What Does Anise Taste Like? (Give Your Taste Buds An Experience!)

Have you been wondering what does anise taste like? It’s a valid question to ask, which a lot of people might not know the answer to. So, let's find out. Anise, a key ingredient in numerous dishes across the globe, is a one of a kind herb which enhances the flavor of any meal you add it to.

Read on to know more about this herb, how it’ll affect your taste buds, and how you can incorporate it into the food you eat.


What is Anise?


Before we move on to the taste of this herb, let’s first understand what this ingredient is. Anise, which is more commonly known as aniseed is a flowering plant which is native to Southwest Asia and the eastern region of the Mediterranean.

Anise has been used for quite some time in western cuisines to flavor candies, drinks, and dishes. The word ‘anise’ itself refers to not only the herb but also its flavor.

What Does Anise Taste Like?


A majority of people describe the flavor of this herb as a combination of how a few spices taste. The said taste has been described as tasting spices like fennel and star anise as well as licorice.

Perhaps, the most flavorful component of anise is its essential oil which is known as anethole. Anethole, apart from being present in this plant, is also present in star anise which is used widely in East Asian, South Asian, and Southeast Asian cuisines. This is why the taste of the two is quite similar.

Anise in Culinary

Anise in culinary

Anise has been used in culinary since the beginning of time. Ancient Romans used to serve mustaceoe, which are spiced cakes that have aniseed in them after every meal as digestives.

Today, these anise seeds are used for the preparation of tisanes and teas in both the whole form as well as ground form. They can be used alone for teas and tisanes, or they can be mixed with other various aromatic herbs.

Moreover, anise seeds are utilized in a wide variety of ethnic and regional confectioneries. These seeds are part of almost all cuisines. They are used to make black jelly beans all over the world.

Anise in Different Cuisines

Anise in Different Cuisines

In Britain, anise is quite famous for making aniseed balls while in Australia, they are used to make humbugs. Similarly, in New Zealand, the seeds are used to make aniseed wheels, and in Italy, they are used to make pizzelle. In Germany, the seeds are used to make Springerle and the famous Pfeffernusse.

In Austria, anise is used for Anisbogen and in Netherlands for muisjes. Other dishes which include anise are Peruvian picarones and New Mexican bizcochitos. In fact, it is an essential component in Mexican champurrado; which resembles hot chocolate and atole de anis. In India, people consume anise as a digestive after their meals.

Anise in Liquor

Anise in liquor

The exotic smelling plant is used for the flavoring of liquors all over the globe. In the Middle East, the plant is used to flavor Arak, and in Colombia, it is used in its famous aguardiente. In France, anise is used for pastis, absinthe, and anisette. It is also used in Macedonian and Bulgarian Mastika, and Greek ouzo.

Similarly, anise is used for the flavoring of Germany’s famous Jagermeister, Italian Sambuca, Appenzeller Alpenbitter of Switzerland, Brokmopke of the Netherlands, Spanish, Peruvian, and Portuguese Herbs de Majorca.

It’s widely believed that anise is one of the numerous secret components of Chartreuse, a famous French liquor. Moreover, Anise is also added in a few root beers like the Virgil, which is popular in America.

Medicinal Uses of Anise

Medicinal uses of anise

It not only tastes good but also possesses medicinal properties. Traditional Europeans made use of anise as herbal medicine because of the carminative effect it possesses.

Furthermore, anise is thought to be beneficial for the treatment of colic and menstrual cramps. Drugs that have anise as its base are used for upset stomachs as well as to treat intestinal gas.

Arise is also utilized for the treatment of scabies, psoriasis, and lice. Here’s a video that provides further information about anise, its health benefits, and flavor.

The Use of Anise Extract

Just like anise seed, its extract also has a licorice-like taste which is why it is used in numerous baking products to add the flavor of licorice them. It's also used for cooking and making meals smell delicious. Due to its fragrance, anise is also used in perfumes and soaps.

So, there you have it. Keeping it short, anise tastes like fennel and other spices such as star anise especially due to anethole being a major component being shared by them all.

Feel free to experiment with food and find out the kind of flavors you like that combine well with anise. If you have any inquiries regarding anise, feel free to drop a comment below!

About the Author Laura Bennett

Hello, I’m Laura Bennett. I love nature especially when it comes to flowers and different kinds of plants. I started a very small garden behind my house and I named it Humid Garden. So, I created this blog to provide aspiring and inspiring thoughts about gardening for gardeners and anyone who has the intention of keeping a garden.

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