Spice Sugar Recipe

Spice sugar is a fall treat around our house. It's our introduction to Halloween and everything that follows.

How to Make Spice Sugar

I throw lots of spices together with sugar to make a mixture that I can use in pies and cookies. It's a kitchen sink kind of thing, but I'll give you some rough proportions. I've done this with both brown and granulated sugar. Brown sugar is relatively wet, so I make small batches (half the recipe below) and use them within a couple of weeks.

Spice Sugar Recipe

3 Cups granulated sugar (either superfine or not - superfine will typically have a stronger aroma)
20 Allspice berries (slightly smashed)
10 Whole cloves
4 Cinnamon sticks (broken into one inch pieces)
5 Star anise
1 Nutmeg (cracked into a number of pieces, not ground)
10 Cardamom seeds (slightly smashed)

I combine all the ingredients in a glass jar with a tight fitting lid (a screw top, actually). After shaking thoroughly, I keep it on my countertop out of the sun, shaking it every couple of days. It'll be ready to use in three weeks to a month. Strain to remove the spices.

You can use the spices a couple of times before discarding them. You can also just remove the sugar you need and keep adding new sugar to the spice jar over the winter months. This mixture will make your house smell the way a Norman Rockwell painting looks.

Special Spice Sugar Notes:

  • If I have one around, I'll also add the zest of an orange to the mix.

  • In a pinch, I've used the ground version of a couple of these spices, but fresh smells and tastes (I think) better.

  • The ingredients can get expensive to start, but once you have the spices, you can double or triple this spice sugar recipe and make up batches as gifts. This is a nice hostess gift, especially if you combine it with your favorite spice cookie or cake recipe (Hint: Leave the spices in the mixture for dramatic effect).

Photo courtesy of Zsuzsanna Kilian at Stock.Xchng


  1. So do you simply replace ordinary sugar in recipes with this spice sugar? Does it work best in fairly plain recipes where the spice flavour comes through, or is it ok in recipes with other flavours and the spices just add to the mix?

    I've never seen or heard of spice sugar before, so I'm entranced!

  2. Hi Melinda,

    Spice sugar can take the place of regular sugar in sweet and some savory dishes. It's also a tasty addition to tea (if you like your tea sweet), coffee, oatmeal, cooked winter squash, steamed carrots or baked sweet potatoes.

    It's a bit strong just sprinkled onto a slice of buttered toast, but it can add a lift to cookie and cake recipes that are a bit bland, like: sugar cookies, peanut butter cookies, oatmeal cookies or pound cake. I like using it in marinades too. I add a tablespoon to my teriyaki marinade, and have been known to put just a pinch into my stewed tomatoes. It can also add an interesting touch to citrus marinades.

    I'm forgetting a bunch of potential applications, but you get the idea. Good luck. Oh, and even of you don't use it in many recipes, it smells wonderful just sitting in a shaker on your kitchen counter.

    I hope you try it.


  3. Thank you - I'll be getting the spices I don't already have and mixing it up this weekend. :-)


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