Your recipe for homemade pumpkin pie likely calls for the use of ground cloves. There are a lot of substitutions you can use in your pumpkin pie recipe if you run out of ground cloves, so there’s no need to panic or make a second trip to the grocery store.
What are the best alternatives to ground cloves in pumpkin pie? Fortunately, a number of pantry essentials go great with pumpkin pie and can be used in almost any recipe. Mace, nutmeg, pumpkin pie spice, allspice, and apple pie spice are the best substitutes for cloves. Now, be sure to continue reading to find out how to include each of these ground clove substitutes into your pie recipe.
Cloves are one of the more potent flavors in many pumpkin pie recipes. Pumpkin pie benefits significantly from adding ground cloves, a lovely spice with overtones of astringency, bitterness, and sweetness. When substituting for cloves, you can choose a spice that delivers a similar level of flavor or one that is a little less pronounced, depending on your particular preference.
Role Of Ground Cloves In Pumpkin Pie
The juvenile flower buds of the Syzygium aromaticum, or clove tree, are harvested when they are still very small, dried, and then ground into a fine powder. The reddish-brown spice known as cloves is indigenous to the Indonesian island of Muluka. Cloves yield a reddish-brown powder used in various recipes, including drinks, teas, desserts, pumpkin pie, savory foods (such as meats, sauces, and rice dishes), and many Christmas-themed dishes and beverages.
The flavor of ground cloves is robust, sweet, slightly bitter, and warm and spicy with an intense perfume of cloves. Although no other spice can fully replicate this flavor, a number of others can stand in for ground cloves when necessary.
Whole cloves, allspice, mace, nutmeg, cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice, apple pie spice, and Chinese five spice powder are the best alternatives to ground cloves. Let’s get into more detail about each now.
Alternatives To Ground Cloves
Looking for a cloves-free alternative? What about 12 substitutes that aren’t hard to find? All the spices that can temporarily take the place of ground cloves are available here. You probably already have the majority of these spices on hand, so there’s no need to hurry to the store.
Whole cloves are one of the most fantastic alternatives to ground cloves, and here’s why. Due to the essential oils’ rapid vaporization after being ground, ground cloves frequently lose their flavor and scent.
Therefore, choose whole cloves and pound them yourself as needed if you want to experience the authentic flavor of cloves in a recipe. Or, if the tiny small buds won’t impact the dish, use them whole.
Since whole cloves offer more flavor and perfume than ground cloves, whole cloves should be substituted in a 1:3 ratio. i.e., substitute 3 tablespoons of ground cloves with 1 teaspoon of whole cloves.
However, use a 1:1 substitution if you intend to grind the whole cloves yourself. In other words, substitute 1 teaspoon of ground cloves from a store for 1 teaspoon of cloves that have been ground.
Allspice is the next best alternative to ground cloves. Due to the similarities in flavor between ground allspice and ground cloves, it is one of the best alternatives. The Pimenta dioica berries, a member of the myrtle family, are what makeup allspice a spice.
These three spices—nutmeg, cloves, and cinnamon—combine to make the flavor of ground allspice. So it gives your foods a similar warmth.
Use allspice for ground cloves for recipes like pumpkin pie, soups, stews, meat dishes, and more. 1:1 substitution is appropriate. In other words, substitute 1 teaspoon of ground allspice for each teaspoon of ground cloves.
Mace is an additional alternative to ground cloves. This spice, a milder version of nutmeg with overtones of basil, pine, and cinnamon, comes from the outer shell of the nutmeg kernel.
It is not the first spice one would go for to replace ground cloves, but in a pinch, because of its warm, sweet flavor, it may be used in sweet and savory dishes like pumpkin pie, sauces, soups, vegetables, and even pastries.
Mace can be used in a 1:1 substitution for ground cloves.
The seed pods of many plant members of the ginger family are used to make cardamom. Cardamom comes in black and green, and both are used in sweet and savory cuisines. The cardamom flavor is warm, sweet-spicy, with overtones of mint and lemon.
In many sweets, meat dishes, curries, rice meals, baked products, and beverages, it acts as a 1:1 substitution for cloves.
