Homemade Spice Rack with Garden Herbs


I have had “make spice rack” and “make herb mix” on my to do list for quite a while now.  We still have quart jars filled with dried herbs from last years garden and pulling out a bunch of different huge Mason jars every time I want use them is a pain.  My game plan has always been to make a homemade herb mix out of them to easily use.

So today’s project is a two birds with one stone situation.  Pull out all our herbs and make a mix while re-purposing an old cigar box into a spice rack.  Em and I found this old cigar box with empty glass tubes in an antique shop for $8.  Myself being someone that enjoys the occasional cigar, I thought it would make a cool spice rack to keep on our kitchen shelf.


My current spice draw situation is awful.  Every month or so Norah will open this draw up and rearrange them to look nice, then I start pulling them out and using them and throw them back in and ruin her work.  She see’s what I have done, hollers at me, and does her work over again (Em can relate to this issue).


Then I also have a cupboard full of Mason jars with dried garden herbs and peppers.  The situation can certainly be improved.


I didn’t make a recipe for this herb mix.  I debated weighing everything I put in but that seems like something no one would ever actually do.  Into my little food processor I added dried celery, rosemary, thyme, oregano, basil, sage, parsley, and marjoram.  The ones I like most, I put in the most of (celery, thyme, rosemary, oregano).

spices-4I processed the herbs until it looked like a herb mix you would buy at a store.  The first thing I tried using this herb mix with was in the tomato sauce for a cheese pizza and it was great.


Now was also the time to re-up my cayenne powder and red pepper flakes stash.  I break off the tops of my dried peppers and place the rest of pepper in my little spice grinder and process until they are done.


With that done, I turn to my new spice rack.  I soaked the tubes in warm soapy water for awhile.  Then I rinsed and washed again.  As much as I like cigars I wanted to be assured I would not be tasting them in food.  I let the tubes dry completely and I was ready to load them up with my garden herbs and hot peppers.


Since this will be on the counter I wanted to keep my most used spices in it.  For me that will be my homemade herb mix, red pepper flakes, cayenne powder, and habanero powder.  Then for store bought it will include garlic powder, paprika, cinnamon, and sesame seeds.

It felt good finally getting this project done.  It didn’t get rid of my spice draw problem but at least Norah’s rearranging will last longer now!


Jeff McIntosh

About Jeff McIntosh

Jeff's family lives in his childhood home on a 1/4 acre in town lot. Despite the small space to work with, they have challenged ourselves to produce as much of our own food as possible — and cook it! They document their journey at Blogging with Apples.