poultry seasoning substitute

Top 6 Substitutes For Poultry Seasoning To Use Any Time

Whenever you want to cook a good roasted chicken or chicken stuffing, there is nothing better than a good poultry seasoning. It may not always be readily available though. If this is the case, you certainly want to find other options, as your dish may suffer otherwise.

What Is Poultry Seasoning?

Poultry seasoning is a commercial mix of herbs and spices to be used when cooking poultry, but also pork and lamb. This seasoning contains thyme, sage, rosemary, black pepper, and marjoram. Some brands may also contain celery seeds, celery salt, and cloves.

This ingredient is common when making dishes like stuffing, roasted chicken, soup, and gravy. Unlike what some think, poultry seasoning is completely vegetarian and vegan, so it can be used safely in meatless diets.

You can find this ingredient in any grocery store, usually next to the spices or near the meat section. 

Why Replace Poultry Seasoning, Anyway?

It may seem like common food, but there are some reasons why many would need to replace this seasoning:

  • Availability: Since it is not necessarily an everyday ingredient, some may not be able to find this seasoning in stores. 
  • Flavor: Because it is a pre-mixed seasoning, it can have some flavors that not everyone likes, like strong licorice or floral aromas.
  • Allergy: Some of the herbs in this seasoning may produce an allergic reaction in some individuals, that while not common, these can occur in certain cases.

What Can I Replace Poultry Seasoning With?

If you need another flavor or want to see what options are out there, then these substitutes for poultry seasoning are just what you were looking for:

Best For Stuffing, Fried Chicken, and Fried Turkey

#1. Dry Sage

If you can find dry rubbed sage, this is the best replacement for poultry seasoning. You can use about ½ teaspoon of dry sage in place of one teaspoon of poultry seasoning. You should smell and taste this herb before you use it, especially because it may have a stronger flavor for some. 

To create a more similar flavor to poultry seasoning, consider adding a bit of dry rosemary and dry thyme as well. You may have a hard time finding rubbed sage, so you can try using ground sage instead. Use dry sage when you prepare fried chicken, fried turkey, and stuffing.

See More: Sage Substitutes

#2. Dry Thyme

Another good herb to use in place of poultry seasoning is thyme, particularly the dry kind. This spice is always part of stuffing, chicken, turkey, and soups. You can use ⅓ teaspoon thyme to substitute one teaspoon of poultry seasoning.

Keep in mind that dry thyme has a slightly aromatic and minty flavor, so it may change the final aroma of your meal as well. This choice is great when you want to make dishes with poultry but also cream sauces.

See More: Thyme Alternatives

#3. Dry Marjoram

Although not everyone is familiar with marjoram, this herb is often part of poultry seasoning, so it makes sense to use it in its place.

Dry marjoram is a little citrusy, floral, and slightly woodsy, but it also has a sweet aroma. For every one teaspoon of poultry seasoning, use ⅓ teaspoon of dry marjoram. 

Marjoram is a great choice when you make chicken, turkey, stuffing, tomato sauce, pizza, and stews. While fresh marjoram should be added at the end of cooking, when it is dry, it is best to add it early in the cooking process.

See More: Marjoram Replacements

Best For Marinades, Meatloaf, and Potatoes

#4. Dry Rosemary

Dry rosemary is a great choice for any dish that contains poultry, so using it, in this case, is a good idea. Use ½ teaspoon of dry rosemary for every one teaspoon of poultry seasoning that your recipe calls for.

Rosemary tastes a little woodsy, citrusy, and floral, but the aroma is slightly floral and sweet.

This choice is great in marinades, potatoes, meatloaf, roasted chicken, fish, and more. You can always mix dry rosemary with other herbs like sage, thyme, and oregano, to create a stronger flavor.

See More: Best Substitutes for Rosemary

#5. Italian Seasoning

In a pinch, Italian seasoning can be a quick and easy substitute for poultry seasoning. This mix of herbs contains basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, garlic powder, sage, and coriander. You can find this seasoning anywhere these days, as it is common in Italian dishes.

You can use the same amount of Italian seasoning as you would poultry seasoning, but keep in mind that this one is a bit earthy and citrusy. This seasoning is perfect for marinades, meatloaf, potatoes, pasta, chicken, and turkey.

#6. Dry Oregano

Oregano is one of those herbs that you either love or hate, but in its dry form, it is good when you need to replace poultry seasoning.

Dry oregano tastes a bit pungent, aromatic, and earthy, but it also has minty notes. To substitute for one teaspoon of poultry seasoning, you can use ⅓ teaspoon of dry oregano.

Be careful with how much oregano you add, as it can be a bit overpowering in your dish. Sometimes, using oregano can also dry up your dish, so be sure to measure how much you add.

If you want a closer flavor to poultry seasoning, mix dry thyme and dry oregano and use this in your cooking.

See More: Best Alternatives to Oregano


Can I use chicken bouillon instead of poultry seasoning?

You can use chicken bouillon to add flavor and salt to your meal, but the flavors are not similar to poultry seasoning at all. If you want a closer flavor, you should add one of the items in this list, or mix some herbs with your bouillon.

Does poultry seasoning have chicken in it?

No, poultry seasoning is composed of only herbs and sometimes salt, but no chicken or meat is used in making this spice mix. This means that it is safe to use if you follow a vegetarian or vegan diet. The name comes because it was invented to season poultry, but it can be used in as many dishes as you want.

Where can I buy poultry seasoning?

You can usually find poultry seasoning in any grocery store by the spice rack or dry herbs. If you can’t find it there, try online, or make it at home. You can mix thyme, sage, rosemary, black pepper, and marjoram, and use it in your recipes.


When you want to make a tasty Thanksgiving turkey or some roasted potatoes, poultry seasoning comes in handy. However, not everyone has this seasoning and may not like all the flavors in it. If this is the case, use any of these six substitutes for delicious flavors.

poultry seasoning alternative

*image by depositphotos.com/sokor

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