Pickling Spice

5 from 5 votes

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Pickling spice is easy to make! Use this recipe to make brine for refrigerator pickles, pickling spice for corned beef, or pickled veggies.

overhead image: jar of pickling spice

What is pickling spice made of?

Warm spices like cinnamon, clove, star anise and cardamom get broken down in a spice grinder. The other ingredients are left whole because they are a bit too strong if they’re ground up.

You can adjust the spices to whatever you have on hand, but this is my go-to blend:

  • Cinnamon
  • Clove
  • Star anise
  • Cardamom
  • Mustard seeds – You can use all yellow or all black mustard seeds if one or the other is not available
  • Allspice berries
  • Juniper berries
  • Coriander seeds
  • Bay leaves
  • Dill weed – Be sure to use whole dill seed and not ground
  • Black peppercorns
Homemade Pickling Spices in jar

Uses for Pickle Seasoning

There are countless ways to use this versatile spice mix!

Use it as a pickling spice for corned beef, then make delicious meal like corned beef potato gratin.

Another favorite of mine are pickled vegetables, and you can make a lot more than spicy refrigerator pickles. Mexican pickled carrots, cinnamon pickles, beets, lemon pickle, and many others!

Really, a pickle seasoning like this is great for any recipe that calls for aromatic spices. Add a tablespoon or two of the mix to a spice sachet bag. Then set it in a roasting pan for a slow roasted pork shoulder or in the pot with a delicious braised beef brisket!

glass jar tipped over, seasoning blend spilling out


Can I buy pickling spice?

Sure, you can buy a spice blend like this premade and ready to use. Honestly though, making your own ensures that the spices are fresh, which ultimately gives you the best flavor!

overhead shot of pickling spice
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overhead image: jar of pickling spice

Pickling Spice

5 from 5 votes
Pickling spice is easy to make! Use this recipe to make brine for refrigerator pickles, pickling spice for corned beef, or pickled veggies.
Servings: 12
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes


  • 1 tbsp yellow mustard seeds (See Note 1)
  • 1 tbsp black mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp whole allspice
  • 1 tbsp juniper berries
  • 2 tsp coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp black peppercorns
  • 2 tsp dill seeds
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 8 whole cloves
  • 5 green cardamom pods
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 3-inch cinnamon stick


  • Mix together the first 9 ingredients in a small bowl.
  • In a spice grinder add the cloves, cardamom pods, bay leaves, star anise and cinnamon stick. Pulse several times, but do not make it a complete powder. Keep it in small pieces. Add to spices in bowl and mix to combine.
  • Store in an air tight container for your pickling recipes. Makes about a 1/2 cup.


  1. You can use all yellow or all black mustard seeds if one or the other is not available.
  2. Nutrition based off 12 servings.


Calories: 19kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Sodium: 4mg | Potassium: 44mg | Fiber: 1g | Vitamin A: 50IU | Vitamin C: 0.5mg | Calcium: 26mg | Iron: 0.6mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

Course: Pantry Staples, spice blends
Cuisine: Melting Pot
Have You Made This Recipe? Let Me Know on InstagramTag @keviniscooking or tag me #keviniscooking!
titled image shows pickle seasoning in glass jar


Whether in the kitchen or on the grill, you’ll find me cooking American favorites with a love for BBQ, Mexican and Tex Mex. I’m passionate about making tasty food because life’s too short to be bland!

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  1. Looking forward to using this blend for your corned beef recipes!
    Can you link me a few other of your recipes that use this? Thanks!

  2. I work in a wonderful natural food store that carries all of these spices in the bulk section. Somewhere I read that you crush and roast the spices first, then add them to the brine. I don’t see that in your instruction, but do you do that?
    Thank you, Kevin!

    1. You could do that, definitely. I’d toast them first in a dry skillet and then crush and add. It’s up to you Sunny.

  3. 5 stars
    Thats it! The corned beef flavor. Thank you. Woe my cabbage and beef and carrots were epic. Like a corned beef spiced heaven.

  4. Hi Kevin. I’m in the middle of making this recipe. It looks very good. One minor thing though, you mention using whole dill weed and not ground. And then later on the recipe itself calls for dill seeds and not dill weed. I’m thinking that’s probably a typo.

  5. 5 stars
    Would you think that leaving the spices whole would be a problem? Do they “muddy up the fluid when you add them ground?

  6. 5 stars
    Used this for fresh pickled beets over 8 months ago and they are almost gone. But still amazing and delicious. Thank you for sharing

  7. Hi Kevin,
    Thank you for sharing this recipie. I am wondering what do you mean by whole all spice?Please can you clarify this for me . Thanks

    1. Hi Najma! Not ground allspice 🙂 The allspice berry. It’s a warm-tasting spice, similar to a combination of cinnamon and clove. Let me know how it turns out!

      1. Thank you Kevin for replying. I am really looking forward to try this after Ramadan. I will definitely let you know how it turns out. Thanks for clarifying as I kept wondering if you were referring to garam masala that we use in our Asian cooking. I searched up for all spice berry on google. Is it the one which is used more in Jamaican and Caribbean cooking. Just want to confirm so I don’t buy the wrong ingredient.
        Thank you for sharing such great and traditional recipes. I am really thrilled to find your website.

      2. Yes allspice is the one I am referring to and it’s also used in Jamaican and Caribbean cooking. Thanks for the kind words Najma!

    1. It falls a little towards the sweeter, warm side as opposed to the typical dill mustard seed blend.