A simple authentic recipe for Chinese Five Spice that takes 5 minutes from start to finish! Use this recipe in Authentic Szechuan Sauce, Szechuan Eggplant,  Szechuan Tofu, Vietnamese Vermicelli Bowls and Lightning Speed Photon Soup! Video.

A simple authentic recipe for Chinese Five Spice that takes 5 minutes from start to finish! 

Origin of Chinese Five Spice

Interestingly, Chinese Five Spice is based on the five elements – fire, water, wood, earth and metal. According to traditional Chinese medicine, the five elements are manifested in different parts of the body and when there are imbalances in these elements, illness can result. For thousands of years,  herbs and spices have been used to restore balance in the body and that is why Chinese five-spice powder came to be.

Chinese Five Spice | 30-second video!

 

What spices are in Chinese Five Spice?

The ingredients and amount of spices vary greatly from region to region and even from household to household depending on personal tastes and preference, but the most common ingredients are:

  1. Star Anise
  2. Fennel Seeds
  3. Szechuan Peppercorns ( or regular peppercorns)
  4. Whole Cloves
  5. Cinnamon Stick

 

How do you make Chinese Five Spice?

Place all the spices in a spice or coffee grinder and grind until smooth.

No need to toast the spices first if in a hurry, but of course if you have time, toasting will elevate! Place in an airtight spice jar and that is it!

So easy!

A simple authentic recipe for Chinese Five Spice that takes 5 minutes from start to finish!  #fivespice #chinese #spice

Enjoy the incredible aroma.

A simple authentic recipe for Chinese Five Spice that takes 5 minutes from start to finish!  #fivespice #chinese #spice

Store in an airtight spice jar for up to 6 months for the best flavor.

So easy and so much better than store-bought!

Use this authentic Chinese Five Spice in:

  1. Authentic Szechuan Sauce
  2. Szechuan Eggplant 
  3. Five Spice Pulled Pork Tacos with Asian Slaw
  4. Tea Smoked Five Spice Salmon 
  5. Szechuan Tofu and Veggie Stir-fry
  6. Burmese Chicken (or Tofu)  and Veggies 
  7. Lighting Speed Photon Soup
  8. Vietnamese Beef and Green Papaya Salad
  9. Vietnamese Vermicelli Bowls 
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A simple authentic recipe for Chinese Five Spice that takes 5 minutes from start to finish!  #fivespice #chinese #spice

Chinese Five Spice Powder Recipe

  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 2
  • Total Time: 7 minutes
  • Yield: ¼ cup 1x
  • Category: Spice blend
  • Method: Blend
  • Cuisine: Chinese
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Here’s a simple authentic recipe for Chinese Five Spice powder that can be made in 5 minutes flat. Fragrant and flavorful.


Ingredients

Scale

Instructions

Toast any dry whole spices in a dry skillet, until fragrant, 2-3 minutes.

Place all ingredients in a spice grinder (or coffee grinder)  and grind until smooth.

Smell the goodness.

Store in a sealed, airtight spice jar -and for best flavor use within 6 months.

Makes ¼ cup.


Notes

Lightly toasting the whole seeds/pods in a dry skillet will create a more fragrant, intense flavor.

In a pinch you could sub 1 tablespoon anise seeds, but it won’t be quite the same flavor.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2 teaspoons
  • Calories: 14
  • Sugar: 0 g
  • Sodium: 2.4 mg
  • Fat: 0.5 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 3 g
  • Fiber: 1.7 g
  • Protein: 0.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Keywords: five spice, five spice recipe, five spice ingredients, how to make five spice, chinese five spice recipe,

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Hi, I'm Sylvia!

Chef and author of the whole-foods recipe blog, Feasting at Home, Sylvia Fountaine is a former restaurant owner and caterer turned full-time food blogger. She currently lives in the Pacific Northwest and shares seasonal, healthy recipes along with tips and tricks from her home kitchen.

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Comments

  1. Hi Sylvia, thanks so much for this recipe! I really wanna make it so I can use it in a chili oil, but I don’t have a coffee grinder or any kind of grinder, really – only a blender. So, do you think there’s any alternative for how to grind it, maybe manually? I don’t have a mortar and pestle either hahah but do you think I could grind the spices manually using something similar? Thank you a lot already :))

    1. Hi Bia- in a pinch, I have used my cast iron skillet- placed spices between two pieces of parchment and ground with the skillet. Also, I bet your blender would work!

  2. Came out great. But when they say earth elements what is metal? The heavy metals in store spices? Because I don’t dig eating those. I grow my own herbs and vegetable’s so not having that!Growing Saffron now! $$$$ herb. Labor intense! Lol. Thanks for the recipe!

    1. Hi Michael- No not heavy metals. 🙂 The element of metal, in Chinese Medicine, represents Fall- a time of purging or detoxing- and this also represents “spicy” or a little heat to help support the body in doing this- in this case through the Szechuan Peppercorn. 🙂

    1. Hi Brandon- cloves, the spice. So measure that much out in the whole form, not ground cloves. 🙂

  3. Your recipes look very good I will be trying the eggplant dish and maybe a Tofu dish with the Szechuan spicy sauce. Will let you know how it works out. Thank you for sharing your skills with others. Much appreciated.

  4. I used to think Chinese 5 spice was a boring ingredient. I was so wrong.

    I tried to pick some up at the store a few weeks ago but couldn’t find any at the store, so I decided to make my own and found this recipe.

    Truly– I had no idea what 5 spice *really* was until I made it myself. Thank you for opening my eyes.