10 Best Allspice Substitute Options Everyone Should Know

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Last Updated on May 23, 2023 by Toya

Here is the best allspice substitute plus 9 other ways to substitute for allspice in a pinch.

Allspice is a complex sweet aromatic spice. Many people, when they see the term ‘allspice’ in a recipe think they need a spice mix with multiple types of spices. In reality, allspice is simply the flavor from a single type of berry. This single berry has a flavor reminiscent of a mix of nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves with peppery notes and sometimes notes of star anise.

allspice substitute

In a recipe, it is used both as a ground allspice powder and as whole allspice berries.

Allspice is used in many recipes including spiced baked goods, pies, and ham glazes and it is actually the key ingredient in Jamaican jerk seasoning. 

If you’re making a recipe that calls for allspice, the best option is always to use the exact ingredients called for, especially if it is a star ingredient in the recipe. 

However, you may not have any in your kitchen or you may not be able to find allspice in your local grocery store.

In any of these cases, here are the best ways to substitute for allspice in a pinch.

What are the best substitutes for allspice?

The best ways to substitute for allspice are:

  • DIY Allspice mixture
  • Pumpkin pie spice
  • Apple pie spice
  • Cinnamon + Nutmeg mix
  • Nutmeg + Cloves mix
  • Chinese 5 spice
  • Chai blend

Common ways to substitute for allspice 

DIY allspice mix or the best substitution for allspice

spices to make allspice

One of the best substitutes for allspice is a DIY allspice mixture. Since allspice has a unique flavor that is reminiscent of a mix of cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon with hints of pepper, it is quite easy to make an allspice mix that comes close to replicating the flavor of allspice.

To make it, you’ll need equal parts ground nutmeg, ground cloves, and ground cinnamon + a pinch of black pepper. Mix these together and use the mixture in place of allspice in any recipe at a 1:1 ratio for an excellent all spice substitute. 

That is, if a recipe calls for 1 teaspoon of allspice, you will make a mixture that consists of ¼ of a teaspoon of cinnamon, ¼ of a teaspoon of cloves, ¼ of a teaspoon of nutmeg, and ¼ of a teaspoon of black pepper.

Pumpkin pie spice

pumpkin pie spice

Pumpkin pie spice is a spice mix with spices like ground cinnamon, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, ground allspice, and ground cloves

While it does have the addition of ground ginger, it can still work since ginger is a warming spice. I’ll also recommend adding an extra pinch of black pepper to this allspice replacement. Mix and use as a 1:1 ratio.


cinnamon powder

If you have cinnamon powder on hand, but you have no nutmeg or cloves, it can be used as a good alternative. 

On its own, cinnamon does not have the same complexity as allspice and I personally would only use it on its own to replace allspice, if it was my last resort.

I like to mix in a little black pepper with the cinnamon to make the flavor a bit more complex. I always mix ¼ teaspoon of black pepper into ¾ of a teaspoon of ground cinnamon as a sub when I’m lacking allspice. To me, this is only an okay alternative to allspice, but it will add some warmth to your recipe. 

Apple pie spice

apple pie spice

While the ingredients may change based on the brand you get yours from, Apple pie spice blends are usually made with ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, and ground allspice. Therefore, apple pie spice can make an excellent allspice alternative even though their flavors are not an exact match. With this all spice alternative, start by using a little less, then adjust to your liking. 

Nutmeg + Cloves mix

I’ve also just tried a 50/50 mix of ground cloves and ground cinnamon with a pinch of black pepper. It works in a pinch, but this all spice substitute is not an excellent choice. Since it’s lacking the cinnamon flavor, I only use this when I have no other choice. Still, it will add some warmth and complexity to your recipe and it is much better than using nothing. 

Chinese five spice

Chinese 5 star spice

If you can get your hands on Chinese 5 spice or 5 spice powder, you’ll have another worthy allspice substitute. Different brands of Chinese 5 spices vary some of the spices in the mix but generally are made with a mix of cinnamon, fennel, cloves, star anise, and white pepper or ginger.

It is a sweet, spicy, warm spice like allspice and so can be used as a substitute in certain baked goods, spice rubs, roasted meats, and stir-fries. This spice mix does have stronger star anise notes compared to allspice. 

Chai blend

Since the chai blend is a combination of warm spices like ground cinnamon, ground ginger, ground cardamom, ground nutmeg, ground cloves, and ground black pepper, you can make it work as a replacement for allspice in a pinch. It works because all the flavors of allspice are in a chai blend plus some more. Therefore, it will easily add that complex flavor to your recipe plus a little something extra.

Chia blend is a great all spice alternative if you don’t mind the extra flavors, so start by using less and adjust to your taste.

Allspice berries substitute

Whole nutmeg, cinnamon sticks, and whole cloves

If you don’t have any allspice berries, but you’re making a recipe like allspice dram that calls for allspice berries, then you can use a combination of whole nutmeg seeds, cinnamon, cloves, and some black peppercorns to make it.

Start with a little, then adjust on the 4th day if you find it isn’t aromatic enough.

Also, in a recipe like pickling spice, you can substitute the allspice berries by simply adding a little more cinnamon, a little more cloves, and some nutmeg.

Whole allspice to ground allspice 

If your recipe calls for whole allspice berries, you can use ground allspice as a substitute. This allspice substitution will not work for every recipe. One place where it can work though is in stew recipes. For example, if you’re making a stew recipe like Jamaican Oxtail Stew, you can replace the allspice berries with ground allspice. 

Use this conversion ratio: 1 teaspoon of whole allspice berries = 1 teaspoon of ground allspice according to Mccormick

Allspice substitute without cloves

The best allspice substitute without cloves is a 50/50 mix of ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg. This mix will give you a bit of complexity without the taste of cloves. Also, add a pinch of black pepper to this substitute for allspice without cloves to replicate some of these peppery notes of allspice. 

Recipes with allspice

Here are a few recipes where you can use some of these allspice substitutes:

Crab boil seasoning

crab boil seasoning


Instant pot pork ribs

pork ribs

FAQs about allspice

What is the substitution of 1 tsp allspice?

The best substitution for 1 tsp of allspice is ¼ of a teaspoon of cinnamon, ¼ of a teaspoon of cloves, ¼ of a teaspoon of nutmeg, and ¼ of a teaspoon of black pepper.

No, they are not the same. Allspice is a dried, round berry native to Jamaica that is ground into a fine powder or sold as whole berries. Cloves are dried nail-shaped flower buds that are sold whole or as a powder. Allspice does have notes of cloves in its flavor, and both of these spices are used in many of the same recipes, but they are very different. 
homemade allspice

10 Best Allspice Substitute Options

Yield: 1 teaspoon
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Total Time: 2 minutes

Enjoy the warm, multidimensional flavor of allspice with this simple allspice substitute! Also, check out 9 other great ways to substitute for allspice in any recipe!


  • ¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground utmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon of ground cloves
  • ¼ teaspoon of black pepper


  1. Mix all the ground spices together in a small bowl and use in any recipe that calls for allspice.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 1 Serving Size: 1 teaspoon
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 4Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 2mgCarbohydrates: 1gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 0g


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