Imagine yourself eating spice-less dishes for days at a stretch! Boring isn’t it? Even the idea of having such a food would be torturous, let alone literally having it. Ever since their introduction, spices have been an integral part of cooking. This is the reason it is said that almost all the tastiest delicacies of the world are the result of wise combinations of various spices. They add a lip smacking taste to any dish and paprika is one of them. Paprika is made out the dried sweet red peppers in a powdered form; these can be bell peppers or chili peppers. Upon heating, it releases flavor and color, which is why it is used to color the colorless recipes too. The most amazing quality of paprika is that it comes in a number of colors, depending upon which pepper has been used to prepare it. Paparika is used to make the dish look beautiful visually and generally serve an important ingredient for garnishing purpose. Apart from that, paprika carries a lot of vitamins and antioxidants with it too. It is sometimes also used as an emulsifier for the smooth dressing of salads. But have you ever thought what if while cooking, you suddenly realize that there is no paprika? Don’t panic for we have listed for you paprika substitutes that would add a luscious flavor and color to your dish, even when you run out this incredible spice.
Substitutes For Paprika
Cayenne pepper is one of the ideal substitutes for paprika. It is basically a red chili powder which is quite hot and used as a flavoring ingredient in most of the dishes. Remember that cayenne pepper is stronger, warmer and hotter than paprika, so it is advisable to add lesser or half quantity than that of paprika. You can also add a little sweetener along with the cayenne pepper to balance the dish.
This is also made out of strong and hot chili peppers. Chili powder can be made out of either red peppers or cayenne peppers. It is taken as a better substitute for paprika than cayenne pepper as it is very flavorful. Also, it is not too hot and spicy like cayenne pepper. Chili powder can be added in the similar amount as paprika and it requires no extra additions.
Cajun spice is prepared after blending ingredients like cayenne, black and white peppers. This spice acts as a seasoning in most of the Cajun recipes. Unlike cayenne pepper, it is not very hot and strong. Cajun spice is one of the best substitutes for paprika.
Any sauce which is made out of chili peppers and ingredients such as vinegar, oil, water/alcohol, can be used as a substitute for paprika. Some sauces are hot sauce, chili sauce, pepper sauce, etc. But do not use these sauces if you want to beautify the dish. They are good only for the similar taste as paprika and do not offer great appearance.
The most common and easily available substitute for paprika is tomato. Tomatoes fulfill all the requirements a person demands in the paprika substitute such as color, texture and great flavor. But remember it does not have the same taste like that of paprika. If you don’t have tomatoes at home, you can also go for tomato sauces or juices. They work wonders especially in liquid recipes.
Black pepper can also be used as a substitute for paprika. It is basically used when the main motive to use paprika is to just add a little spice or hotness to the dish. Black pepper is a better substitute than cayenne pepper.
So don’t worry if you go short of paprika some day, remember you have these substitutes to add similar color, taste and hotness to your dish.