Coriander powder is made from ground dried coriander seeds, which come from the coriander plant (scientific name: Coriandrum sativum). This popular culinary spice has been used for thousands of years and offers some surprising health benefits.
An Overview of Coriander Powder Nutrition
Coriander powder contains a wide array of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients while being low in calories.
Some of the top nutrients found in a 1 tablespoon (2g) serving of coriander powder include:
- 22.4mg calcium - 2% DV
- 0.8mg iron - 4% DV
- 10.2mg vitamin C - 11% DV
- 0.2g fiber - 1% DV
Coriander powder contains only 5 calories per serving and no sugar or fat. Its three main macronutrients break down as follows:
- 0.4g protein
- 0.9g carbohydrates
- 0.1g fat
Now let's analyze each of the main nutrients and health benefits in more detail.
Key Takeaway: Coriander powder is low in calories but packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Its most impressive nutrients are iron, calcium and vitamin C.
Coriander Powder Offers a Significant Amount of Iron
Iron is an essential mineral that plays a key role in transporting oxygen around the body. It's also vital for energy metabolism, immune function, brain function and muscle growth.
A 1 tablespoon serving of coriander powder provides 0.8mg of iron, meeting 4% of the recommended daily intake.
For a spice, this is a significant amount. It's more iron than you would get from a serving of spinach, making coriander an excellent way to prevent iron deficiency.
Getting enough iron ensures you have adequate oxygen supply to all cells, avoiding symptoms like fatigue, weakness and headaches. Iron also enables efficient energy production and keeps your immune system strong.
Coriander Powder is Abundant in Calcium
Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body. It's essential for healthy bones, teeth, muscles and nerves.
A single tablespoon of coriander powder contains 22.4mg of calcium, meeting 2% of the daily value.
This makes coriander powder an unusually good source of calcium for a spice. It provides more calcium per serving than milk!
Getting your daily calcium ensures optimal bone mineral density. It also helps regulate your heart rhythm, nerve transmission and hormone secretion.
Without adequate calcium, you would be at high risk for fractures and osteoporosis later in life. Coriander powder can help you meet your daily needs for this crucial mineral.
Coriander Powder is High in Vitamin C
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that also plays a role in immune function, collagen production, iron absorption and brain development.
Coriander powder contains 10.2mg of vitamin C per tablespoon, providing 11% of the daily value.
This makes it an excellent source of vitamin C. It provides a similar amount to foods like orange juice, bell peppers and strawberries.
Getting enough vitamin C ensures optimal immune function. It also promotes healthy skin and helps your body absorb iron from plant sources.
Vitamin C deficiency can lead to impaired immunity, bleeding gums and even scurvy. Coriander powder provides a good dose of this critical nutrient.
Coriander Powder Provides Beneficial Fiber
Fiber is a type of carbohydrate that your body cannot digest. Therefore, it passes through the gut undigested and offers many health benefits.
A serving of coriander powder contains 0.2g of fiber. While only 1% of the daily value, this is a good amount for a spice.
Fiber supports digestive health by adding bulk to stools and promoting regular bowel movements. It also helps control blood sugar levels and lowers cholesterol.
Including fiber-rich foods like coriander powder in your diet protects against digestive issues like constipation, hemorrhoids and diverticulitis. It also reduces heart disease risk.
Coriander Powder Contains Antioxidants Like Linalool
In addition to traditional nutrients, coriander powder provides beneficial plant compounds like antioxidants.
One antioxidant in particular - linalool - is thought to be responsible for many of coriander's health benefits.
Linalool has been shown in studies to have anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal and anti-microbial properties. It assists with regulating cholesterol levels and may protect the nervous system.
The antioxidants in coriander powder can help reduce oxidative stress and cellular damage in your body. This protects against chronic diseases and keeps you healthy as you age.
Coriander Powder Has Almost No Calories or Fat
Part of what makes coriander powder so nutritious is that it provides all these vitamins, minerals and antioxidants while being very low in calories and fat.
- A 1 tablespoon serving contains just 5 calories - almost none.
- It also provides 0.1g of fat, meaning it is essentially fat-free.
- There are no trans or saturated fats.
This makes coriander an excellent seasoning option if you are watching your calorie or fat intake.
Replacing salt with coriander powder can provide a big nutritional boost without adding any calories, carbs, fat or sodium.
Coriander Powder Helps Lower Blood Sugar
In addition to its nutritional benefits, coriander powder has also been shown to help regulate blood sugar levels.
Coriander seeds contain coriandin, a compound that has anti-diabetic effects. Coriander powder made from the ground seeds provides the same benefits.
