Healthy tips for flavoring food

Healthy Food Flavor-Boosting Strategies

Eating healthy doesn’t mean sacrificing taste. Make delicious flavorful foods a culinary adventure! It can be as simple as adding spices to your favorite dishes and as convenient as using stock instead of water when cooking. Let your flavor imagination run wild and have fun trying these taste-pleasing flavor boosters:

Herbs and spices

  • There are lots of options to please your palate!  
    • Paprika and coriander are mild. 
    • Aromatic herbs (basil, bay leaf, ginger, garlic, mint, onions, shallots, thyme) and spices (cinnamon, clove, cumin, dill, fennel seed, mace, nutmeg) provide bolder flavors. 
    • Hot spices (mustard, black, red, and white pepper) pack a peppery punch.  
  • Not sure where to start? Try:
    • Herb/spice pairing guides to identify complementary flavors. For example, team up carrots with basil, cilantro, dill, mint, nutmeg, or thyme.
    • Salt-free seasoning blends, available in grocery stores and online, to transform ordinary foods into something exotic. For example, turn plain rice, fish, or greens into Caribbean citrus rice, fish, or greens by adding a Caribbean citrus blend.
    • Recipes celebrating global heritage cuisines. For example, African dishes, among today’s top culinary trends, feature vinegars, bay leaf, cinnamon, cilantro, cloves, coriander, dill, ginger, mustard, nutmeg, oregano, paprika, sage, and sesame.

Flavorful liquids

  • Acids like wine, low-sodium tomato juice, citrus (orange, lemon, or lime) and balsamic and flavored vinegars work great in dressings and marinades. 
  • Healthy oils can boost flavor and supply beneficial unsaturated fats. Olive and cold-pressed avocado oils have subtle flavor nuances. Walnut and toasted sesame oils deliver stronger flavors.
  • Replace water with unsalted or lightly salted broth or stock to cook vegetables and whole grains. Cooking grains with bone broth boosts protein in addition to flavor. 

Nutritional yeast

  • This savory vegan flavor enhancer imparts a cheesy, nutty taste and is fortified with B vitamins, including vitamin B12. 
  • Add a sprinkle to cooked whole grains, legumes, pulses, roasted meats, soups, scrambled eggs, sauces, vegetables, salads, and popcorn.


Food that’s both good for you and tasty is achievable. Use healthy seasoning techniques to boost food flavors and enhance your meal enjoyment!