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Flavorful Meat Rub with a Curry Kick

Updated on September 30, 2015

Prep Time

Prep time: 5 min
Ready in: 5 min
Yields: 6 tsp of Rub Mixture

We all love flavor, don't we? And there's nothing that helps a good BBQ or roast along like a nice spice/herb rub on an otherwise plain piece of meat.


  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp ground paprika
  • 1 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp dry crushed thyme

Garlic & Salt, not Garlic Salt

I'm often asked why I use salt and garlic powder separately rather than the premixed garlic salt mixture available at almost any grocery store. The answer is quite simple, really. By using the individual components separately, I'm able to control their proportions more precisely. Can you use the mix? Well, yes... but you'll likely get much more salt than garlic that way.


  1. Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.
  2. Mix ingredients until they're evenly distributed - mixture should be brownish orange in color.
  3. Use as necessary, store excess in airtight container or a fresh resealable (Ziploc) bag.


  • Cumin may be substituted in place of curry powder for a more subtle taste.
  • Smoked paprika (rather than regular) adds an excellent warm touch to meats.

Nutrition Facts
Serving size: 1/4 tsp
Calories 0
Calories from Fat0
% Daily Value *
Sodium 98 mg4%
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Mortar & Pestle Principle

Take Time for Thyme

I've noticed that store-bought ground thyme (much like many other store-bought ground herbs) is not particularly well processed. In other words, there are larger chunks of thyme mixed in with the smaller ground powder. It just doesn't distribute very well this way.

To remedy this issue, I like to crush my herbs a second time before using them. To do this, place a little thyme in your palm (roughly half a teaspoon or so) and slightly cup your hand. Then, with one finger of your other hand, press the thyme into your palm, rotating your finger slightly. This creates a grinding motion that, when repeated several times, will turn your dried herbs into a relatively fine powder.


This mixture works relatively well for dark meat (beef, lamb, chicken legs). You're certainly welcome to try it on white meat also, but I suggest reducing the amount of paprika by half and compensating for the shortage by adding more ginger.

When applying to meat, do your best to rub it into the flesh (get it under chicken skin, for example). Let it "marinade" in the refrigerator for around 30 to 60 minutes before cooking.

Consider serving the meat with roasted bell peppers, the tastes compliment each other well. Also consider serving with spicy vegetable spread as a "garnish" of sorts if you're going to barbecue. The smoke infused vegetables add an impressive element of warmth to the spice mix for an extra flare in your meal.

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