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Black Cardamom

Also Known As : Nepal cardamom, Greater Indian cardamom (English), Cardamome noir, Cardamome du Népal (French), Nepal-Cardamom, Schwarzer Cardamom (German), Bari ilaichi, Big ilaichi, Kali ilaichi; Doda (Rajasthani language) (Hindi), Bari aleh (Kashmiri), Alaichi, Thulo sukumel (Nepali), Bari elaichi, Purbi elaichi (Urdu)
Technical Name : Amomum subulatum


Taste Profile

It has a smoky and tangy flavor

Usage Tips

  1. Black cardamom is a key ingredient in India's famous garam masala spice mixture.
  2. It is used in dishes like curries, stews, and dals (lentil dishes).
  3. It can also be used to make herbal infusions, health tonics, tea and coffee.
  4. Crushed black cardamom can be added to dishes while or after cooking to add a distinct aroma.
  5. Store it in an air tight jar to retain its aroma and freshness.

Common names and forms

  1. Badi Elaichi
  2. Badi Elaichi
  3. Big Cardamom
  4. Big Cardamom Seeds
  5. Brown Cardamoms
  6. Cardamom Amomum
  7. Cardamom Black
  8. Large Cardamom
  9. Large Cardamom Powder
  10. Large Cardamom Seeds
  11. Organic Cardamom Black
  12. Whole Black Cardamom


Black cardamom is a member of the ginger family which is a small herb with strong aromatic fragrances. It has a smoky flavor that comes from the method of drying it on a flame which also lends it a distinct aroma. It is sold both as pods and seeds where the pods carry a higher flavor. There are many distinct species of black cardamom which range in different sizes and have different taste. Black cardamom is known to be native to the Eastern Himalayas. Other main production regions include Eastern Nepal, India (mostly in the tiny union state Sikkim) and Bhutan. Apart from usage in Indian (and Nepali) cuisine, they are not much known but have some regional importance in the regions of Central and Southern China.

Health benefits

  • Black cardamom can stimulate the gastric and intestinal glands to secrete essential juices due to its stimulative properties. This reduces the chances of developing gastric ulcers or other digestive disorders. It is also helpful in curing heartburn and stomach cramps, which are the two most common symptoms of gastrointestinal disorders. (1) 
  • It is beneficial in controlling cardiac rhythm which is the key component in keeping the blood pressure under check. It also reduces the probabilities of blood clots. Thus black cardamom is very beneficial for heart health. (1) 
  • It is very effective for curing several respiratory disorders including asthma, whooping cough, lung congestions, bronchitis, pulmonary tuberculosis, etc. It also works as an expectorant and helps to stay away from cough and cold by alleviating the mucous membrane and normalizing the flow of mucus through the respiratory tract. (1) 
  • The natural diuretic properties of black cardamom keep the urinary tract clean, fresh and hydrated. This helps in maintaining the right health for the urinary tract without much effort and prevents the onset of urinary tract infections. (2) 
  • It also has anti-carcinogenic properties like prevention of growth and elimination of cancerous cells. It raises the levels of antioxidants in the body and keeps it fit and healthy from the inside. It is effective against breast inflammation and ovarian cancer. (2) 

Selection Guide

Always try to buy black cardamom whole rather than in seed form as it begins to lose its potency and aroma when the skin is removed. Look for fragrant, well-formed pods that are plump, firm, and dry as it ensures brimming of seeds.

- Disclaimer
"Information here is provided for discussion and educational purposes only. It is not intended as medical advice or product or ingredient review/rating. The information may not apply to you and before you use or take any action, you should contact the manufacturer, seller, medical, dietary, fitness or other professional. If you utilize any information provided here, you do so at your own risk and you waive any right against Culinary Communications Private Limited, its affiliates, officers, directors, employees or representatives.”