Do Seasonings Have Calories?

When seasoning your food, have you ever stopped to think about how many calories are in a teaspoon?

Do Seasonings Have Calories?

Probably not! Many of us wouldn’t think that herbs and seasonings have calories at all. 

If you’re counting your calories or are just looking to make a few low-calorie choices, it is important to consider all the elements of your dish and how they may carry different amounts of calories.

Understanding the nutritional value of our foods is important, and that includes herbs and spices. 

For recipes that use multiple servings of herbs and spices, it may be necessary to consider the number of calories you’re consuming as a result. 

Here we will review the calorie content of different herbs and seasonings to answer the question, do seasonings have calories? 

Which Spices Have Calories?

Essentially, almost all of the spices you have in your spice rack will have calories in them.

But the vast majority contain so few calories that there isn’t a problem when it comes to making a low-calorie dish.

For example, one teaspoon of chili powder contains 8 calories compared to a teaspoon of salt containing 0 calories. 

Other spices that contain calories include black pepper, allspice, garlic powder, ground ginger, and ground turmeric.

On the whole, the flavor spices add to a meal makes the presence of calories negligible. 

Which Spices Have No Calories?

Seasonings and herbs that do not have any calories include table salt, some seasoning mixes, fresh peppermint, fresh dill weed, and fresh spearmint.

Although salt doesn’t contain any calories, too much of it can lead to high blood pressure, heart disease, and strokes. 

Can Seasonings Make You Gain Weight?

Herbs and spices are already low in calories, therefore adding them to your meals won’t make you gain weight, even when adding a spoonful more than you need.

These seasonings can also add lots of delicious flavor to some of the more bland foods which will encourage you to eat them! 

Some spices can aid you in losing weight.

It’s important to note that as mentioned before, consuming too much sodium or even spices that contain a lot of sodium can have a detrimental effect on your health as well as make you gain weight. 

Can Seasonings Help You Lose Weight?

Certain spices and herbs have been found to increase your metabolism, enhance fat burning and promote feelings of fullness which can all help with losing weight.

Using a wide range of spices is a simple and easy way to help with your weight loss without much effort.  

Cayenne Pepper 

A popular spicy type of chili pepper is Cayenne pepper which is used in a variety of different cuisines.

The compound capsaicin, found in many types of chili pepper, gives the spice its signature heat along with many health benefits. 

Research has found that capsaicin can slightly boost our metabolism, burning more calories throughout the day than usual.

Other benefits include reducing feelings of under which promotes weight loss. 

Finally, further studies have shown that eating a meal containing this compound reduced the levels of ghrelin, a hormone responsible for stimulating appetite. 


Do Seasonings Have Calories?

Turmeric has long been associated with numerous health benefits, which are mostly attributed to curcumin. 

Curcumin is a chemical compound found in this spice that has been shown to have potent anti-inflammatory properties which can improve heart health, and symptoms of arthritis, and prevent some types of cancer.

The compound has also been found to be effective with weight loss. 

Research has shown that a group of overweight people who took curcumin twice a day for one month experienced enhanced fat loss, including decreased belly fat and a total weight loss of up to 5%.

However, the amounts of curcumin used in studies on the effects of the compound are far greater than the amount seen in turmeric. 


Cumin is a common household spice that has been shown to effectively decrease body weight and fat.

Research has shown that adults that had small amounts of cumin each day lost up to twice as much weight and body fat compared to those in a control or placebo group. 

Other than the weight loss benefits, cumin contains antioxidants that can help to prevent diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and high blood pressure.


Ginger is widely used in cooking and folk medicine to cure a wide variety of ailments.

This spice can also be used to help with weight loss, according to evidence that showed supplementing ginger into their diets significantly decreased both body weight and belly fat. 

Animal studies also found similar evidence that ginger can help to decrease weight and body fat by increasing metabolism and fat burning whilst also decreasing the absorption of fat and reducing one’s appetite. 

Black Pepper 

Most of us use black pepper daily in our cooking, it’s inexpensive and adds a lot of flavor to any dish.

Piperine is a compound found in black pepper that gives it that signature scent and also some weight-lowering properties. 

It has been found that supplementing your diet with piperine can help to reduce body weight in test animals even when eating a high-fat diet and also with no changes in food intake.

It is thought that piperine inhibits the formation of fat cells. 

As the research is still focused on animal subjects, it’s not certain how piperine or black pepper would contribute to weight loss in humans. 

Final Thoughts 

Sticking to the recommended amount of herbs and spices such as a simple teaspoon ensures that you’re getting the flavor and health benefits you desire from the seasonings without any adverse effects. 

To answer the question ‘do seasonings have calories?’, the answer is yes most of them do!

Although most of them contain a few calories, this will not impact your dieting plans or calorie count.

Combine a diverse range of herbs and spices with a healthy, balanced diet for the best results.

We hope you found this article interesting and informative, helping you better understand if seasonings have calories. 

Jenna Priestly