The 10 Best Substitutes for Herbes de Provence

Close up view of dried herbes de provence.

There will be times you’ll want to make something new and realize — last minute, of course — that you don’t have or can’t find the necessary Herbes de Provence. Fear not, foodie. You can still prepare that French-inspired recipe using one of the 10 substitutes for Herbes de Provence introduced below. 

If you’re a fan of French cooking, you’ve heard of Herbes de Provence. This fragrant blend of herbs is commonly used in Mediterranean cuisine. Originating from the Provence region of France, this herb blend takes on the job of seasoning poultry, fish, vegetables, and even bread.

What is Herbes de Provence?

Close up view of dried herbes de provence.
Source: Envato.
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Before we dive into those Herbes de Provence stand-ins, let’s take a closer look at what Herbes de Provence is and why it’s unique. Herbes de Provence is an herb blend that typically includes dried rosemary, thyme, oregano, marjoram, and savory. Some variations also include lavender, fennel, or bay leaf. The dried herbs are mixed, resulting in a fragrant and savory seasoning blend.

Herbes de Provence is a staple in French cuisine and the key ingredient in many French-inspired dishes, such as Blog Chef’s own French Onion Chicken.

Substitutes for Herbes de Provence: The spice blends

Ready to explore ingredients you can use in place of Herbs de Provence? Let’s dive in.

Unless noted otherwise, use slightly less of the substitute than your recipe requires, then add more to taste. Herbs de Provence is very flavorful, so you may end up using more of the substitute — but it’s always better to start conservatively.

1. Italian seasoning

If you’re looking for a quick and easy Herbes de Provence substitute, try Italian seasoning. You probably have it on hand, and it includes some of the same herbs you’ll find in Herbes de Provence — namely, basil, oregano, thyme, and rosemary.

Italian seasoning is less floral and less fragrant than Herbs de Provence, but it’s still a good stand-in for a variety of dishes.

2. Rosemary and thyme

If you have rosemary and thyme on hand, you can create a homemade Herbes de Provence substitute. Since rosemary and thyme commonly appear in Herbs de Provence blends, they make a great starting point.

Simply mix equal parts dried rosemary and thyme.

3. Fines herbes

Fines herbes is a different French herb blend made of parsley, chervil, tarragon, and chives. While it doesn’t include the same ingredients as Herbes de Provence, it does have a similar light and fresh flavor. You’ll find it works well with eggs, vegetables, and poultry.

4. Poultry seasoning

Poultry seasoning is a readily available blend that’s tailored for chicken and turkey. It usually includes some of the herbs as Herbes de Provence, such as sage, thyme, and marjoram.

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Poultry seasoning can be salty, so use it sparingly.  

5. Za’atar

Za’atar is a Middle Eastern spice blend made of thyme, oregano, marjoram, sesame seeds, and sumac. While it doesn’t taste the same as Herbes de Provence, it has a nice savory, fragrant quality that works well in Mediterranean-inspired dishes.

Za’atar is also a good choice if you prefer a salt-free seasoning.

6. Garam masala

Source: Envato.

Garam masala is a traditional Indian spice blend that includes a variety of warm and fragrant spices such as cumin, coriander, cinnamon, and cardamom. The blend is commonly used in curries and stews. That probably sounds like an unlikely alternative to Herbes de Provence–but it can work in savory dishes that call for complex spices. 

Substitutes for Herbes de Provence: Individual spices  

7. Savory

Savory is a versatile herb that’s also a main ingredient in Herbes de Provence. Savory’s slightly bitter and peppery flavor works well in stews, soups, and casseroles. Savory also enhances the flavor of meat dishes.  

8. Thyme

Thyme is another component of Herbes de Provence. It has a slightly sweet and earthy flavor. Like savory, thyme adds depth to meat dishes. 

9. Rosemary

Source: Envato.

Rosemary is a pungent herb with a woody aroma and a slightly bitter flavor. It’s often used in Mediterranean cuisine. Rosemary pairs well with meat dishes and is an excellent substitute for Herbes de Provence. The strong flavor can easily overpower other components of your dish, so start with half of the recommended amount.

10. Marjoram

Marjoram, part of the mint family, is another staple of Mediterranean cuisine. It has a slightly sweet and citrusy flavor, which pairs well with meats, vegetables, and soups. The flavor is milder than other herbs found in Herbes de Provence, which makes it an excellent choice if you want to tone down the herbal flavors. 

Or, make your own 

You can also make Herbes de Provence. Here are two options: 

  1. A simpler Herbes de Provence blend by The Spruce Eats. The recipe contains oregano, thyme, savory, basil, sage, rosemary, and, optionally, dried, crushed lavendar. 
  2. A more complex Herbes de Provence blend by Mariposa on AllRecipes. This one relies on fennel, marjoram, dried lavender flowers, rosemary, savory, thyme, basil, marjoram, Italian parsely, oregano, tarragon, and bay powder. 

So there you have it: 10 substitutes for Herbes de Provence, plus two recipes to make it yourself. Enjoy!