9 Substitute for Caraway Seeds That Have More or Less the Same Flavors You Need for Your Dish

Caraway Substitute

Are you looking for any or every available substitute for caraway seeds?

Because ‘You were in the middle of creating a master dish.

And, it demanded a bittersweet, nutty flavor seasoning to satisfy the Gordon Ramsay in you.

Looking everywhere for that one magic spice, the caraway seeds, you realized you used it all last week while preparing your delicious dinner, goulash with rye bread.

Now, what?

You are searching the Internet for all the caraway seed alternatives you can find.

Hey, stop rummaging through long useless results.

You are in the right place!

The following list is the ultimate solution to your query of ‘what can I use instead of caraway seeds?’

9 Substitute for Caraway Seeds for a Similar Flavor

You may ask, what is the best caraway seed substitute depending on the type of dish you want it for? Well, the answer is right here, in our guide!

For Biscuits or Bread: Dill, Anise seeds, and Dried Oregano

For Stew or Curries: Fennel, Nigella, and Cumin seeds

For Soups: Dill, Cumin, and Coriander Seeds

For Pickles or Cabbage Dishes: Anise, Star Anise, and Coriander Seeds

Let’s get to know more about how you can use each of the mentioned substitutes for caraway seeds.

1. Fennel Seeds

Fennel Seeds

Caraway Vs. Fennel is a hot debate in the spice world.

People always ask, ‘Are caraway seeds the same as the fennel seeds?’

Sure, they belong to the same family, but fennel has a robust licorice-like flavor compared to the mild-flavored caraway.

Additional: Do you know fennel can also be a fenugreek seeds substitute?

When can you use fennel seeds as a substitute for caraway seeds?

Use this in Italian, Indian, or Middle eastern recipes.

Fennel seeds are quite different from caraway seeds in flavor. However, they both have similar essence and licorice notes, making it your primary substitute for caraway seeds.

fennel seeds info

How to substitute fennel for caraway?

You can use an equal quantity of fennel seeds instead of caraway, which implies if your recipe says to add 1 teaspoon of caraway, you should use the same amount of fennel seeds.

Suggested Dishes:

2. Anise Seeds (Aniseed)

Anise seeds

There’s no such competition as anise vs. fennel; which is the better substitute for caraway seeds? But if your dish demands a strong flavor and aroma, anise seeds should be your ultimate preference.

Are caraway and anise the same?

Anise and caraway seeds swap depends on the type of dish you are preparing as they share a common licorice flavor, but the former can be quite hotter and stronger.

Best substitute to use while cooking bread or cookies.

Remember, it can be overpowering if used in high quantity.

How to use anise seed as a substitute for caraway?

You can use half the quantity of anise seeds instead of caraway, which implies if your recipe says to add 1 teaspoon of caraway, you should use ½ teaspoon of anise seed.

anise seed info

Suggested Dishes:

  • Roasted Pork
  • Rye Bread

Bonus: You can also try sous vide corned beef.

3. Dill Seeds

Dill Seeds

If you have no caraway seeds to finish your recipe, but you found dill seeds in your cabinet. It is all you need to get the same taste out of your dish as these both belong to the Apiaceae family.

When can you use dill seeds as a caraway replacement?

Caraway and dill seeds share the same family, which explains the somewhat similar taste, i-e citrusy scent with mild bitterness.

Dill seed substitute is perfect for light dishes, cream-based soups, dishes with cabbages, and rye bread.

dill seeds info

How to substitute dill for caraway?

You can use the same amount of dill seeds for caraway, which suggests that if your dish ingredients say a teaspoon of caraway, you should also use a teaspoon of dill seeds.

Suggested Dishes:

4. Nigella Seeds

Nigella Seeds

Nigella seeds are among the old spices used widely since ancient Egyptian times. It has a similar caraway punch to it and pairs well with other seasonings in savory dishes.

Why nigella seeds are a worthy replacement for caraway?

The distinct mixed flavor and aroma of cumin, oregano, onion, and licorice make it the worthy replacement of caraway.

