Spache the Spatula

Ethiopian Feast: Berbere Spice

So, for quite sometime now, I have been obsessed with the idea of creating a homemade Ethiopian feast.

This warm blend of spices is an integral ingredient in Ethiopian cuisine. | #recipeThere’s this amazing, tiny, little Ethiopian restaurant pretty close to where I live, and the food is positively addicting. Basically, different stews, salads, and other tasty dishes are all served atop a large, spongy flatbread called Injera. You get extra Injera on the side, and you tear it up and use it to scoop up the different offerings. It’s super fun and amazingly delicious!

I’ve finally decided to bite the bullet and make everything myself.

This warm blend of spices is an integral ingredient in Ethiopian cuisine. | #recipeFirst step? Making the spice blend that is used in so many Ethiopian dishes—Berbere.

The main ingredient in this african spice mixture is dried chile peppers. I pretty closely followed a recipe that I found on Epicurious, and the chile called for was New Mexico chiles. I find it hard to believe this would be authentic in Ethiopia… but we’re rolling with it! Lol. Other notable spices include paprika (I used sweet paprika to cut down the heat a bit), fenugreek seeds, and some sweeter spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves!

I’m going to be sharing a handful of other Ethiopian recipes in the next little bit, so that you too can create aa totally amazing Ethiopian feast!

Ethiopian Feast

Print Print

Ethiopian Berbere Spice

Yield: about 1 cup


  • 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds, ground
  • 1/2 cup ground dried New Mexico chiles (about 2 oz. whole chiles)
  • 1/4 cup sweet paprika
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp dried onion, ground
  • 1/2 tsp cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp cloves, ground
  • 1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground allspice


  1. Add any whole spices and the chiles to a coffee or spice grinder, and grind into a fine powder (this may take several batches).
  2. Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl. This mixture will keep in your fridge or freezer for a few months.

recipe slightly adapted from here

This warm blend of spices is an integral ingredient in Ethiopian cuisine. | #recipe


2 Responses to “Ethiopian Feast: Berbere Spice”

  1. Novi — October 23, 2016 at 3:34 am

    Hi Rachel, you offered a unique recipe here. I’m just wondering have you tried this for fried rice? Because that’s what comes to my mind reading this recipe.. I have not tried Ethiopian food before so do not have ideas the taste.

    • Rachael replied: — October 26th, 2016 @ 8:37 am

      Hi Novi! I have not, but that sounds like it could be totally delicious!

Leave a Comment