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    4 Spice Subscription Boxes That Anyone Who Cooks Will Love

    Easy ways to spice up the holidays.

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    A subscription box stuffed with curated spices and seasoning blends makes for an especially fun gift for anyone who enjoys cooking at home.

    Columbia Records

    As a former chef who particularly geeks out over this sort of stuff, when I discovered that there were several subscription boxes filled with seasonings, spice blends, and other interesting ingredients — along with recipes, images, and even music playlists — I decided to check a few of them out. Much like the many varied meal kits on the market, each box is geared toward people of different skill and interest levels, and they're available at different price points.

    Here's a look at four of the best:

    Piquant Post, an assortment of spices for anyone looking for simple recipes using gateway flavors from different parts of the world.

    Erik Mathes / BuzzFeed

    What it is: Each month’s package comes in a branded cardboard envelope with four region-specific spices/blends along with four recipe cards. You’ll also get online access to more recipes, substitute ingredients, and other ideas for how to use your kits beyond the included recipes. One month you might get an Indian-themed spice kit including earthy-hot garam masala and chaat masala, along with recipes for saag tofu and chicken tikka masala; the next you might find a Caribbean mix of Jamaican jerk seasoning and sweet gingerbread spice, with recipes for gingerbread pancakes and Jamaican fish stew.

    What my box included: A “reimagined Thanksgiving” kit with chipotle spice, herb vinaigrette seasoning, curry powder, and peppermint chai and recipes for green beans with shallot herb vinaigrette, chipotle sourdough stuffing, cranberry curry lentil soup, and peppermint chai loaf.

    Who it's great for: Anyone looking to expand their culinary horizons with the flavors of varied regions. It's also the perfect choice for anyone who prefers to control their sodium and carb intake, since there are no sugars, stabilizers, or preservatives are included in any of Piquant Post’s products.

    Price: $9.99/month for a 12-month subscription; $10.99/month for a six-month subscription; $11.99/month for a monthly subscription.

    Get it here.

    Spice Madam, a box that gets extra points for presentation and includes tons of info about the month's themed region (plus a playlist!).

    Erik Mathes / BuzzFeed

    What it is: A subscription especially suited for gifting, thanks to its elegant presentation in a beautifully branded maroon cardboard box, Spice Madam includes an assortment of spices from a particular region or country. Each delivery includes an information card about the featured country (including a link to a music playlist of artists from the region so you can “set the mood while you cook”), notecards explaining what the spices are, and recipe cards for several different dishes.

    What my box included: My package was filled with flavors of Syria: Aleppo pepper, dried mint, and da’ah, a blend of cardamom, cloves, nutmeg, allspice, black pepper, and cinnamon typically used in lamb dishes. The six cards for recipes included suf’souf salad, Syrian vermicelli rice, m’hammara (a spicy, savory, and sweet dip with red bell peppers, olive oil, and walnuts), and barazek cookies, and the box also came with a super-helpful Syrian shopping list, menu plan, and cooking guide.

    Who it's great for: People at any cooking level who have discerning taste and appreciate packaging and presentation as much as the spices and helpful information included.

    Price: $20/month.

    Get it here.

    SpiceBreeze, a subscription that includes an unpredictable mix of flavors and recipe ideas from either two or four different regions.

    Erik Mathes / BuzzFeed

    What it is: An assortment of spices you don’t see every day (like makrut lime, galangal, and nigella), along with recipes for dishes you've probably never heard of, but that are easy and fun to prepare. Examples include Indonesian rendang, rougail from La Réunion (a tiny island in the Indian Ocean), Scandinavian pepparrotssas, and tibs from Ethiopia —  recipes totally new to my culinary repertoire, despite years of culinary school and working in restaurants. The package arrives in a nondescript white envelope that doesn’t offer much excitement, but the contents inside will surprise and intrigue novice home cooks and serious chefs alike. The spice packets come in a pamphlet with an image of something notable from the featured region, plus info about the herbs and spices.

    What my box included: Each of the four recipes in the SpiceBreeze Quad Kit comes with two corresponding resealable spice packets, so you get eight total spices/blends. In mine: a fragrant mix of lemongrass, galangal, makrut lime leaves, coriander, and turmeric; red chili flakes; a French-inspired blend of thyme, turmeric, and bay leaves; bright green powdered makrut lime leaves; an earthy blend of cardamom, cumin, nigella, and fenugreek; a fiery hot, cayenne-heavy blend of earthy spices and bright herbs; powdered horseradish; and organic dried dill weed.

    Who it's perfect for: Curious cooks and food nerds of any skill level who want a diverse mix of recipes from different regions (instead of recipes from just one country at a time) as well as extra information about the spices and recipes they receive.

    Price: $5.90/month for a Duo Box (two kits); $11.85/month for a Quad Box (four kits); or $39.90 for a one-time special gift box.

    Get it here.

    Culinarie Kit, which goes beyond just spices and blends and includes sample-size bottles of liquid ingredients and other ~cheffy~ surprises.

    Erik Mathes / BuzzFeed

    What it is: Whereas other subscription boxes include recipes and educational materials, the quarterly Culinarie Kit encourages subscribers to head to its website for recipe ideas, details on each ingredient, and links to the manufacturers — showcasing that it’s crafted for more serious home cooks who don’t necessarily need or care about getting information and instructions as much as they want an awesome set of curated ingredients.

    What my box included: A small bounty of gourmet products (nestled in a rustic white cloth), from black truffle sea salt and organic extra-virgin olive oil infused with oregano and thyme to California golden balsamic vinegar and hickory liquid smoke. There was also dark balsamic vinegar from Sparrow Lane, a seasoning mix called “Infinity Blend” (described as “a freshly toasted everything bagel with a hint of campfire”) from Smelly’s Brunch, and a 1.75-ounce jar of Herbs de Poulet’s “Oo-La-La,” a sage- and tarragon-heavy blend that’s recommended on grilled chicken and in chicken salad. For good measure, they also throw in a stainless steel bar of “chef’s soap” (to help rid your hands of food odors), and an ever-essential mini rubber duck decked out in chef’s gear (to add cheer to your kitchen).

    Who it's great for: Avid home cooks who love discovering new, premium ingredients and experimenting with different flavors.

    Price: $49.95/quarter for a quarterly subscription (or one-time box); $47.95/quarter for a yearly subscription.

    Get it here.

    Subscription boxes were provided to BuzzFeed free of charge but we were not obligated to positively review them.

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    Allison Krausman / BuzzFeed