Pro-tip: Remember to toast fry nigella seeds before using them as a substitute for best results.

How to use nigella seeds instead of caraway?

It has a slightly pungent, bitter, and intense flavor. Therefore, a pinch of Nigella seeds is enough to use in place of caraway seeds to make your servings equally delicious and tasty.

Nigella seed substitute is best suited for stew, curry, and delicious bread like Indian naan, rye naan, etc.

nigella seeds info

Suggested Dishes:

  • Spiced Roasted Chicken
  • Indian Naan

5. Star Anise

Star Anise

Star anise has a unique flavor and aroma like the caraway seeds. It is a versatile spice that adds a unique taste to the dish if used in a small amount.

What can you use if you don’t have caraway seeds?

Like fennel, anise, dill, and nigella seeds, star anise pods have a licorice aroma and flavor, making it to our list of substitutes for caraway seeds.

Star Anise info

How to substitute star anise for caraway?

It has a sweet but intense flavor of licorice and can outshine all the other flavors of your dish. But, if used only a pinch, it can add a sweet and savory flavor to your serving.

Suggested Dishes:

  • Simmered Chicken
  • Beet Pickled Egg

6. Cumin Seeds

Cumin Seeds

Caraway is a prominent seasoning in the bread, meat dishes, and pickles whereas, cumin is added in sauces, stews, and curries, which makes it a suitable option to use.

Pro-tip: Use cumin seeds for caraway seeds and ground cumin for ground caraway.

Can you use cumin as a caraway seed replacement?

Cumin is a widely used spice in South Asian and Indian dishes, while caraway is mostly added in German, Eastern, African, Asian, or Central European food.


They are similar looking and often confused as the same spice.

Cumin seeds are hotter, and flavor can be quite powerful for some dishes, but it can also be a suitable replacement for caraway seeds if you want to add a delicious flavor to the plate.

cumin seed info

How to use cumin seeds in place of caraway?

You can use the same amount of cumin seeds instead of caraway seeds, which means if your dish ingredients list says to use 1 teaspoon of caraway, you should also add 1 teaspoon of cumin seeds.

Suggested Dishes:

  • Cheesy Cauliflower Soup
  • Mushroom and Brown Rice Hash with Poached Eggs

Other Substitute for Caraway Seeds

Caraway seeds are packed with a punch of robust flavors that can be delivered well with related spices and herbs like fennel, anise, dill, nigella, star anise, and cumin seeds.


There might be other similar spices and herbs lying around in your kitchen cabinet you don’t know you can use instead of caraway.

celery Seeds info

1. Celery Seeds

Celery Seeds

Celery seeds can deliver a rich taste of caraway seeds in potato, carrot, German beet salad, coleslaw, and other foods.

Bonus: Prepare your salad dressing with an instant salad cutter bowl. Save your time and effort! (Give it all to devour the final dish :p).

How to Substitute: The same amount of celery seeds for the same amount of caraway

Suggested Dishes:

  • Sweet potato & pickled salad
  • German Cabbage Slaw

2. Dried Oregano

Dried Oregano

Dried oregano can be your optional choice if your dish demands a concentrated spicy taste with a flavorful peppery aroma.

How to Substitute: A pinch of dried oregano is enough to add the taste you require

Suggested Dishes:

  • Cheese Dip
  • Pork Chops

3. Coriander Seeds

Coriander Seeds

Coriander seeds have a similar earthy and nutty taste identical to the caraway seeds. If your dish requires you to add caraway and, unfortunately, you don’t have it. You can use coriander seeds instead.

How to Substitute: An equal quantity of coriander seeds for an equal amount of caraway seeds

Suggested Dishes:

  • Pickled Vegetables
  • Beef and Noodle Soup

Bottom Line

Got no caraway seeds? Try any of our mentioned substitutes for a final savory boost to your dish.

This is it from our side, kitchen witches!

We hope your search for a caraway seeds alternative is complete with this guide.

Which spice or herb do you plan to use for your dish?

Share your thoughts or other substitutes for caraway seeds with us.

Happy Cooking, Foodies!

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