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As the big old bay seasoning comes out of the kitchen cupboard, you already know what time it is. That means it’s time to add a divine touch to your recipe, a blend that can restore any cuisine to its former grandeur and make a simple dish taste as if it were prepared by a professional chef.

Despite of how this flavor is worshiped and revered in almost every kitchen, it is not always available when needed. It may be bothersome, which is why you need different combinations that can serve as a solid substitute.

Let me to assist you since there are some Pretty fantastic old bay seasoning replacements that you can use to spice up just about any cuisine.

Cajun seasoning, crab boil, pickling spice, todds soil, celery salt + paprika, celery seed + paprika, and even homemade old bay seasoning are all suitable substitutes for old bay seasoning.

What Is Old Bay Seasoning?

Old Bay Seasoning is a ready-made blend that home cooks and chefs use to give full-body flavor to seafood, meat, salad, stew, soup, and chowder.

The condiment has a spicy flavor with hints of mustard, turmeric, and even mace. It tastes complex and can never go wrong on a meal, which is to be expected from a mix of around 18 herbs and spices.

The sole ingredients are spices (black and red pepper), celery salt (salt and celery seed), and paprika. In addition, Old Bay seasoning is kosher and has no MSG.

But, if you have any food allergies, I strongly advise you to check the label if you are acquainted with any since the contents fluctuate and certain batches are likely to include common food allergens. And if this is the reason you’ve decided to look elsewhere, we’ve got you covered.

Cajun Seasoning, Celery Salt, Chinese Five Spice, French Four Spice, Pickling Spice, Seasoned Salt, Todds Dirt, Zatarains Crab Boil, and Homemade Old Bay Seasoning are all available.

Old Bay Seasoning from scratch?

Without a doubt!

We put it in our list so that you may have complete control over the components (which you can delete or leave) and receive the most genuine taste. Nonetheless, if you believe you don’t have the time or patience, stick to your original strategy.

Best Old Bay Seasoning Substitutes

1. Crab Boil

If you like seafood, you should know that crab boil is the magic ingredient. Most crucially, this omnipresent boiling water includes main herbs and spices from the traditional bay seasoning.

Based on our research, the crab boil is the closest accessible counterpart. Depending on the brand, it features makeup that is 90% comparable to the actual thing. You’ve been equipped with handy seafood starting kits thanks to this seasoning.

Go ahead and season it with shrimp, crawfish, lobster, or crabs. Moreover, particularly in the United States, this product is constantly accessible at the grocery, supermarket, or online.

In a 1:1 ratio, replace the old bay seasoning with crab boil.

2. Pickling Spice

Don’t be misled by the name into believing it’s just for preparing pickles. Pickling spice is a mixture of spices and herbs that is used to pickle food and flavor soups, stews, seafood, shrimp boils, and other dishes.

It is an excellent substitute for Bay Seasoning since it has the same essential ingredients such as mustard seed, red pepper flakes, cloves, coriander, allspice, bay leaves, and more.

That implies you’ll wind up with a taste profile comparable to the old bay. In a 1:1 ratio, replace the old bay seasoning with pickling spice.

Despite this, the spice is fairly sweet. If you want to add a little more heat, play about with the black pepper, celery salt, and cayenne pepper.

3. Cajun Seasoning

You haven’t lived if you haven’t tasted Cajun spice as a home cook or chef. Cajun spice, which hails from Louisiana, is another fantastic all-purpose replacement that could replace the old bay any day, any time.

You’re hooked for life after your first try!

You will notice its unique ability to enhance the flavor of almost any meal. Cajun spice also includes certain traditional old bay elements such as salt, garlic powder, black pepper, red pepper, and chile powder.

But, since it is a bit later and has more kick, you may want to reduce the measurement to around two-thirds of what the recipe asks for.

Cajun Seasoning is most likely for folks who appreciate hot, spicy meals. Moreover, it has a significant advantage over the traditional bay and crab boil spices in terms of availability.

There is basically no possibility that you will not be able to obtain cajun seasoning at any shop.

4. Todd’s Dirt

Todds Dirt includes a variety of seasonings, but the Chesapeake soil is the most similar to the ancient bay. It has 20 herbs and spices, is gluten-free, all natural, contains NO MSG, and contains no allergies.

Everything tastes fantastic with it!

This one-of-a-kind gourmet spice may enhance the taste profile of your meals, whether they are vegetables, seafood, fish, crabs, shrimp, or scallops.

Do you like grilling?

Todds Dirt is an even better choice for you since it goes so great with BBQ ribs.

5. Celery Salt + Paprika

Although most people would tell you to use celery salt sparingly, adding paprika puts you even closer to the classic Bay taste.

Consider this. Both are key elements in old bay, thus partnering may be a winning combination in your dish.

Thus, if you happen to have these spices in your pantry, you already have an excellent substitution rather than heading to the store or supermarket for an old bay.

Just combine a teaspoon of celery salt and a teaspoon of paprika.

Furthermore, replace out your Old Bay seasoning in a 1:1 ratio. If you want it hot, add a sprinkle of red pepper flakes or a shake of black pepper.

6. Celery Seed + Paprika

Remember the salt dosages in old bay seasoning and the earlier blend we discussed?

