Italian seasoning is a spice blend that typically contains basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, marjoram, garlic powder, and sometimes fennel or savory. This combination adds a distinctly Italian flair with notes of woodsy, herbal, and zesty flavors. If you don’t have Italian seasoning packet on hand, you can mimic it with ingredients you likely have in your pantry and fridge.

1. Dried Herbs

The easiest substitute is to use dried herbs to recreate the Italian seasoning flavor profile. To replace a 1 tablespoon of Italian seasoning, use 1 teaspoon each of dried basil, oregano, marjoram and rosemary, and 1/2 teaspoon each of thyme, garlic powder and crushed red pepper flakes.

These amounts can be adjusted to your taste preferences. For a less spicy blend, use less crushed red pepper. For a woodier blend, add more rosemary and thyme. Play around with proportions to get the right Italian-inspired seasoning.

2. Fresh Herbs

If you have fresh herbs available, these can stand in for dried. Chop about 1 tablespoon each of fresh basil, oregano, thyme and parsley leaves. Then add 1 teaspoon minced garlic, 1 teaspoon lemon zest, 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds and a pinch of crushed red pepper.

Since fresh herbs have more subtle flavors than dried, use them soon after making this blend. You may need to increase amounts to achieve the intensity of flavor you desire. The fresh lemon zest adds brightness.

3. Herbes de Provence

The classic French blend herbes de Provence makes a good substitute for Italian seasoning. It contains many of the same herbs as Italian seasoning like basil, thyme, rosemary, oregano and marjoram. Substitute herbes de Provence 1:1 for Italian seasoning.

This French blend is missing the garlic powder and crushed red pepper components of Italian seasoning. Add a pinch of both if you want an authentic Italian flavor profile.

4. Pizza Seasoning

Premade pizza seasoning contains many of the same herbs and spices as Italian seasoning blends. Oregano, basil, garlic powder, and crushed red pepper are common ingredients. Look for pizza seasoning blends without sugars or cheese flavors added. Use a 1:1 ratio to swap pizza seasoning for Italian seasoning.

Since pizza blends focus on topping flavor, you may want to increase herbs like parsley or fennel seeds to round out the flavor for other dishes. But in a pinch, pizza seasoning makes an easy stand-in.

5. Poultry Seasoning

Savory poultry seasoning is primarily made up of sage, thyme, marjoram, rosemary, and sometimes oregano. These all complement the herby notes in Italian seasoning. Replace Italian seasoning 1:1 with poultry seasoning.

Poultry blends do not contain basil or garlic powder like Italian seasoning. Stir in some dried basil and garlic, about 1 teaspoon each per tablespoon of poultry seasoning, to get closer to the original flavor.

6. Mediterranean Seasoning

Look for Mediterranean seasoning blends that contain herbs like oregano, marjoram, thyme and basil for an Italian seasoning substitute. The addition of spices like cumin, coriander, cinnamon and allspice differentiates them from Italian blends. But the overall flavor profile is still similar.

Use Mediterranean seasoning 1:1 in place of Italian seasoning. The extra spices give it a warmth and complexity that pairs especially well with lamb, chicken and vegetable dishes.

With a mix of dried or fresh herbs, spice blends and garlic powder, you can easily recreate Italian seasoning’s aromatic flavor. Rely on your senses and taste as you go, adjusting herb quantities until you have just the right Tuscan-inspired essence.

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Julia Jane is a home cook inspired by her mother's cooking. With the desire to share my cooking experiences with everyone, she created this website

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