The 10 Best Paprika Substitutes (Dried Spices Only)

The Best Paprika Substitutes

This list of the Best Paprika Substitutes includes only dried ingredients that you’ll find in a spice rack!

Most lists of paprika alternatives call for cooked bell peppers, a mix of tomato sauce and chili powder, or hot sauce. All of which you can use… but this list of 10 substitutes for paprika is all dried spices.

The Best Paprika Substitutes

We have included a quick list at the top, where you can quickly see what spices will work well to replace paprika in a recipe.

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Then below we will discuss each paprika substitute, and how to use it (for smoked, mild, hot, or sweet paprika).

Be sure to look out for “Special Tips” below to ensure you’re using each alternative for paprika properly (which is best sweet, mild, hot, and smoked paprika, etc.)

The Best Paprika Substitutes

Use this quick list of paprika alternatives… you can click on the link to see a photo and add the ingredient to your shopping cart!

10 Dried Paprika Substitutes:

  1. Cajun Spice Blend
  2. Chili Powder
  3. Cayenne Pepper
  4. Ancho Chile Powder
  5. Aleppo Pepper Powder
  6. Chipotle Chili Powder
  7. Gochugaru Powder
  8. Guajillo Chili Powder
  9. Dried Bell Pepper Blend
  10. Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

Special Tip: You will find more information on each spice below… plus which is best for smoked, mild, hot, and sweet paprika.

1. Cajun Spice Blend

Cajun spice blend has a bit of paprika in it… so if you’re allergic to paprika check out the other substitutes below.

Lighter in color, this spice blend makes a good paprika substitute. However since it’s lighter in color, it won’t “dye” food into a dark red hew as paprika does.

Cajun Spice vs. Paprika:

  • 1:1 – When substituting cajun spice blend for paprika, you’ll use the “one to one” ratio. Equal measurements!
  • Flavor – With a bit of spice, cajun spices are best used in replacing smoked and regular paprika.
  • Ingredients – Organic Paprika, Organic Onion, Organic Garlic, Organic Marjoram, Organic Thyme, Organic Fennel Seed.

Special Tip: Cajun spice has a bit of heat to it, making it best in substituting smoked and regular paprika.

2. Chili Powder

With no paprika in it, this alternative to paprika is great for those allergic to the spice. However, be sure you don’t have a chili powder allergy before you use it.

Chili powder has a mild spice heat to it, and a dark red color similar to paprika. But with a stronger flavor you’ll want to cut the amount of spice in half.

Chili Powder vs. Paprika:

  • 1:2 – When substituting chili powder for paprika, you’ll use 1/2 the amount of chili powder as a replacement. So if the recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of paprika, use 1/2 tablespoon of chili powder.
  • Flavor – This mild spicy blend is great in mild and regular paprika replacements.
  • Ingredients – Chili Peppers, Cumin, Garlic, Oregano, Coriander, Cloves, Allspice.

Special Tip: Chili Powder is spicier than paprika, so be sure to cut the amount you use by half when using as a substitute for paprika.

3. Cayenne Pepper

Should you choose to substitute paprika for this popular spice, you’ll want to cut it by 1/4 or at least half as it’s much spicier than paprika.

However, this also makes it a great spicy paprika substitute! If you’re making a spicy dish, this might be the perfect substitute for paprika spice!

Cayenne vs. Paprika:

  • 1:4 – When substituting cayenne for paprika, you’ll use 1/4 the amount of cayenne as a replacement. So if the recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of paprika, use 1/4 tablespoon of cayenne.
  • Flavor – This hot spice is best used as a substitute for hot paprika.
  • Ingredients – Cayenne Pepper

Special Tip: Cayenne is H-O-T so use it sparingly when using as an alternative for paprika!

4. Ancho Chile Powder

Hands down, the BEST paprika substitute is ancho Chile powder… But we ranked it #4 as most people don’t have it on hand.

If you dislike or are allergic to paprika, pick some of this wonderful spice up. It’s a great substitute for smoked paprika, sweet and regular paprika!

Paprika Substitutes

Ancho Chili vs. Paprika:

  • 1:2 – When substituting ancho Chile powder for paprika, you’ll use 1/2 the amount of ancho powder as a replacement. So if the recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of paprika, use 1/2 tablespoon of ancho chile.
  • Flavor – This substitute works as a sweet paprika substitute as well as smoked and mild paprika.
  • Ingredients – Each is different, we like one that’s just Ancho Chiles, but other blends will include ancho Chile, cumin, oregano, paprika, and garlic.

Special Tip: This makes a great alternative to sweet paprika, smoked, and mild paprikas. Just be sure to use 1/2 of what the recipe calls for when using ancho as a paprika sub!

5. Aleppo Pepper Powder

Another great paprika powder substitute is Aleppo chili powder.

It’s common in Turkish recipes, and you may or may not already have it in your pantry. But this Aleppo pepper substitute works great in place of paprika.

