Top 8 Fenugreek Substitutes You can Choose!

There is a list of the top 8 fenugreek substitutes in the article which will help you if you run out of fenugreek. You will surely find the options helpful and you will be able to create a dish with a unique flavor.

What is Fenugreek?

What Is Fenugreek? – Fenugreek has been used throughout history as a spice to enhance the sensory experience of food. Additionally, it is known for its anti-diabetic, anti-carcinogenic, hypocholesterolemic, antioxidant, and immunological properties. Aside from its therapeutic value, it is also used as a food stabilizer, adhesive, and emulsifier in various food products. Additionally, it is used to produce healthy and nutritious extruded and bakery products. The present paper reviews the nutraceutical properties of fenugreek and its use in a variety of products. A few of the health benefits of fenugreek include lowering cholesterol and triglyceride levels, reducing heartburn, reducing inflammation, and increasing appetite.

What Does Fenugreek Taste Like?

  Fenugreek Substitute

When fenugreek seeds or leaves are a bit raw, they produce an overpowering bitterness. However, when cooked, the flavor of fenugreek is sweet, slightly nutty, and reminiscent of burnt sugar when added to dishes. 

Top 8 Fenugreek Substitute 

Here is a list of the top 8 fenugreek substitute:

  • Mustard Seeds
  Fenugreek Substitute
Fenugreek Substitute

To get the earthiness of fenugreek, mustard is an excellent fenugreek substitute. Furthermore, it does not have a sweet taste. Moreover, it can effectively replace fenugreek seeds with its flavor combination. Yellow mustard seeds are the best kind to use. Their aroma can be reduced by heating them slightly, which will make them taste even more like fenugreek. Fenugreek seeds are perfect in savory sauces and soups that contain mustard seeds—heat mustard seeds at a low temperature to create the same fenugreek flavor. You will need to add the same amount of mustard seeds as the recipe calls for fenugreek seeds.

  • Maple Syrup 
  Fenugreek Substitute
Fenugreek Substitute

For a person who has never tasted fenugreek, you can use maple syrup as an example to describe its flavor. It is essentially sweet but has a hint of bitterness in the background. It is because both fenugreek and maple syrup contain a compound called sotolone. In both, sotolone contributes to their similar flavors and aromas. The taste of fenugreek is so like maple syrup that artificial maple syrup uses it as a flavoring component.

It is essential to use maple syrup sparingly as a fenugreek substitute. In many dishes that need fenugreek, maple syrup’s sweetness may not be desirable. It should also be added at the end of the cooking process because its flavor can fade when it is cooked. Maple syrup can be substituted for both fenugreek leaves and seeds.

  • Fennel Seeds 
Fenugreek Substitute

The flavor of fennel seeds can overpower the flavors of a dish, but a small number of sweet sources can be fenugreek substitutes. Fennel is a flowering plant that grows in India, the Middle East, China, and Europe, and its seeds are often used in foods. Fennel seeds and bulbs have a scent similar to licorice or maple.

Fennel seed or chopped fennel bulb can be used in place of fenugreek. Fennel seeds and bulbs are sweeter, but they can reproduce some of their sweet and nutty flavors. Using fennel as a substitute for fenugreek should be done with caution as the fennel seed can overpower a dish, but a small amount will add a lot to the flavor profile.

  • Curry Powder 
  Fenugreek Substitute
Fenugreek Substitute

Curry powder is easier to find than straight fenugreek. In addition, you can always substitute this ingredient for that nutty and distinct spice.

Curry powder should be added to the initial cooking process to maximize taste and aroma. For instance, if you make a dish, add the powder first, then cook in vegetable or olive oil. Masala curry powder has a more robust aroma of cloves, cinnamon, and cardamom than regular curry powder.

  • Chinese Celery Leaves 
  Fenugreek Substitute
Fenugreek Substitute

Chinese celery looks like regular celery but has a more robust peppery and pungent flavor. Raw is rarely consumed, but it can be added to stews or paired with lamb, ham, chicken, and turkey to give them some zing. Generally, celery can be used in stir-fries, but it can also be used as an herb to enhance flavor.

Its slightly bitter and hot taste makes it a suitable replacement for fenugreek. Additionally, it will add a distinctive flavor to the recipe; all you have to do is toss a few leaves after preparing it. You can, however, add some ground mustard seeds to intensify the aroma. 

  • Kale 
  Fenugreek Substitute
Fenugreek Substitute

If you are making a casserole that calls for fenugreek, you may want to consider using cooked kale instead. Kale should be cooked to reduce its bitterness, and sugar should be added for sweetness.

You should wash and chop the kale leaves before cooking and then add them to the sauce or dish before serving. The cabbage family includes kale, which is a popular leafy vegetable. The leaves of different species can be curly or smooth, green or purple. Kale also has several health benefits.

  • Spinach 
  Fenugreek Substitute
Fenugreek Substitute

Like kale, spinach is packed with nutrients. It is possible to replace fenugreek with spinach, but the vegetable has a similar aroma and texture to the spice, making it a good substitute.

In terms of flavor and texture, collard greens can be used as a substitute for fenugreek. Spinach becomes more aromatic and acidic when cooked, so you need to be cautious when adding it to a dish since it will affect the other flavors. 

  • Alfalfa Sprouts 
  Fenugreek Substitute
Fenugreek Substitute

Fenugreek can also be substituted with alfalfa sprouts. In addition, It is an excellent fenugreek substitute in different recipes because of its mild, nutty, and sweet flavor. 

Even when cooking with fenugreek, you’ll still get the slightly bitter and sweet undertones you’re used to. However, the taste is relatively mild, so that you can use them in a 1:1 ratio.


The distinctive taste of fenugreek adds the needed sweetness and hotness to a lot of recipes and dishes. However, several dishes are available. If you are out of fenugreek, maple syrup is probably the best option. Sweet and bitter notes combine to create an amazingly balanced taste. The taste of fenugreek is similar to that of maple syrup, which is why it is used instead of maple syrup. For a bitter, nutty, and sweet taste, use maple syrup at the end of the cooking process, as its flavor quickly fades when heated. Hopefully, you liked my article on Fenugreek substitutes. Try the given options and share your experiences in the comment section.

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