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Blackening Seasoning

Blackening is a Cajun cooking technique used to prepare meat and vegetables. While the outcome of blackening looks spicy, the result is warm and savory; our homemade blackening seasoning pairs with fish, shrimp, beef, chicken, and vegetables. 

blackened seasoning for mahi mahi
staged blackened seasoning

Blackening Seasoning

Tressa Jamil
Blackened seasoning is a combination of spices and herbs that combine to create a blackened "crust" for anything from fish to chicken.
Prep Time 5 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course Spice Blends
Cuisine Cajun, Creole
Servings 0.5 cup
Calories 134 kcal


  • 1 ½ tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon oregano
  • 1 ½ tablespoons smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cumin, ground
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, coarse ground
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper


  • Add all of the ingredients to a mixing bowl; stir to combine.
  • Store the spice blend in an air-tight container.


Serving: 1 CupCalories: 134kcalCarbohydrates: 21gProtein: 6gFat: 5gSodium: 4084mgSugar: 8g
Did you make this recipe? Let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and follow @thejamilghar or tag #thejamilghar on Instagram!


  • Chili Powder: American chili powder, made up of dried chilies and herbs, lends a savory profile to this spice blend.
  • Garlic Powder: Garlic powder carries the garlicky flavor from which it gets its name, but unlike fresh chopped garlic, garlic powder is sweet.
  • Oregano: The earthy bitterness of the oregano makes it my favorite spice in the blend; I love the way it stands out among the rest.
  • Smoked Paprika: Provides a smoky heat you’ll crave.
  • Cumin: Add warm, citrusy flavor to the blend with cumin.
  • Salt +Pepper: This winning duo is always highlighting other herbs and spices.
  • Cayenne Pepper: Adds heat that doesn’t overwhelm.


What is blackening?

Blackening spices combine to heighten the flavor of whatever they’re used to coat, but the term “blackening” has less to do with the spice blend itself and everything to do with the cooking process. Blackening is a technique of coating a protein or vegetable in butter, followed by a generous application of the blackened seasoning on all sides. Then, the item cooks over high heat (usually in a cast-iron skillet), resulting in the characteristic blackened appearance.

How do I blacken food?

  1. Lightly coat a protein or vegetable in melted butter using a pastry brush.
  2. Combine the blackening spices in a bowl, and generously cover the ingredient in the seasoning.
  3. Over medium-high heat, warm oil in a cast-iron skillet until it begins to smoke.
  4. Once heated, carefully add your protein and cook on both sides to get a nice blackened crust.

How can I use blackening seasoning?

  • Add it to chicken, beef, or pork chops. 
  • Sprinkle the seasoning over popcorn with butter and salt; I’m serious, try it!
  • Season potatoes and corn-on-the-cob.
  • Toss vegetables in a bag along with butter and blackening seasoning before grilling or roasting them.
  • Coat seafood like shrimp, catfish, salmon, tilapia, or mahi-mahi.
plated blackened mahi
Blackened Mahi-Mahi

How do I store the leftovers?

Once you’ve placed the spice blend in an air-tight container, it will keep in your pantry or cabinet for up to 1 year. And for that reason, I recommend making double.

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