10 Best substitute for Sichuan peppercorn

If you’re a fan of Chinese cuisine, you know that Sichuan peppercorns are an essential ingredient in many dishes. It is popular for its unique citrusy flavor with a numbing effect on the tongue.

Whereas what do you do if you’re out of Sichuan peppercorns and need to make a hot pot or dumpling sauce?

Don’t worry – there is plenty of easy substitutes for Sichuan peppercorn you can use.  

Substitute for Sichuan Peppercorns

1. Black Pepper Common Sichuan Pepper Alternative

Though, Black peppers are not similar to Sichuan pepper till it is a common substitute. The fruit of the black pepper plant is called peppercorn. Peppercorns produce a strong, pungent flavor when dried, ground, and crushed. 

Black pepper is small and round with a dark brown or black color. It is frequently used as a seasoning for meats, fish, and vegetables. It can also be used to make curry powder and other spice blends.

Black pepper and Chinese pepper are both common spices used in cooking. They have some similarities, such as being members of the Piperaceae family and containing piperine, a compound that gives them their characteristic spicy flavor. 

black pepper is a great alternative for sichuan peppercorn

2. Chili pepper spicy substitute For Chinese pepper

Chili peppers are one of the most widespread spices available widely in the world. They are used in cuisine from almost every culture, and their popularity seems ever-growing. 

Chili peppers add a unique flavor to dishes and can be used in sweet and savory recipes. For a little spice to your food, you may consider substituting chili pepper for Sichuan peppercorn. 

When substituting chili pepper for Sichuan peppercorn, keeping the ratio in mind is important. Sichuan peppercorn is typically used in much smaller quantities than chili pepper. 

3. Tasmanian pepper 

If you can’t find Sichuan peppercorn, don’t worry – Tasmanian pepper makes a great substitute. Use smaller than called for in the recipe, as Tasmanian pepper is more pungent than Sichuan peppercorn.

It is native to the island of Tasmania, off the coast of Australia. Tasmanian pepper is also grown in other parts of the world, such as New Zealand, South Africa, and the United States.

Tasmanian pepper has a sharp, peppery flavor with a hint of citrus. It’s often used in spicy dishes like curry or chili, as well as in many Asian dishes.

When substituting Tasmanian pepper for Sichuan peppercorn, use about half amount of Tasmanian pepper as you would Sichuan peppercorn.

4. sanshō – Japanese pepper Most Suitable Sichuan Pepper Substitute

Sansho is a type of Japanese pepper similar to Szechwan pepper. It is the fruit of the prickly ash tree and has a sharp, citrus-like flavor.

Sansho is also known as Chopi in Korea. It is widely used as a spice in many Japanese and Korean dishes and is also used to make sansho pepper oil.

The fruit is green when fresh but dries to reddish-brown color after being dried. The dried husks are then crushed into a powder.

The taste of sansho is quite complex. It is simultaneously sharp and citric, with a slightly numbing effect on the tongue. The smell is also very strong and has been described as “peppery” and “lemony”.

Sansho can be used in many different ways in cooking. It is often used to flavor fish and vegetables. You can use it for marinades or as a seasoning for rice and noodles

5. Tellicherry peppercorns

Tellicherry peppercorns are a variety of black pepper that is grown in the Malabar region of India. The name “Tellicherry” comes from the city of Thalassery, which is located in the state of Kerala.

You can easily substitute Tellicherry Peppercorns for Chinese pepper in a 1:1 ratio.

These peppercorns are larger than other types of black pepper, and they have a strong, pungent flavor with hints of citrus. The smell of Tellicherry peppercorns is also very potent, and the appearance is that of small, dark berries.

Tellicherry peppercorns can be used in many different ways in cooking. They can be used to add flavor to soups, stews, and sauces

Read More- Best Ancho chile Substitutes

6. Try Grains of Paradise Instead of mala Pepper

In Chinese cooking, Sichuan peppercorn is a common ingredient that imparts a unique numbing spiciness to dishes. Here you can use grains of paradise to replace Sichuan Pepper.

Grains of paradise, also popular as alligator pepper, is a species of Aframomum native to tropical West Africa. The grains are actually the seeds of the plant and have a pungent, peppery flavor similar to Chinese pepper and will give your dish the same zing. 

