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What is Mace Spice?

Mace Spice


A culinary spice that comes from the bright red outer lace layer of nutmeg used for baking and desserts.

What does Mace Spice taste like?

Mace Spice is more subtle and delicate in flavor and sweetness than nutmeg, often the taste and aroma are regarded as a combination of cinnamon and pepper. 

Mace Spice Uses

Primarily used in baking, especially donuts. Mace Spice is also used in savory applications, mace can become bitter if cooked for a long period of time and should, therefore, be added near the end of cooking for dishes such as chai spice blend, soup, stew, stuffing, sausage, and eggs.

Mace Spice Substitutes 

  • Nutmeg: obtained from the same fruit as nutmeg, mace is more pungent but shares similarities in sweetness, spice and aroma.
  • Cinnamon: sweet and spicy cinnamon has similar applications for sweet and savory dishes. 
  • Allspice: allspice contains many of the flavor profiles of mace and is best suited to baked recipes as a replacement.

Compliments and Pairings 

Best suited to baking, mace pairs well with sweet ingredients including orange, butternut, ginger, oats, cloves, cranberries, plum, peach, pear, apple, allspice, vanilla, cumin, pumpkin, potato, pork, and sugar. 

Expiration and Storage

  • Blades: blades need to be removed before serving a dish, stored in an airtight container away from direct light or moisture, and use within 3-4 years.
  • Ground: generally found pre-ground, store in an airtight container away from direct light or moisture and use within 3-4 years.

Fun Facts

  • Until the 18th century, Indonesia was the only producer in the world of mace spice and nutmeg.
  • 400 pounds of nutmeg are required to produce 1 pound of mace.

Where does it come from?

The spice comes from the dried fruit (outer layer) produced by the nutmeg tree or myristica fragrans. 

Both mace spice and nutmeg are harvested from the same tree, with mace being the outer shell of the seed. 

This seasoning is native to the Banda Islands of Indonesia also known as the Spice Islands.

Check out wikipedia for a more detailed scientific explanation of its origins.

Popular Recipes

  • Donuts
  • Orange and mace cake
  • Ginger and mace rice pudding
  • Oatmeal pancake
  • Spiced apple pie
  • Pumpkin pie
  • Bratwurst
  • Christmas sausage rolls

Chef Max

Michelin trained professional chef with a passion for recipe writing and all things food. I have worked for over five years at top restaurants across the UK and have gained an ability to create any recipe you desire, from comfort food recipes to fine dining recipes. My experience in food writing includes a placement at Delicious Magazine which involved feature writing, recipe testing, article research, and content creation.

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