DamnGoodRecipes Logo
Sign In Join Submit Recipe Submit Article

Why are spices so expensive?

Leave a Comment

I don't know about anyone else, but I've noticed that the price of most ground seasonings and spices seems to be ridiculously high in grocery stores here in New York.

McCormick seems to have a near-monopoly on ground seasonings, albeit a very wide selection. Their selection does include things like ground and crystalized ginger, which is in the "gourmet" section in several stores here.   Things like ground marjoram or cumin will cost around  $4+ for a 1.25 ounce (35 g) container. Yet, even common seasonings like ground oregeno are still priced like that.   The smaller 0.37 ounce (10g) McCormick containers are still priced in the $3 range, which is a lot considering how much you get.

I can find common seasonings like cinnamon, oregano, garlic powder and basil in other brands much cheaper, especially store brands. For example, one chain here sells a 2..4 ounce (70g) container of garlic powder in its store brand for $0.99, yet the same McCormick version would cost several dollars more for some reason. The problem is only these very common spices seem to be available in other brands. If you want something a little more "exotic", you're mostly stuck with McCormick with few exceptions.  I haven't really noticed much difference between McCormick and other brands in terms of quality.

Leave a comment

You are submitting anonymously. To submit under your username, please Sign in or join.

We won't share or display your email address.
Ervin Kuersten Jr. on 2023-04-10

Try Spice Barn on line. I have found them great for spices and price. McCormick prices are out of this world. Total rip off.

Steve on 2018-09-02

After seeing what McCormick charges for spice, I can see why North America was discovered as a result of spice import/export. McCormick is a ripoff. I was told to buy minced garlic today. $6.48 for the McCormick product vs $2.48 for another in the same store. McCormick is a great target for Proctor and Gamble but I am assuming that McCormick has rebuffed advances from P and G. Salt would be $10 for a 6 oz container if McCormick controlled it. Thank you Morton.

Steve on 2018-09-02


Vinny on 2016-03-31

Advice from someone who makes homemade chorizo sausages; Order your spices from Amazon, buy them whole and not powdered, use a spice grinder every time, don't waste money on fancy glass bottles, use old ones or zip lock, keep them in a dark place. You will find you saved money and gained flavor. I promise.

s on 2014-07-22

thu arivu ila means dont have sense

Czee on 2013-10-17

1.6oz Ground Cinnamon at Albertson's grocery store was $12.99 ...Unbelievable!!!!!!

Anonymous User on 2012-04-22

Honestly i am in two minds on whether to take stand for or ganiast. you are simply sharing your own point,i appreciate it. For some it will ring true for others it may not resemble their experience at all. I’m simply encouraging dialogue in the hope others will get the support they need.

Anonymous User on 2012-04-22

Send a bottle of safron. It's the most expensive spice at the grocery store (~$ 13/bottle). I think it would be a good gift, because it's something a normal person wouldn't splurge on. It goes into paella, and I'm pretty sure he could put it in any rice dish to enhance the flavor.I would look at the nicer rices too, like Arborio, and send some of that.

Anonymous User on 2011-03-13

This is late, but you can definitely find spices for cheap in bulk bins at certain stores. Do some research to find out which stores offer bulk bins. I bought cinnamon for 52 cents per ounce at Henry's Marketplace.

nonsense on 2007-07-30

A 1.75g container of ground cardamom was about $10.