Spices and herbs

What Is Coriander Seed?

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Coriander is a plant that has been in use since time immemorial. The entire plant can be used and is edible, from the roots, stems, leaves, and seeds.

The use of coriander is widespread, it has been used in many staples across cultures, such as Mediterranean, Pakistan, Indian, American, Chinese, North African to name just a few.

Although the whole coriander plant is reported to be safe for consumption, some people find its leaves aromatic and citrus like in taste while some finds the taste repulsive.

Coriander (leaves) is widely used as a herb or spice in most traditional cooking while Thai people are said to use the roots mostly to add a strong flavor to their dishes.

Coriander oil is produced from coriander seeds and is thought to have the ability to kill a wide range of harmful bacteria. Research suggest that it can therefore be used as food additive and alternative antibiotic.

Having said that, let’s find out in detail what coriander seed is and the benefits associated with this spice.

Are Coriander And Cilantro The Same Thing, What’s The Difference?

Coriander is scientifically known as coriandrum sativum. According to research it belongs to a family of Apiaceae, such as carrots, parsley, celery, and the like. The whole plant is edible from the roots up to the leaves and this includes the seeds.

Cilantro is synonymous to coriander leaves in the US while the seeds are referred to as coriander.

The same leaves are known as Chinese parsley and commonly known as coriander in other parts of the world especially in the UK and South Africa.

Cilantro and/or coriander leaves: This herb is one of the widely used herbs in the world. It is used to flavor foods such as salsas, pesto, burritos, guacamole, stews.

It can also be used as an ingredient in smoothies, not to mention that it’s used as a garnish in salads and the like.

This is quite common in most food cultures such as Indian cuisine, Mexican, Mediterranean, Asian, etc.

As aforementioned, coriander leaves taste differently to different people. Some people find the taste aromatic and lemon like while some find it purely revolting. They describe the taste as bitter and soapy pungent.

The differing perceptions in taste is attributed to genetic according to experts. Research indicates that the taste for those with the soapy inclination is not permanent as it is likely to change over time, especially if they crush the herb before eating it. 

Coriander seeds: The seeds are the fruits of coriander plant (refer to the image in the introduction above). They can be used fresh or crushed into powder.

Coriander oil is a product of coriander seeds and among the most used essential oils in the world. It is used as food additive or brining.

Coriander seeds or spice have an earthy lemony tone with warm taste. It’s commonly used as an ingredient in curry paste or powder. Curry paste is commonly used in Thai dishes especially stews and curries.

The powder is popular in Indian cuisine with the blend of other spices. Coriander seeds are commonly known as dhania in India.

The spice blends well with other spices such as cumin, turmeric, cinnamon, cardamom, black pepper. It helps to grind the seeds while they are still fresh as they can easily lose their potency when stored.

Coriander Seeds Are Packed With Antioxidants Which Greatly Benefit Our Health

Research reveals that if we eat coriander seeds more often, this may lower the effects of oxidative stress in diabetic mellitus.

A study was conducted in which diabetic rats were fed coriander seed powder to investigate its antioxidant potential.

It was noted that although the seeds have antioxidant effects, they were also found to be anti-hyperglycemic.

The outcome of the study showed a marked reduced blood sugar and a rise in levels of insulin in diabetic rats.

Are Coriander Seeds Good For Digestion?

Coriander seed is believed to have the potential to stimulate the secretion of digestive juices and due to its high fibre content it contributes to the proper functioning of the liver and stomach.

As a result it alleviates symptoms of irritated digestive system, such as flatulence and  bloating, among others. It is also believed to increase nutrient absorption by the gut.

Do Coriander Seeds Contribute To Skin Health? Let’s Find Out.

Your skin appearance and health matters. Normally the first thing that people see in us is the face. When you feel and look healthy, this somewhat elevates your mood and boosts your confidence. You feel good, isn’t it?

Coriander seed is considered helpful when it comes to skin health due to the antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties along with linoleic acid present in the seed. This is thiught to help in curbing skin inflammation such as eczema, and dry rashes among other skin irritations.

As experts recommend, no one food works as a miracle bullet, diversifying our diet can help us get more nutrients to nourish our bodies and boost overall health.

Oil From Coriander Seeds Can Kill Bacteria Related To Food Poisoning, Research Reveals.

Food safety is everyone’s concern as “bacteria can cause food spoilage which often results in food borne diseases” Implementing certain hygiene measures is critical especially when it comes to food.

This is not only the case for the food industry, it applies to households as well. The corona virus pandemic reinforces the importance of observing hygiene measures.

Having said that, coriander oil has been found to have the ability to kill a wide range of bacteria.

Researchers from University of Beira Interia from Portugal report that coriander oil has demonstrated to be toxic against 12 bacterial strains, including salmonella among others, and can also be used to treat antibiotic-resistant infections. The study was published in the Journal of Medical Microbiology.

A review was also conducted to investigate scientific studies on the antibacterial and anti fungal effects of some spices, coriander spice was among them.

