Keep a jar of this homemade spice blend in your pantry to enhance the flavor of your favorite pizzas, sauces, and stews.
Save a trip to the store! Mix up a batch of Italian seasoning substitute using dried herbs and spices you probably already have in your pantry — 2 minutes and done!
There are so many uses for this easy Italian seasoning substitute. Its savory blend is delicious sprinkled on meats or roasted vegetables, as well as in a variety of vinaigrettes, sauces, soups, and stews.
Interested in exploring more ways to create your own seasoning blends? Be sure to check out my Citrusy Salmon Rub for a sweet and spicy crust that’s amazingly good on grilled or baked salmon fillets. Or, you may enjoy this zesty BBQ Rub for finger-licking good pork ribs.
Why you’ll love this recipe!
- Simple recipe. Mix and match spices for your own taste preference.
- Quick and easy. Just measure and mix.
- A variety of uses. Adds delicious flavor to many recipes.
Key ingredients and substitutions
- Dried marjoram — Marjoram is a native Mediterranean herb and a close relative to oregano, with a sweet, earthy flavor. If you don’t have marjoram in your pantry, add a bit more oregano to the mix.
- Dried rosemary — Once dried, the leaves become brittle and tough so you may want to crush them a bit.
- Dried basil — Although dried herbs have a long shelf life, they can lose their potency. If your basil doesn’t have a strong aroma, you may want to replace it.
- Dried thyme — Don’t confuse dried thyme with the ground powder thyme.
- Dried oregano — Although you may leave out one of the other spices in this blend, oregano is essential.
- Extras — I like to add garlic powder and fennel seed, but you can also use onion powder, sage, black pepper, or a pinch of cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes to suit your own taste.
- If you’re missing an ingredient in the list, don’t sweat it. Just leave it out and add more of the ingredients you do have. You’ll still end up with a savory blend you can use in a pinch!
How to make Italian herb seasoning
STEP 1 | Measure ingredients
- Start with equal amounts of dried basil, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, and thyme.
- Add fennel seed and garlic powder or the substitutions of your choice.
STEP 2 | Blend the mixture
- You can easily break up the tougher stems by gently rubbing the spices between your fingers.
- Stir until well combined, then store in an airtight container at room temperature.
- Storage — Instead of tossing them out when you use the last bit, save empty spice jars for storing homemade seasonings. Wash and air dry before filling. Or, these 4-ounce mason jars with resealable lids make another good storage option.
Frequently asked questions
Although they contain some of the same savory spices, the French blend of Herbes de Provence usually contains lavender flowers, so it may not be a good substitute for Italian seasoning.
Tuscan seasoning and Italian seasoning are basically the same, only Tuscan seasoning is a bit more peppery. For more Tuscan flavor, add 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper and 1/2 teaspoon onion powder to the Italian seasoning substitute recipe below.
Amp up the flavor of store bought pasta sauce by simmering it with 1 1/2 teaspoons of Italian seasoning substitute and 2 teaspoons of minced garlic. By the time you’ve cooked the pasta, the sauce will be full of even more delicious flavor..
Italian Seasoning Substitute
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried marjoram
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seed
- 1 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
- Measure and add the spices to a small bowl,
- Break up the tougher stems by gently rubbing the spices between your fingers.
- Stir until well combined, then store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 months.
About Sheila Thigpen
Recipe Developer, Food Photographer, Food Writer
Sheila Thigpen is the publisher of Life, Love, and Good Food — a Southern food blog — and the author of Easy Chicken Cookbook and The 5-Ingredient Fresh and Easy Cookbook. After 20+ years in the publishing industry, she retired in 2018 to focus on her own creative endeavors full time. She and her husband live near the beautiful Smoky Mountains and have a precious little granddaughter who has stolen their hearts. As an influencer, Sheila has collaborated with brands like Creamette, Kroger, HERSHEY’S, Hamilton Beach, Garafalo Pasta, OXO, Smithfield, Valley Fig Growers, and more.