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  • Writer's pictureMikey

Stop BBQ Spices from Clumping

Updated: Mar 2, 2023

stop spices from clumping blog cover image with premium craft spices

Got clumping BBQ spices? Actually, maybe we shouldn’t say “clumping” — sometimes they seem to have turned into concrete! Any fine ground powders are always the worst!

But the Team at Smoked Bros is here to help. We have combined some tips on storing and using spices. Let's talk about the science behind spices.

As spices age, they naturally lose the essential oils within them. This loss of oils leads to flavor losses. The three biggest threats to spices are light, humidity and oxygen. Light is particularly damaging to dried leafy herbs and pigmented spices, such as turmeric or saffron. When photosensitive elements in spices are exposed to light, they begin to oxidize and break down. Exposing spices to oxygen, particularly at high temperatures, results in the oxidation of essential oils. Studies found that ground spices are more vulnerable to oxidation because more of the surface is exposed to the elements.

Dry spices naturally absorb moisture from the air. Moisture leads to changes in weight and flavor. When ground spices absorb moisture, they often become lumpy and hard, making them more difficult to incorporate into foods well.

Best practices to prevent breakdown and flavor loss is with humidity control solutions.

How to protect your spices from clumping
  • Store spices in an area that’s cool, dark and dry. The ideal location is in an area away from refrigeration units, steam and cooking elements. In a restaurant, for example, do not keep spices on a shelf above a grill or sink.

  • Minimize light infiltration and slow the oxidation process by storing spices in dark areas.

  • If you're not going to use all the open spices immediately, use glass containers. Spices stored in glass containers lose less essential oils than those stored in plastic containers.

  • Use a dry spoon or scoop to remove spices from a container. This helps prevent moisture intrusion by not sprinkling spices into a hot or steaming pot directly from its storage container.

  • You can also store plastic lidded shaker bottles in a Ziploc bag with a moisture catching pouch (DESICCANT PACKS). Click For Pouches Link

What To Do If Already Clumpy:

If you find yourself with spices that are already clumped, no big deal. This is an easy problem to solve.

How To Remove Clumps:

  • Pour the clumped spices onto a piece of paper towel. Firmly roll and crush any clumps while on the paper towel.

Crushing spices after they have clumped to refresh spices
  • Pour any of the spices that are still clumped into a food processor or blender. You can also use a coffee grinder dedicated to spice grinding. Process the spices on low for 10 to 15 seconds to remove any remaining clumps.

Grinding spices to prevent clumping

  • Pour the spices back into the original bottle and seal the cap tightly.

  • Ensure you follow directions above to fully protect your spices from future clumping.

Offering Veteran Spices and BBQ Rubs, Smoked Bros is a SOF veteran-owned spices & seasoning company serving craft flavors to people who love the All-America past time of BBQ. We develop our kinetic flavor profiles with the same surgical precision as our military missions, defending the greatest country on the planet.

At Smoked Bros, we use the highest quality ingredients that are ethically sourced from around the globe and deliver them to your front door. The quality of our craft seasonings at our price point is unmatched.

Here at Smoked Bros, we are committed to delivering the highest quality ingredients that are ethically sourced from around the globe. With every purchase, we give back to America’s warfighters, first responders, and underserved communities.

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