The review confirms that spices can be developed as new and safe antimicrobial agents.

Here’s The Recipe On How To Make Coriander Powder At Home

An Indian name for coriander is Dhania

Author: Dassana Amit

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Cuisine: Indian

Servings: 1 medium-sized bottle

Ingredients: Two cups of coriander seeds (sabut dhania) or you can use any amount you want


  1. Pick the dhania to get rid of stones etc
  2. Spread on the Thali and dry on the sun for 1 to 2 days.
  3. The other method is to roast coriander seeds on a pan till they become fragrant, crisp, and browned
  4. Do not burn them. Cool these.
  5. In a dry grinder make a fine powder of the seeds
  6. Store coriander in a tight container in a dry and cool place.

A Final Thought

As indicated earlier, coriander has been in use for centuries and has been commonly used in many staples across cultures. Not only has coriander been used for cooking but has also been used for medicincinal purposes to alleviate certain illnesses, such as nausea, digestive issues, among others.

Coriander has been found edible and safe for consumption. Different countries call the herb different names.

Researchers believe that the oil extracted from coriander seeds is useful in the food industry as it can be used as an additive to extend the shelf-life of foods.

It is also thought to have the potential to be used as a natural antibiotic, among other reasons.

Thank you for taking the time to visit this site. If you found the article useful do leave your comment, question or your experience with coriander in the comment section below.

Disclaimer: This site’s intent is to provide information and create awareness. The content is not designed to provide medical advice. Thus, if you have any medical condition consult a health care practitioner


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  1. Well, just the fact that it flavor salsa is amazing. I am a huge fan of salsa and I had no idea that this little herb would do something like that I think that’s pretty impressive. God’s works really are miraculous it blows my mind every single day how a small seed can make such an impact.

  2. Hi Maggie,

    This is really an excellent article, which is well-written and covers the essentials of all aspects of coriander seed.
    It is also appropriately referenced by research studies. I did not realize that the entire plant was edible and that it has so many potential medicinal properties. I eat coriander leaves but I will also have to try your recipe.


  3. This is a great article! I have been paying a lot more attention to different foods and spices and how they benefit our health, so this piqued my interest. I use cilantro when I make salsa but didn’t know coriander could be used. I also didn’t know that it lowers the effects of oxidative stress in diabetic mellitus. I will definitely be adding this to my shopping list. Thanks for the info!

  4. Great article, Maggie.
    Love coriander flavor, but now I also love the great benefits that you shared here.
    It is incredible how many things can be improved healthwise by the use of this seed.
    Thank you for putting this info together. I will make the powder recipe, and I am onto sharing this post too!

    1. Hi Pablo

      Thank you for visiting this site and for leaving a comment.

      I’m glad you found the article informative and thanks for sharing it,its highly appreciated.

  5. Great article here on What Is Coriander Seed? I wondered what this herb was all about. A recent recipe I made called for it. Thank you for sharing such valuable info. Have you used it in recipes?

    1. Thanks Alyse for your comment. I use coriander in my normal daily cooking as I do other spices, if that’s what you are asking.

      Thanks for stopping by.

  6. I love coriander and I make a lovely Thai beef salad with it, the leaves that is, it’s the only time my husband will eat it otherwise he can’t stand it.
    Do the seeds taste very different?
    I’m so surprised by all the health benefits too, and the antibacterial effects it has, I must have it more often.

    1. Hi Amy
      Thanks for your comment. Yes the seeds taste different, they have an earthy taste with a warm citrusy tone. I’ve never heard anyone complaining about the seeds, although people prefer different things.

  7. Hey Maggie,

    Really interesting article. I have used coriander quite a bit when cooking with my girlfriend, and I didn’t realise the benefits it gave us. I have shared this article with my girlfriend and I am going to encourage that we use coriander a bit more. Looking forward to the extra benefits.

    Thank you for sharing and keep up the great work on your site.

    All the best,


  8. Hi Maggie,

    I just had an “Aha!” moment thanks to you! So cilantro is the leaf part of the coriander plant, eh?

    Funny, I never put two-and-two together, but the flavors are very similar. It totally makes sense.

    Thank you for putting this article together, and helping us all appreciate what this wonderful herb can do for our health.


  9. Hello Maggie, then is the first time I am learning about this a plant and I feel really excited to have gained this knowledge and that is how I will be coming to your site to see more of this nice article . I really haven’t seen this plant before and I’m really amazed at just benefit which is acting as an antioxidant, it’s quite stunning. 

  10. Wow! How many times do we get to see plants like this corlander. Seriously, it has virtually everything and I appreciate it here. Seriously, what you have written here is really great and I appreciate it a lot. seriously good to see a very useful plant as this here. It can be used multipurposely and that is really a strong thing

    1. Hi Justin
      Yes, this plant is very useful to us, theres no part of it that is not edible.

      Thank you for your comment and for finding the time to read this article.

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