Just not use too much, as Grains of Paradise can be very potent. Start with a little amount and taste as you go until you get the desired flavor.

There are numerous ways to use grains of paradise in cooking. You can add to soups, stews, and curries for a flavor boost, also commonly used in spice rubs for meats or vegetables.

7. Lemon peppery seasoning

If you want to make a dish that is truly authentic Sichuanese, then you will need to use Sichuan peppercorn. However, if you are looking for a substitute that will give your dish a similar flavor, then you can try using lemon peppery seasoning. 

This seasoning is made with dried lemon peel, pepper, and salt. It will give your dish a sour, spicy, and salty flavor reminiscent of Sichuan peppercorn.

Lemon pepper is also a great way to add some extra flavor to plain dishes such as rice or pasta. Simply spread some over the top of your dish before serving, and enjoy the delicious flavor it adds.

8. Sichuan peppercorn oil- Suitable Substitution for Szechuan pepper in Hot Pot

If you want to make a more authentic hotpot, substitute Sichuan peppercorn oil for the dried Sichuan peppercorn. This will give the dish a better complex flavor and aroma. If you can’t find Sichuan peppercorn oil, you can use any other type of chili oil.

9. I use Sichuan peppercorn salt sometimes for Sichuan Peppercorn

Sichuan peppercorn salt is a blend of Sichuan peppercorns and salt. It has a strong, pungent flavor with a slightly numbing effect. The peppercorns are used to add flavor to dishes, while the salt helps to balance out the spice. 

This seasoning is commonly used in Chinese cooking but can also be used in other cuisines.

The taste of Sichuan peppercorn salt is quite unique. The saltiness of the seasoning really comes through, but it is offset by the slight sweetness of the peppercorns. 

The overall effect is a bit spicy but not too hot. The flavor is also very complex, with hints of citrus and floral notes.

10. Shichimi

Shichimi, also known as the Japanese seven spice, is a popular seasoning in Japanese cuisine. 

It is prepared from a blend of seven different spices, including chili peppers, ground sanshō, black and white sesame seeds, ground ginger, nori seaweed, roasted orange peel, poppy seed, etc. 

However, the exact ingredients and proportions can vary depending on the region or even the family.

Shichimi can be used to add flavor to any dish, but it is particularly common in soups and noodle dishes. It is also often used as a table condiment, allowing diners to add extra spice to their food according to their taste.

Shichimi is a popular substitute for sichuan peppercorn

FAQs on Sichuan peppercorn substitute

Q1. How do you make Sichuan peppercorns?

To make Sichuan peppercorns, first, toast the peppercorns in a dry pan over medium heat until they are fragrant. Then grind the peppercorns in a coffee grinder or mortar and pestle. To use, add the ground peppercorns to your recipe as desired.

Q2. What is a Sichuan peppercorn?

A Sichuan peppercorn is a dried, red-brown berry that comes from the prickly ash tree. The tree is aboriginal to China and has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine. The berries have a sharp, pungent flavor that can be used to add spice to food. 

Q3. What do Sichuan peppercorns taste like?

Sichuan peppercorns have a unique flavor that is often described as numbing, tingling, and slightly citrusy. Some people approximate the flavor to that of a grapefruit. 

While the exact taste of Sichuan peppercorns may vary depending on the individual, they are generally considered to be a key ingredient in many authentic Chinese dishes.

Q4. What is similar to Szechuan pepper?

While Szechuan pepper is not related to black pepper or chili peppers, it shares a similar flavor profile to both. 

The unique taste of Szechuan pepper comes from its high content of hydroxy-alpha sanshool, which gives it a sharp, citrusy flavor with hints of floral and anise notes. 

Szechuan Pepper is similar to sanshō – Japanese pepper, Grains of paradise, Sichuan peppercorn salt, and oil.

Q5. Is Sichuan pepper the same as peppercorn?

Sichuan pepper is not the same as a peppercorn. Sichuan pepper is a type of dried fruit that is often used in Chinese cuisine, while peppercorn is a type of spice made from the dried berries of the Piper nigrum plant. 

Both ingredients can add a pungent flavor to food, but they are used in different ways and have different taste profiles. 

Sichuan pepper has a unique citrusy flavor with floral notes, while peppercorn is spicy and sharp. When replacing one for the other, it is important to keep this difference in mind.

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