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Savory Tweaks: 7 BEST Zaatar Substitutes

Are you a fan of zaatar? If yes, then this post is for you!

Zaatar has been popularly used across many Middle Eastern cultures to add flavor and layering to dishes.

But what if the ingredient isn’t available or you’re just in search of something different?

You need not worry about that anymore as we have come up with the 7 best substitutes for zaatar!

Unlike other posts that lack proper information on acceptable replacements for the spice mix, ours offers succinct yet very thorough details on various alternatives that will add a unique, robust taste to your meal without compromising its authenticity.

Get ready to embark on an exciting journey down the world of herbs and spices!

What’s Zaatar?

Zaatar is a spice blend that originates from the Middle East.

It is typically made with thyme, sumac, sesame seeds, and salt.

Zaatar has a savory, earthy flavor with a hint of sweetness.

The spice blend can be used in a variety of dishes, such as dips, spreads, soups, stews, and casseroles.

The history of zaatar is believed to date back to ancient times.

The exact origins of the spice blend are unknown, but it is thought to have originated in either the Mediterranean region or the Middle East.

Zaatar was mentioned in an ancient Egyptian medical text dating back to 1500 BC.

The spice blend was also mentioned in the Old Testament of the Bible.

Today, zaatar is widely used in Middle Eastern cuisine.

It is often used as a dip for bread or as a seasoning for meat and vegetables.

Zaatar can also be used to make a tea known as zaatar tea.

This type of tea is traditionally drunk for its medicinal properties.

7 Best Zaatar Substitutes

1. Harissa Spice Powder

Harissa spice powder is a great substitute for zaatar.

It has a similar taste but is slightly spicier.

Harissa can be used in the same way as zaatar, on bread or in dips.

To substitute Harissa for Zaatar, simply use the same amount of Harissa as you would zaatar.

The taste will be slightly different, but it will still be delicious.

2. Italian Seasoning

Italian seasoning is a blend of dried herbs that are commonly used in Mediterranean cooking.

The most common herbs in Italian seasoning are oregano, basil, thyme, rosemary, and sage.

This blend of herbs has a very strong flavor and can be used to season a variety of dishes.

Italian seasoning has a very strong flavor and can be used to replace zaatar in many recipes.

If you are looking for a Zaatar substitute that will give your dish a similar flavor, Italian seasoning is a good option.

When substituting Italian seasoning for zaatar, use half as much as you would use zaatar.

3. Shichimi Togarashi

Shichimi Togarashi is a Japanese spice blend that typically includes chili pepper, orange zest, ginger, and nori seaweed.

While the ingredients can vary, these are the most common.

The spices are ground into a powder and used to add flavor to dishes like noodle soup or rice.

The taste of Shichimi Togarashi is fairly complex.

The chili pepper gives it a bit of heat, while the ginger and orange zest add some sweetness and citrus flavor.

The nori seaweed adds a savory umami flavor.

Overall, it is a very well-rounded spice blend that can add a lot of depth to any dish.

If you’re looking for a Zaatar substitute, Shichimi Togarashi is a great option.

It has a similar complex flavor profile that can really enhance the taste of your food.

Plus, it’s easy to find in most supermarkets.

4. Ground Coriander

Ground coriander is a common spice used in many cuisines.

It has a mild, nutty flavor and can be used in both sweet and savory dishes.

Ground coriander can be used as a substitute for zaatar.

When substituting ground coriander for zaatar, it is important to keep the ratio of spices the same.

For every teaspoon of zaatar, use one teaspoon of ground coriander.

This will help to maintain the flavor of your dish.

Ground coriander can be used in many different dishes.

It is a common ingredient in curries and spice blends.

It can also be used to season roasted vegetables or sprinkled on top of salads.

5. Thyme

Thyme is a fragrant herb that has a slightly minty taste.

It is one of the most popular herbs used in cooking and can be found in many different cuisines.

Thyme can be used as a Zaatar substitute if you are looking for something with a similar flavor profile.

The taste of thyme is similar to that of zaatar, with a slightly minty flavor.

However, thyme is not as pungent as zaatar and has a more subtle flavor.

If you are looking for a Zaatar substitute that is less pungent, then thyme is a good option.

To substitute thyme for zaatar, simply use it in place of zaatar in any recipe.

Thyme can be used fresh or dried, so it is easy to find at most supermarkets.

6. Dukkah

Dukkah is a blend of spices, nuts, and seeds that originates from Egypt.

It’s typically made with hazelnuts or almonds, cumin, coriander, and sesame seeds.

The ingredients are roasted and then ground into a coarse powder.

Dukkah can be used as a seasoning for meat or vegetables, sprinkled over salads or yogurt, or even used as a dip for bread.

The taste of dukkah is nutty, earthy, and slightly spicy.

The texture is crunchy, and the flavor is well-balanced.

If you’re looking for a substitute for zaatar, dukkah is a good option.

To use dukkah as a substitute for zaatar, simply sprinkle it over yogurt or salad, use it as a seasoning for meat or vegetables, or use it as a dip for bread.

7. Mixed Herbs

Herbs are a great way to add flavor to your food without using salt.

There are many different types of herbs, and each one has its own unique taste.

Some common herbs include basil, oregano, thyme, and rosemary.

Mixed herbs are a blend of several different herbs that can be used to flavor food.

Mixed herbs have a strong, earthy flavor that goes well with savory dishes.

If you’re looking for a Zaatar substitute that will add some serious flavor to your food, mixed herbs are a great option.

Just use a teaspoon or two in place of zaatar in your recipe.

You may need to experiment with the amount you use, depending on how strong you want the flavor to be.

Mixed herbs can be found in the spice aisle of most grocery stores.

If you can’t find it there, try an herbal store or online retailer.


In conclusion, we have looked at seven of the best substitutes for zaatar.

Each of these spices has a unique flavor that can be used to replace zaatar in a dish.

I hope this blog post has been helpful in finding a Zaatar substitute that suits your taste.

Let us know in the comments below which spice you will be using next time you’re looking for a Zaatar substitute.

7 Best Zaatar Substitutes You Should Try

5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Substitutes
Servings 1 Serving


  • 1. Harissa Spice Powder
  • 2. Italian Seasoning
  • 3. Shichimi Togarashi
  • 4. Ground Coriander
  • 5. Thyme
  • 6. Dukkah
  • 7. Mixed Herbs


  • Select your favorite ingredient from the list above to use as a substitute.
  • Follow the instructions and use the exact ratio of ingredients as directed.
  • This will help to ensure that your dish turns out just as delicious as it would have with the original ingredient.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!