Paprika Substitutes

Aleppo Pepper vs. Paprika:

  • 1:1 – When substituting Aleppo pepper for paprika, you’ll use the “one to one” ratio. Equal measurements!
  • Flavor – This substitute works as a sweet paprika substitute as well as smoked and mild paprika.
  • Ingredients – Aleppo Turkish Chili Pepper, Salt, Oil

Special Tip: This makes a great smoked paprika substitute, plus you use the 1:1 equation! So easy!!

6. Chipotle Chili Powder

This spicy paprika substitute is wonderful in barbecue marinades, homemade spice rubs, and over steaks and chicken.

Though hotter than paprika (that’s ok, just use 1/2) this is a good paprika substitute in spicy dishes, and those that call for smoked paprika.

Paprika Substitutes

Chipotle Chili Pepper vs. Paprika:

  • 1:2 – When substituting chipotle chili powder for paprika, you’ll use 1/2 the amount of chipotle powder as a replacement. So if the recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of paprika, use 1/2 tablespoon of chipotle.
  • Flavor – This substitute works well as a smoked paprika substitute, and for hot paprika dishes.
  • Ingredients – Ground Chipotle (Morita) Chiles

Special Tip: This paprika ground substitute is great for smoked and hot paprika dishes. Just be sure to use only 1/2 of what the recipe calls for.

7. Gochugaru Powder

Popular in Korean dishes, gochugaru powder has a wonderful mild heat. Making it a great alternative to paprika.

You can use this spice substitute in all your paprika sub needs. It’s especially great to substitute sweet paprika.

Paprika Substitutes

Gochugaru Powder vs. Paprika:

  • 1:1 – When substituting gochugaru powder for paprika, you’ll use the “one to one” ratio. Equal measurements!
  • Flavor – This substitute works well as a mild, sweet, smoked paprika substitute, and for hot paprika dishes.
  • Ingredients – A Blend of Dried Red Chile Pepper Flakes.

Special Tip: One of the best dried spiced for paprika subbed is gochugaru powder! You can use it for sweet, mild, and smoked paprika substitutes. Or add a bit more to sub for hot paprika.

8. Guajillo Chile Powder

Another good substitute for paprika, this dried chili powder works well in smoked and spicy paprika recipes.

With mild heat, you can use this red paprika subbed ingredient in most recipes that call for paprika.

Paprika Substitutes

Guajillo Chile Powder vs. Paprika:

  • 1:1 – When substituting guajillo Chile powder for paprika, you’ll use the “one to one” ratio. Equal measurements!
  • Flavor – This spice works well as a smoked paprika substitute.
  • Ingredients – Dried Guajillo Chiles.

Special Tip: This substitute for paprika works great in smoked paprika recipes.

9. Dried Bell Pepper Blend

Very similar to paprika, if you have an allergy to the spice this one in not for you.

Though it won’t dye the dish a deep red color, bell peppers make the best paprika substitute, and this spice blend is great to have on hand.

Dried Bell Pepper Blend vs. Paprika:

  • 1:1 – When substituting dried bell pepper for paprika, you’ll use the “one to one” ratio. Equal measurements!
  • Flavor – This spice works well as a smoked, mild, and sweet paprika substitute.
  • Ingredients – Garlic, Bell Pepper, Red Pepper, Chili Pepper.

Special Tip: Use this to substitute paprika that is sweet, smoked, and mild.

10. Crushed Red Pepper Flakes

Strictly going off flavor, and not texture or color. Red pepper flakes can be used as an alternative to paprika.

This makes a good paprika substitute for those without a large spice cabinet… Most people have a few Crushed Red Pepper packets leftover from their last pizza delivery.

Crushed Red pepper Flakes vs. Paprika:

  • 1:2 – When substituting crushed red pepper flakes for paprika, you’ll use 1/2 the amount of red pepper flakes as a replacement. So if the recipe calls for 1 tablespoon of paprika, use 1/2 tablespoon of crushed red pepper flakes.
  • Flavor – Though this paprika substitute doesn’t have the color or texture of what you’re looking for… it’s great in a pinch as a good flavor substitute for paprika.
  • Ingredients – Red Peppers.

Special Tip: This paprika alternative won’t have the right color or texture… but it works in a pinch, and if you order a lot of pizza, you likely already have some lying around.

Printable Card – The Best Paprika Substitutes

The Best Paprika Substitutes

10 Dried Paprika Substitutes

Lose Weight By Eating
These 10 paprika substitutes are all dried ingredients… to make things easy.
Most lists of dried paprika alternatives call for cooked bell peppers, a mix of tomato sauce and chili powder, and hot sauce. All of which you can use… but this list of 10 paprika substitutes is all dried spices.
Special Tip: You can find cooking ratios, flavor profiles, and ingredients for each ingredient in the sections above.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 0 mins
Course ingredient
Cuisine American
Servings 1 serving
Calories 1 kcal

Instructions
 

  • Read through the names and purposes of paprika substitutes above.
  • Choose the best alternative to paprika for your recipe and dietary needs.
  • Start cooking, baking, grilling, frying.

Nutrition

Serving: 1tbspCalories: 1kcal
Keyword ingredient
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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