Studies have confirmed consuming coriander lowers blood sugar by increasing insulin secretion and improving insulin sensitivity.
Adding coriander powder to your diet can help stimulate the release of insulin to transport glucose out of the bloodstream and into cells. This prevents high blood sugar.
Managing blood sugar is crucial for anyone with diabetes or metabolic syndrome. But even for healthy individuals, keeping blood sugar stable with coriander powder promotes energy and prevents fatigue.
Coriander Powder May Support Heart Health
Some research indicates coriander powder can support heart health in multiple ways.
First, it helps regulate cholesterol levels. The antioxidants in coriander powder reduce LDL (bad) cholesterol while increasing HDL (good) cholesterol.
Second, it helps lower high blood pressure by acting as a natural diuretic and relaxing blood vessels.
Third, the anti-inflammatory properties of linalool prevent plaque formation in arteries.
By controlling cholesterol, blood pressure and inflammation, coriander powder reduces your overall risk for heart disease, heart attacks and strokes.
Coriander Powder Has Anti-Microbial Properties
Coriander powder contains powerful antioxidants that kill harmful bacteria, yeasts and molds.
Some strains coriander has been shown effective against include:
- E. coli
- Bacillus cereus
- Staph aureus
This can help prevent foodborne illnesses. But coriander powder also has anti-microbial benefits inside the body when consumed.
The antioxidants in coriander powder support your immune system's ability to kill pathogens and prevent infections. This protects against food poisoning, urinary tract infections and viral illnesses.
Coriander Powder Helps Digestion and Reduces Bloating
Coriander powder has traditionally been used to support healthy digestion and relieve bloating.
Its antioxidants help stimulate the production of digestive enzymes and acids. This improves your ability to break down food properly for absorption.
Coriander also contains insoluble fiber that adds bulk to stool and eases its passage through the gut. This reduces constipation and keeps bowel movements regular.
If you often experience indigestion, gas, bloating or abdominal discomfort after meals, adding coriander powder can provide relief by enhancing digestion.
How to Use Coriander Powder
Coriander powder is very versatile in cooking. Here are some ways to incorporate it into meals and drinks:
- Add 1/2 to 1 teaspoon to curries, soups and stir fries
- Mix into hummus, dips and salad dressings
- Sprinkle on roasted vegetables
- Combine with cumin, cinnamon, garam masala
- Use in marinades for meat, poultry or fish
- Add to omelets, scrambled eggs or frittatas
- Blend into smoothies, juices and green drinks
- Mix with lemon, honey and water for tea
- Add to casseroles, pasta dishes and risottos
Start with smaller amounts until you know your tolerance, as some people dislike the taste initially until they acquire it. But adding this powerful spice regularly can provide a great health boost.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does coriander powder have any downsides?
Coriander powder is safe for most people and free of common allergens. However, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- It can cause allergic reactions or stomach upset in some individuals. Start slowly.
- It may interact with certain medications like anti-seizure drugs or sedatives. Consult your doctor.
- Eating large amounts could potentially lead to sun sensitivity or skin rash due to the essential oils.
- Children or pregnant women should not consume large doses since safety has not been established.
As long as you stick to culinary amounts, coriander powder is unlikely to have any adverse effects in healthy adults. But some sensitivity is possible.
What's the difference between coriander powder vs. coriander seeds?
Coriander powder is simply made by grinding dried coriander seeds into a fine powder. The nutritional profile remains the same, but powder is easier to cook with.
However, whole coriander seeds have a longer shelf life than pre-ground powder. For maximum freshness and flavor, it's best to grind seeds as needed.
But both coriander seeds and powder are nutritionally identical. The choice comes down to texture preference and convenience.
Can you substitute cilantro for coriander?
Cilantro and coriander come from the same plant but different parts. Coriander is the dried seed, while cilantro refers to the fresh leaves.
While they have similar flavor profiles, cilantro has a grassier, brighter taste. Coriander is more earthy, nutty and spicy.
Substituting cilantro for coriander would add freshness but significantly alter the flavor of a dish. For best results, use coriander when a recipe calls for it specifically.
Coriander powder offers an impressive nutrient profile while being low in calories and fat.
It provides substantial amounts of iron, calcium and vitamin C. It also contains antioxidants like linalool as well as fiber.
Studies suggest coriander powder helps regulate blood sugar, support heart health, kill pathogens and improve digestion.
Adding this flavorful spice to your cooking is an easy way to boost nutrition and health at the same time. Coriander powder is highly versatile - use in curries, eggs, meats, dips, dressings and more.
With powerful nutrition and health benefits, coriander powder is more than just a garnish. This antioxidant-rich seasoning deserves a spot in every kitchen.