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What are the Spices in South African BBQ?

What are the Spices in South African BBQ?

South African barbecue, known as "braai," is a culinary tradition that goes beyond mere cooking; it's a social event, a cultural practice, and a celebration of flavours. At the heart of this rich tradition are a variety of spices that contribute to the unique and tantalizing taste of South African BBQ.

Braai Salt

Braai salt is the cornerstone of South African BBQ, an essential ingredient that sets the stage for the entire grilling experience. This coarse salt blend, often infused with herbs like rosemary, thyme, and coriander, is generously rubbed onto meats before they hit the flames. The magic happens as the meat cooks, with the braai salt forming a flavourful crust that locks in juices, creating a succulent and aromatic result. This spice is not just a seasoning; it's a ritual that symbolizes the communal spirit of gathering around the braai fire.


Peri-peri, derived from the African Birdseye Chili, is a key player in South African BBQ. This small but mighty chili brings intense heat and a burst of flavour to the grill. Used in marinades, bastes, and sauces, peri-peri adds a fiery kick that elevates grilled meats to a whole new level. The balance of heat and flavour is an art mastered by South African pitmasters, who understand that peri-peri is not just about spiciness but also about enhancing the overall taste experience.

Garlic and Herb Seasoning

A South African BBQ wouldn't be complete without the aromatic embrace of garlic and herbs. Garlic, often used in both fresh and powdered forms, contributes its bold and pungent notes to the marinades and rubs. Mixed with an array of herbs such as thyme, oregano, and rosemary, this combination imparts a fragrant bouquet that transforms grilled meats into a sensory delight.

Boerewors Seasonings

Boerewors, a type of South African sausage, is a staple at any braai. What sets boerewors apart is the unique blend of spices used for seasoning. A mix of coriander, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves imparts a fragrant and savoury profile to the sausage. The careful combination of these spices, along with the quality of meat, results in boerewors that are juicy, flavourful, and emblematic of South African BBQ culture.


The spices used in South African BBQ are not just ingredients; they are storytellers, weaving tales of tradition, community, and the love for good food. Whether it's the foundational braai salt, the fiery kick of peri-peri, the flavourful nuances of boerewors seasoning, or the aromatic allure of garlic and herbs, each spice plays a vital role in creating the unforgettable symphony of tastes that defines South African BBQ. Visit our store to view our wide range of spices!

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