If you want to reduce your sodium consumption, you may substitute celery seed for celery salt and combine it with your paprika.

Although you won’t get the full-body taste of the actual thing, you may compensate by adding powdered mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, and pepper.

7. Homemade Old Bay Seasoning

Ingredients and measures

  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1 tsp mustard
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder

Are you wondering why there aren’t more than 18 ingredients?

Since Old Bay Seasoning is a proprietary blend, the secret (full ingredients) underlying its flavour is kept a secret. Only the manufacturer’s workers have access to the whole list of genuine substances.

Nevertheless, we have a buddy on the inside, and using the components listed above, you can get close to the actual thing.

You may use whole or ground spices, and pound them individually in a mortar and pestle or a spice mill. Next, in a medium-sized mixing basin, whisk everything together.

When placing the spice and herbs into an airtight container, make sure they are well combined.

Finally, keep it cold and dry until required.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Company Makes Old Bay Seasoning?

This wonderful flavored spice is the brainchild of McCormick & Company. Gustav Brunn, a German refugee from Maryland, created the old bay seasoning in 1939, and it has since grown in popularity among other culinary spices.

What Is Old Bay Seasoning Used For?

The possibilities for old bay seasoning are almost unlimited, which is why it is everyone’s favorite culinary worker.

You may add it to a shrimp boil or match it with seafood, prepare a marinade with oil and lemon juice, or sprinkle it over pita chips, crab cakes, or tortillas.

You can also add it to slow-cooked chili con carne or rice, as well as spread it over barbecue foods and roasted veggies. It is much more delicious in salads, stews, soups, and gravies. I like it best on deviled eggs.

Can Old Bay Seasoning Go Bad?

Old bay seasoning is a dried herb and spice blend. Yet, unlike fresh mix, they don’t go bad very quickly in the classic sense.

How Can You Tell If Spices Are Old Or Have Gone Bad?

If you want to determine whether a spice is beyond its peak, look for the following telltale signs: Either the spices are no longer fragrant, are no longer providing the typical taste boost to dishes, or the color is no longer bright.

And you DO NOT want to ingest an outdated or rogue seasoning since it is associated with certain negative outcomes. As a result, look for the freshness date on the side or at the bottom of the bottle. You may even open the lid to see whether the color and perfume are still there.

Also see: Best Accent Seasoning Substitutes


So, did you obtain a better option or did you not? There is a lot to consider. Nonetheless, I believe you should choose the one that actually calls to you.

Note that they are only substitutes, which means they may not have the same taste as old bay but may be similar. And it’s worth a shot since half bread is preferable than none.

I’m curious which of the old bay seasoning substitutes you eventually settled on. Was it better than you expected, or just okay?


What else can I use instead of Old Bay seasoning?

Paprika and celery salt are excellent substitutes for Old Bay Seasoning. Paprika and celery salt are excellent substitutes for Old Bay seasoning. Cajun seasoning is a spice combination that will give your cuisine a similar taste to Old Bay seasoning…. Seasoned Salt…. Crab boil…. Chinese Five Spice.
Jul 18, 2022

Can I use Cajun seasoning instead of Old Bay?

Although it won’t produce the same nuanced variety of tastes as Old Bay seasoning, Cajun spice may be used in any of Old Bay’s more typical uses, such as seafood boils and fried fish breading. Cajun flavor only works as an Old Bay alternative if you don’ mind the increased heat.

What is the main flavor of Old Bay seasoning?


Is Zatarain’s the same as Old Bay?

Zatarain’s Crab Boil No. 2

This spice blend is often used to enhance the taste of crab and shrimp meals. It may, however, be used in place of Old Bay Seasoning in many recipes. Zatarain’s Crab Boil tastes similar to Old Bay, but with a slightly hotter flavor profile. What exactly is this?

What herb can I use instead of bay?

If you have the following herbs in your kitchen cupboard, they may be used in place of bay leaf.
Alternatives to Bay Leaf. Best bets include: … Thyme or Oregano…. Basil…. Juniper Berries…. Get Better Bay Leaves.
Jul 24, 2020

Is paprika the same as Old Bay seasoning?

The predominant chile powder in Old Bay seasoning is paprika.

What can I use instead of Old Bay seasoning without celery salt?

Garlic powder, onion powder, star anise, dill seed, fennel seed, and mustard seed are other typical components in Old Bay knockoff recipes. According to Bon Appétit, red pepper flakes are a blend of peppers, with cayenne dominating. Red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper powder, for example, can both work nicely.

What is Creole seasoning the same as Old Bay?

If you sample them separately, you’ll notice the difference and be able to taste all of the varied tastes that each offers. Creole spice tends to be hotter due to the peppers used, but Old Bay seasoning tends to be saltier due to the celery salt as its major component.

What does Old Bay consist of?

This spice mix was created more than 75 years ago in Baltimore, Maryland, and consists of celery salt, red and black pepper, and paprika.

What makes Old Bay taste like Old Bay?

The mustard, paprika, and celery salt provide the most of the taste, along with mace, nutmeg, bay leaf, red pepper, and cardamom, and although it’s an obvious combination with seafood, it’s also an unexpected spin on fried rice and chickpeas.

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