Our Spices

At Olde Thompson, we use over 60 years of experience in the spice industry to ensure you receive only the finest quality herbs and spices in our mills, shakers, and spice racks. Click on the name of the spice to find helpful information on uses, country of origin, shelf life and more...

Allspice

Allspice

Allspice is dried unripe berry of the Pimenta Dioica Plant. The English name it Allspice because its flavor suggests a blend of cloves, pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Basil

Basil

Sweet basil, with its wonderful aroma and flavor, is one of the most popular and widely grown herbs in the world.

Bay Leaves

Bay Leaves

Bay Leaves come from the sweet bay or laurel tree. The elliptical leaves of both trees are green, glossy, and grow up to 3 inches long.

Caraway

Caraway

Caraway Seed is the fruit of an herb in the Parsley family know as Carum carvi. The small brown seeds are about 1/5th of an inch long and have a sweet but tangy flavor.

Cayenne Pepper

Cayenne Pepper

Cayenne pepper is a very hot red powder from the dried pods of pungent chili peppers.

Celery Seed

Celery Seed

Celery seed is the dried fruit of the Apium graveolens which is closely related to vegetable celery. They are very small light-brown seeds that give the flavor and aroma of celery.

Chili Powder

Chili Powder

Chili Powder is made of a mix of various ingredients consisting of: dried ground chili peppers, cumin, garlic and oregano. Not to be confused with "Chile Powder" which is simply dried and ground Chile Peppers. Many people enjoy making their own chili powder blends, but you can find an abundance of Chili Powders commercially available.

Chives

Chives

Chives are an onion-like plant in the lilly family. They are pronounced in plural as they grow in clumps rather than one. Chives grow from bulbs with long hollow tubular leaves. They have a similar but milder flaver than onion and garlic.

Cinnamon

Cinnamon

Cinnamon is harvested from the dried bark of a small evergreen tree native to Sri Lanka and Southern India. Shoots are stripped from the inner bark and left to dry. The shoots then curl up into rolls which are the familiar cinnamon sticks (“quills”) which we see in the marketplace.

Coriander

Coriander

Coriander is the seed of a plant (Coriandrum sativum) in the Parsley family. They are round and tan in color measuring about 1/5th of an inch in diameter. They are described as giving a nutty citrus flaver when crushed.

Cumin

Cumin

Cumin is the seed of the plant (Cuminum cyminum) which is in the parsley family. It is generally used in the ground form and has a warm but distinctive flavor and aroma.

Dill Weed

Dill Weed

Dill is an annual of the parsley family and is related to Anise, Caraway, Coriander, Cumin, and Fennel. Dill Weed is the dried leaves of the herb Anethum graveolens, the same plant from which Dill Seed is derived. The flavor of Dill Weed is lighter and more subtle than Dill Seed. Dill has a dominant personality and a well-rounded tang. Dill Weed has a similar but mellower and fresher flavor. Stronger tasting than the leaves, seeds are used whole or ground in longer-cooking recipes.

Fennel

Fennel

Fennel seed is brown or green in color. It is an aromatic spice that is similar in flavor to anise but less strong.

Garlic Powder

Garlic Powder

Garlic powder is a spice, or powder, made from pounding garlic. Garlic a member of the same group of plants as the Onion.

Ginger

Ginger

Ginger is the root of the plant Zingiber officinal. It is usually used in a dried and ground, or crystalized form and found in cuisines throughout the world.

Italian Seasoning

Italian Seasoning

Our Italian Seasoning is a special blend of aromatic herbs which include basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme and other spices to create an all purpose seasoning with a well rounded flavor. It is used primarily in Italian dishes.

Malabar Pepper

Malabar Pepper

Pepper is the most popular spice in the world, and once so highly valued that it was traded ounce for ounce for gold. It has a warm, woody smell that is fresh, pungent and agreeably aromatic.

Marjoram

Marjoram

Marjoram is a grey-green leaf of the undershrub Majorana hortensis that is a plant in the mint family. It has a sweet pine and citrus flavor and is related to Oregano.

Mustard

Mustard

Mustard Seed comes from two commercially important classes of herbs, Brassica juncea (brown mustard) and Brassica hirta (white mustard), native to Asia. Both plants produce bright yellow flowers that contain small round seeds; brown mustard is more pungent than white. Both types exhibit a sharp taste.

Oregano

Oregano

Oregano is an aromatic, sweet, but slightly bitter herb that is most often used in Greek and Italian cooking. It is generally used in a dried form which is more flavorful than fresh. Closely related to Marjoram.

Paprika

Paprika

Paprika is a spice which comes from a mild red pepper in the family Capsicum annum. It is a brilliant red powder and often used as a garnish. Paprika contains more vitamin C than citrus fruits and is an excellent source of vitamin A.

Parsley

Parsley

Parsley is the leaf of a biennial herb (Petroselinum crispum). There are two types of parsley used as herbs: curly leaf parsley which is generally used as a garnish, and Italian parsley which is used as a flavoring to dishes.

Poppy Seed

Poppy Seed

This spice is the seed of the opium poppy. The seeds do not contain any narcotic property. The seeds are tiny kidney-shaped, slate blue in color and are crunchy texture and nut-like in flavor.

Rosemary

Rosemary

Rosemary comes from the perennial herb Rosmarinus officinalis in the mint family. The fragrant needle-like leaves are used in flavoring many dishes.

Sage

Sage

Sage is an herb from an evergreen shrub, Salvia officinalis, in the mint family. Its long, grayishgreen leaves take on a velvety, cotton like texture when rubbed (meaning ground lightly and passed through a coarse sieve).

Savory

Savory

Savory is an annual herb, Satureja hotenis, belonging to the mint family. Its dark-green, narrow leaves are dried and crushed. It has a clean, piney fragrance and peppery flavor.

Seasoning Salt

Seasoning Salt

Seasonings include black pepper, salt, herbs and spices, and all other condiments. Salt may be used to draw out water, or to magnify a natural flavor of a food making it richer or more delicate, depending on the dish.

Sesame Seed

Sesame Seed

The small cream-white sesame seeds are the seed of an annual herb, Sesamum indicum and are well known in the United States for their use on hamburger buns. They have a nutty flavor and also exude an oil that is used for cooking.

Tarragon

Tarragon

Tarragon is a small, perennial herb, in the sunflower family cultivated for the use of its aromatic leaves for seasonings. Two species are cultivated, Russian and French. Leaves of the French variety are glossier and more pungent. Most commercial Tarragon comes from dried leaves of the French Tarragon plant. French tarragon is the variety generally considered best for the kitchen, but cannot be grown from seed. Russian tarragon can be grown from seed but is much weaker in flavor.

Tellichery Pepper

Tellichery Pepper

Recognized as the finest quality pepper in the world, Tellichery peppercorns are the largest and most aromatic of the peppers.

Thyme

Thyme

Thyme is the leaf of a low-growing shrub in the mint family called Thymus vulgaris. It is generally used dried and chopped. It should be added early in cooking so its oils have time to be released.