Another spice to be used in place of ground cloves is nutmeg. Nutmeg can be used in place of ground cloves in recipes for pies, beverages, baked goods like muffins and cakes, soups, and more. It has a toasty, woody, sweet, and nutty flavor. Use nutmeg in a 1:1 ratio in place of ground cloves.
Cinnamon is a beautiful spice that can be used in place of ground cloves. Cinnamon may be used in place of ground cloves in recipes for cookies, pumpkin, sweet potato, apple, pieces of bread, rolls, and soups. Remember that cinnamon has a warm, slightly sweet, woodsy, and citrusy flavor.
So if you’re using it in place of ground cloves, you might want to combine it with some nutmeg because their combined taste will more nearly resemble that of ground cloves. To substitute 1 teaspoon of ground cloves, use 1/2 a teaspoon of nutmeg and cinnamon.
Black Or White Peppercorns
You can also use white or black peppercorns instead of cloves to give your dish a spicy and earthy flavor. Despite coming from the same plant, their tastes are different.
Black peppercorns have a more robust flavor than white peppercorns, which have a softer aromatic flavor and are used in meals with light colors. You can use whole or ground white and black peppercorns in a 1:1 substitution for cloves in soups, sauces, marinades, and other foods.
The star-shaped star anise seed pod often has eight peas inside of it. The pod and the seeds are used whole or crushed in various recipes.
A mighty, warm, sweet, and spicy licorice flavor resembling cloves can be found in star anise. In many sauces, soups, marinades, pies, baked goods, and other sweet or savory recipes, star anise can be used in a 1:1 ratio to replace cloves.
Cinnamon powder with other spices like ground spices, cloves, fennel, star anise, and Szechuan peppercorns, are used to make five-spice powder. However, additional components can also be used to make five-spice powder, such as turmeric, nutmeg, anise seeds, and cardamom. The flavor of the five-spice powder is licorice-like, sweet, hot, bitter, and toasty. This great flavour is brought about by the cinnamon powder.
It frequently appears in dry rubs and marinades for meats, poultry, fish, and other savory meals. This powder will offer your food a different flavor in place of cloves. But there will also be some clove undertones. Replace cloves in a 1:1 ratio with five-spice powder.
Spice for Pumpkin Pie
The five spices that makeup pumpkin pie spice are nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and occasionally allspice.
More nutmeg and cinnamon than cloves can be found in pumpkin pie spice. But because this spice blend contains ground cloves and other suitable substitutes for ground cloves, such as cinnamon and nutmeg, it can be used in a hurry to replace ground cloves.
Cinnamon Apple Pie Spice
Apple pie spice is a suitable substitute for ground cloves, just like pumpkin pie spice is for pumpkin pie. Unlike pumpkin pie spice, Apple pie spice does not contain cloves and is made up of cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, ginger, and occasionally allspice.
Although this spice mixture does not contain cloves, it has most alternatives, such as nutmeg, cinnamon, and allspice, so it can be used as a substitute in a hurry.
Powdered Chinese Five Spice
Chinese 5 spice powder is a different spice blend that contains pulverized cloves, making it a suitable replacement for cloves. This spice blend contains ground fennel seeds, peppercorns, star anise, cloves, and cinnamon.
Replace ground cloves in savory dishes like meat rubs with this spice blend. You can anticipate hints of clove taste throughout your dish even though that flavor will be slightly altered because this spice blend contains both cloves and cinnamon.
Alternatives To Crushed Cloves In Particular Recipes
Typically, pumpkin pie is made with ground clove, ginger, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Therefore, ground nutmeg, ground allspice, cinnamon, or ground mace are suitable substitutions for ground cloves in a pumpkin pie recipe.
You won’t have to worry while preparing recipes that call for cloves and you don’t have any, thanks to your knowledge of these 12 alternatives for ground cloves. The best part is that you probably already have several spices in your spice rack.
To Sum Up
As you can see, there are a lot of spices you can use while cooking pumpkin pie in place of ground cloves. Although each offers its flavor profile, they all go well with pumpkin. And whichever option you choose, you’ll have a delicious home-baked pie that’s ideal for the holidays or a special family dessert.
Hiiii! My name is Ruth and I am an experienced chef with a passion for food and cooking. My love of baking began when I was nine, and I have since been refining my skills in the kitchen ever since.