Blackening Seasoning is a combination of garlic powder and onion powder, with paprika, oregano, thyme, and dried peppers. This particular combination has a robust, full bodied flavor. It’s quick to make and easy to use. You’ll get a lot of milage from this Louisiana inspired herb and spice blend.
Blackening Seasoning is typically sprinkled onto firm fleshed fish, such as Mahi Mahi, Cod, Snapper, Grouper, Halibut and Tilapia.
The blackening cooking technique used for fish and chicken involves 3 parts. Blackening Seasoning along with submerging the food into melted butter, and lastly cooking the food in a hot pan or skillet. The end result is a rusty brown / black crust on the fish or chicken, commonly seen in Cajun cooking in Louisiana and some other southern states.
Blackening Seasoning involves only dry ingredients.
This recipe DOES NOT use salt. Add salt either directly to the food or to the blend itself. When using this with fish, I use less salt and with chicken I use slightly more.
- Onion and garlic powder. Using the powdered form of these vegetables makes them more potent in flavor.
- Dried thyme, basil and oregano
- Ground black pepper
- Cayenne and paprika peppers. This recipe uses 3 types of paprika – sweet, smoked and regular.
See recipe card for quantities.
Measure all the dried ingredients following the quantities on the recipe card.
Mix them together until well blended.
Flexibility of Ingredients
The formulation of Blackening Seasoning is not set in stone. Add more or less of any ingredient. This is a herb and spice blend that you can adjust to make it your own!
This recipe does not use salt. Add as much or as little as you choose to the seasoning blend. Blackening Seasoning offers a flavorful add-on to foods without raising sodium levels.
As mentioned earlier in this post, feel free to adjust levels of certain spices and herbs. Adding more cayenne pepper will change this seasoning into more of a Cajun seasoning.
Not only can Blackening Seasoning be used to flavor fish and chicken, but also steak, pork, vegetables and eggs. Add it as an ingredient to breadcrumbs, spiced nuts, dips and spreads. I love to use this seasoning when I make Black and Blue Burgers, it takes an ordinary burger and makes it next level!
Store in a sealed container and place in the pantry or dry cupboard for up to 1 year. To preserve freshness, I add small desiccant dehumidifier packets to the mason jar.
A Tip From Me
Making your own seasoning blends is cheaper and healthier than buying commercially made ones. There’s no MSG, sugar, or try-calcium phosphate (anti caking agent) that are often included in well known brands.
As it stores well for up to a year, it’s worth doubling or tripling the quantity and having it on hand when needed.
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I’ve got answers – hopefully!
- What is the difference between Blackening Seasoning and Cajun Seasoning? Cajun Seasoning is the base for Blackening Seasoning. Adding dried herbs and dried peppers move a cajun blend to blackened seasoning. Cajun Seasoning also typically contains a little more cayenne pepper.
- Is Blackening Seasoning the same as Old Bay? Old Bay Seasoning has its roots in Germany in the late 1930’s and made its way to the US where it is an important ingredient in seafood preparation. Its main ingredient is celery salt, with red, black pepper and paprika added. The sodium content is therefore higher. When comparing the ingredient lists between these two seasonings, it’s apparent they have two different flavor profiles.
- Can I use it as an ingredient? Yes, add a spoonful at a time to breadcrumbs used for fish and chicken. Add it to butter and melt it over vegetables. Blackening Seasoning is also a great addition to scrambled eggs.
Blackening Seasoning for Fish or Chicken
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp dried thyme
- 1 tbsp sweet paprika
- 1 tbsp smoked paprika
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp ground black pepper
- 1 tsp dried basil
- ½ tsp cayenne pepper
- Measure all the ingredients and mix together well.
- Store in a sealed container. Add a small desiccant packet to the container to absorb any unwanted moisture.