Classic Italian Seasoning Recipe

Herb and seasoning blends are certainly convenient for cooking, and, in fact, many recipes call for them specifically. This is all very well and good if you happen to have the appropriate blend on hand, but it's easy enough to DIY them if you prefer to stock your cupboards with solo herbs and spices instead. This particular Italian seasoning recipe contains no secret ingredients or added extras -– in fact, quite the opposite.

As recipe developer Sher Castellano explains, "I wanted to keep this version accessible and easy to make with ingredients you have in your spice drawer," or cupboard, or cabinet, or wherever it is that you do keep your seasonings. While some commercially available blends may contain marjoram, Castellano tells us that "marjoram isn't a very common household spice, so I left it out." As you may also have noticed, there is no garlic. As it turns out, Italians aren't nearly as garlic-happy as is often assumed to be the case. What's more, there's another reason for the garlic omission that we'll get to a bit later. (Spoiler: vampires are not involved.)

Collect the necessary ingredients for classic Italian seasoning

So, no marjoram, and no garlic. Okay, then, what herbs do go into Castellano's Italian seasoning blend? She uses 5 dried herbs in all: basil, oregano, parsley, rosemary, and thyme. She explains, though, that "Italian seasoning is one of those things that is entirely customizable."

Although Castellano then goes on to say "I recommend giving this ratio a try and tweaking from there to make it your own," you can feel free to play around with amounts and ingredients right from the start if you're more of a free-form type for whom recipes are more like suggestions than blueprints. Go ahead and add the marjoram back in if you have any on hand, or even add sage to make a culinary recreation of a certain Simon and Garfunkel hit from days gone by. The two herbs most characteristic of Italian seasoning, however, are the basil and oregano, so you should definitely retain those no matter what other tweaks you make.

Combine the spices to make a blend

Mix all of the dried herbs together. You don't need to use a mortar and pestle, spice grinder, or any other special tool for this, just a bowl or jar and a spoon, fork, chopstick, your hands, or anything else you want to stir with.

At last the time has come to reveal the secret behind the lack of garlic here (besides the fact that it's not typically included in Italian seasoning anyway): Castellano explains that "garlic powders and salts sink to the bottom of the jar," so "omitting granular ingredients is the best way for an even blend each time you use it." If you do want a garlicky seasoning blend, though, you can employ a food processor or blender to crush all of the herbs plus the dried garlic to a fine powder.

Store and use the seasoning blend

Store the spices in a spice jar, or at least a jar with a lid. Basically, anything with an airtight seal will do the trick, and keep your seasoning nice and fresh for quite some time. How long will your Italian seasoning blend last? Taste of Home notes that dried herbs tend to last for about three years. Spice blends, however, may only last for two years, so you should plan to use up your spice blend before that amount of time has elapsed.

Use this Italian seasoning in sauces, in salad dressings, marinades, and dry rubs — you could even sprinkle it on your Thanksgiving turkey! If you really think you won't be able to use this herb blend up too quickly, though, it's easy enough to cut the recipe in half. After all, you can always blend up another batch as needed.

Classic Italian Seasoning Recipe
5 from 23 ratings
This classic Italian seasoning blend combines flavors of basil, oregano, and more — it's perfect in stews, sauces, or marinades.
Prep Time
Cook Time
Italian seasoning in bowl
Total time: 5 minutes
  • 2 tablespoons dried basil
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons dried parsley
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  1. Mix the dried basil, oregano, parsley, rosemary, and thyme together until well-combined.
  2. Store the spice blend in an airtight, lidded jar kept in a cool, dry place.
  3. Use the seasoning blend as desired.
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