A good pumpkin pie spice is a wonderful thing to have on hand in the Fall and Winter months. You can buy mixes pre-made, but some brands will sneak in unwanted filler ingredients. It's almost always cheaper to make your own spice mixes at home. Plus, when you make your mixes at home, you are in control and can tweak the ratios to make the perfect blend. This is my favorite blend for pumpkin pie spice, which you can use in all sorts of recipes. I've used in with baked sweet plantains, in pancakes, and even in my coffee! It also goes really well with hot buttered rum. I'll give you the ratios so you can scale the mix to meet your needs as well as a sample mix.
Pumpkin pie spice mix is not only delicious, there are also some pretty significant health benefits associated with all of the individual spices. Let's take a look at them:
Cinnamon has a long history of use as a medicinal spice. It has been shown to aid in blood sugar regulation in people with Type 2 Diabetes by significantly reducing hemoglobin A(1c) and fasting blood glucose levels after 3 months of supplementation.
Nutmeg has been shown to have anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) and anti-diarrheal effects. It may also be useful in reversing skin photoaging due to UV exposure by increasing collagen production (although that's in a petri dish with cell cultures -- hasn't yet been translated into an application for live humans).
Ginger is well-known as an excellent supplement for gastrointestinal ailments, good for treating nausea, vomiting, motion sickness, and helping to stimulate digestion. But did you know it also shows promise as a a treatment for cancer?
"Increasing volumes of literature showed eugenol [the active component of cloves] possesses antioxidant, antimutagenic, antigenotoxic, anti-inflammatory and anticancer properties. Molecular mechanism of eugenol-induced apoptosis [cell death - meaning the eugenol kills the cancer cells] in melanoma, skin tumors, osteosarcoma, leukemia, gastric and mast cells has been well documented."
Allspice, the berry from the Pimenta dioica plant, has been shown to also have high levels of eugenol, like cloves, meaning that it should carry the same benefits as cloves. Also, the constituents of allspice have been shown to have very high free-radical scavenging properties and metal chelating capabilities, making it an excellent antioxidant.
Enough with the science articles, here's the recipe! I hope you enjoy it :-)
My Favorite Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix
Prep time: <5 minutes
Cook time: n/a
Total time: <5 minutes
- 6 parts ground cinnamon
- 3 parts ground nutmeg
- 2 parts ground ginger
- 1 part ground allspice
- 1 part ground cloves
- Measure all spices and place inside an empty spice jar. Use a utensil to stir, or simply shake the jar until spices are fully mixed.
- To make a small batch (a little over 2 Tbsp) mix 3 tsp cinnamon, 1-1/2 tsp nutmeg, 1 tsp ginger, 1/2 tsp allspice, and 1/2 tsp cloves. Scale recipe up or down using the given ratios depending on your needs.
Where to Buy Spices
I am a big fan of both the Mountain Rose Herbs and Frontier bulk organic spices. The following are my affiliate links to buy these products. My full affiliate disclosure is here. You can also see if there is a health food store, natural grocery store, or local co-op in your area that has a bulk spice section -- that way you don't have to buy a whole pound of the Frontier spices at a time!