soooo easy to make your own. For under $1 you can buy a bag of cumin seed -- I can find Badia in my local Giant market as well as at the Mexican grocery stores. Toast it for a few minutes in a dry, non-stick skillet, and grind it up. I use a re-purposed coffee grinder with a whirly-blade. Store it in a small air-tight glass jar and it'll be good for months.

        2. Their website describes the "Gourmet Collection" cumin as being Indian, whereas the ordinary kind is not identified as to origin. Even if there is a difference, part of the cost difference is packaging, and both are expensive given the quantities needed for many dishes. I buy it in larger quantities in a plastic pouch from an Indian or Mexican grocery, and provide the container myself.

          1 Reply
          1. re: GH1618

            At the price some of these brand named spice places sell things for, it would be more cost effective to buy in bulk.... along with a vacuum sealer and a mason jar attachment for sucking air out of mason jars, and then putting the spices in vacuum jars. God knows how long these small jars are in the supply chain.

          2. Depending on where you live, you should be able to find a 14 oz plastic jar of the McCormick for about $6 at Costco or a restaurant supply house. If you have a Costco Business Center nearby, you can get 5 pounds of another good brand for about $18.

            1. To answer your question, the Gourmet Collection spices have higher volatile oil content. Volatile oils are what give spices their flavor and aroma.

              1. Neither worth the price. Like other posters have mentioned. You should go to an Indian spice store. You can buy much greater quantity with better quality and at lower price. Give the extra to your friends and coworkers.