Native to Europe, Angelica root is prized for its many health benefits including digestive aid, headache reliever, and antispasmodic.
This thick, knotted root has a licorice-like scent that can be added to tea blends as well as food and flavorings.
The plant is also known to have antifungal properties that can help heal skin irritations like eczema and psoriasis.
Unfortunately, Angelica root can be hard to find in some areas and when it’s available it’s often pricey.
Fortunately, there are some good alternatives that offer similar health benefits without the hefty price tag or hard-to-find factor.
In this article we’ll explore five of the best substitutes for Angelica Root so you can enjoy the same medicinal benefits without spending a fortune or making a special trip to the grocery store.
What is Angelica Root?
Angelica root, otherwise known as Angelica archangelica, is a tall biennial plant in the Apiaceae family.
Its scientific name comes from the Archangel Gabriel who, in Jewish and Christian tradition, blessed it with a distinctive aroma.
The root has been used since ancient times as a medicinal herb.
It possesses anti-inflammatory and gastroprotective properties that make it beneficial for treating digestive problems such as indigestion and nausea.
Its leaves are used to flavor dishes such as salads and are high in various vitamins and minerals.
Angelica root can also be found in perfumes, candles and soaps because of its unique scent.
When using angelica root for culinary purposes or as a supplement, it is important to note that it can be difficult to acquire some varieties – particularly wild varieties – without a permit from your local Natural Resources department.
The availability of angelica root also depends on the season; typically you’ll find this herb from late spring until early autumn.
How to Use Angelica Root?
Angelica root, also known as “Angelica archangelica”, is an herb from northern Europe which is used in traditional medicine to treat many ailments.
It has a complex flavor that is both earthy and slightly bitter, with a hint of tarragon.
Angelica root can be used to create unique teas, jams, jellies, and other foods to give them an exotic flavor.
When cooking with angelica root, it is important to use it sparingly as the flavor can become overwhelming if too much is used.
When buying fresh angelica root, carefully examine it for signs of rooting or mold as both will diminish its flavor.
If using angelica root as a spice or herb in a recipe, use very little at first and experiment with the amounts until you get the exact desired outcome in terms of taste and texture.
Can you use angelica root in tea?
Angelica root is an aromatic herb that is popularly used in tea.
Its botanical name is Angelica archangelica and it belongs to the Apiacea family.
The plant itself can grow up to five feet tall and its root is used primarily for its healing and medicinal purposes.
It has a sweet, earthy flavor with subtle notes of sage, which makes it a great addition to tea, though not everyone appreciates its flavor or aroma.
5 BEST Angelica Root Substitutes to Try
When it comes to cooking with herbs and spices, angelica root is an often-underappreciated option.
Used in many traditional dishes like breads, cakes, and soups, angelica root imparts a slightly sweet flavor with a hint of bitterness.
If you can’t find this flavorful herb in your local grocery store or spice shop, then try these five BEST substitutes for angelica root to liven up your recipes.
1 – Caraway Seeds
Caraway seeds are one of the most common alternatives to angelica root due to their similar flavor profile.
With a mild anise-like taste, these small seeds make a great addition to a variety of dishes.
Caraway is used in many cuisines around the world and can be used as a substitute for angelica root in spice blends, marinades, and stews.
Just be aware that caraway has an intense flavor and should be used sparingly or the food may become overpowering.
To substitute angelica root with caraway seeds, use half the amount of caraway than you would of angelica root.
2 – Celery Seeds
If you are looking for an angelica root substitute that has a mild licorice flavor, celery seeds may be a perfect solution.
They are known to have some of the same medicinal properties as angelica and can be used as an alternative in many recipes.
Celery seeds come from the same species of plant as celery and have been used in traditional medicine and cooking for centuries.
They usually vary from light yellow to brown in color.
In addition, they have a slightly spicy flavor that is milder than angelica root but can still add depth of flavor to a dish or drink.
It’s important to note that when substituting with celery seed, you should use about half the amount that would normally be required for angelica root since it is more potent than the seeds.
It may take some experimentation to determine the correct quantity but you should begin with less rather than more so as not to overpower your dish with too much celery flavor.
3 – Fennel
Fennel is an easily accessible and widely used substitutes for angelica root.
It is also known as “anise” and has a strong licorice flavor that many people love.
The bulbous vegetable is composed of a white base and feathery fronds, somewhat similar in appearance to celery.
All parts of the fennel are edible, with the bulb being the most commonly used in cooking recipes.
Fennel seeds are also frequently used in teas and tinctures due to their potent aroma and flavor.
In terms of flavoring, fennel will give you approximately the same taste as angelica root but will not provide any medicinal benefits due to its lower concentration of essential oils when compared to angelica root.
Fennel can be used as a fresh herb, or dried out for use in some specific applications such as seasoning mixes or creams.
4 – Star Anise
Star anise is another great substitute for angelica root.
A common ingredient in Indian and Chinese cuisine, star anise resembles the shape of a star and has a strong licorice flavor.
Although it will give your dish a different flavor than angelica root, it can impart similar sweet and savory notes when used in small amounts.
Star anise can also be used whole or grounded depending on the desired consistency of your dish.
If whole, star anise should be removed from the pot once it has released its flavor to prevent overpowering aromas.
When ground, consider adding more baking spices for more depth and complexity in the flavor profile.
Either way, star anise will give your dish a unique kick that you won’t get with angelica root.
5 – Parsley
Parsley is a versatile herb and can be a flavorful substitute for angelica root.
It has the same green, grassy flavor that angelica root has but is not as pungent or intense.
Parsley provides antioxidants and fiber, as well as vitamins B12, C and K.
Additionally, it contains calcium and iron which helps improve the production of red blood cells in the body.
Parsley should be added to dishes toward the end of cooking as its flavor will become more potent if cooked for too long.
It also pairs well with other strong flavors such as garlic and onions.
In conclusion, Angelica root is well-known for its fragrant aroma and many purported health benefits.
It can be used in small amounts to flavor food, beverages and herbal remedies.
However, Angelica root can be difficult to find outside of specialty stores or herbal suppliers.
Fortunately, there are a variety of substitutes available that can be used as alternatives to Angelica root.
We hope this article has been helpful in explaining the potential uses of each substitute and how they differ from Angelica root.
Whether you’re looking for a flavor substitute, an herbal remedy alternative or something new to experiment with in the kitchen – these suggestions are sure to get you started on a new journey.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Angelica Root?
Angelica root is a perennial herb native to North America, Europe and Asia.
It has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine and European herbalism as a tonic and digestive aid.
The roots, leafstalks, and seeds of the plant are used to make various medicinal preparations.
What are the 5 best substitutes for Angelica Root?
The 5 best substitutes for Angelica Root are: ginger root, fennel seed, cardamom, dill seed, and parsley root.
What are the uses of Angelica Root?
Angelica root is used as a tonic and digestive aid, to treat indigestion and stomach cramps, to reduce inflammation, and to stimulate the immune system.
It has also been used to treat respiratory conditions such as bronchitis, and to reduce menstrual cramps.
Carrie is a food writer and editor with more than 15 years of experience. She has worked for some of the biggest names in the food industry, including Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, and Martha Stewart Living.
As the Editor in Chief of IntroChicago.com, Carrie oversees all of the content on the site. She also manages the team of contributing writers and editors, who help to create delicious recipes, helpful tips, and informative articles that you’ll find on the site.
A native of the Chicago area, Carrie is passionate about all things food. She loves trying new restaurants and experimenting with new recipes in her kitchen. She’s also a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, so she knows a thing or two about food!