Haitian Epis – Seasoning Base Recipe

Thank you for sharing!

Last Updated on January 22, 2021 by Chef Mireille

Haitian Epis – a flavorful combination of herbs and aromatics used as a marinade or seasoning base with just about all Haitian savory foods from hearty meat dishes to vegetable side dishes.

Knowing how to make Epis seasoning – aka the Haitian Sofrito is the key to explore Haitian Recipes for every meal!

Have you ever cooked with Haitian epis?

Table Of Contents

Just about every part of the Caribbean has a flavorful spice paste that is ubiquitous throughout the cuisine. Latin countries have Sofrito, the British Caribbean islands have Green Seasoning and Haiti has Epis.

Check it out!

This recipe is also available as a web story – Haitian Epis Web Story!

As I am someone with mixed Caribbean heritage, I have a unique perspective in that I have made all of them and used all of them and I have to say I am partial to Haitian epis. I try to be traditional and authentic with recipes so when making Habichuela Guisada of course I will only make it with sofrito. However, for every day cooking at home, my go to is always Haitian Epis.

Even my Mom who grew up on islands where Green Seasoning is used, prefers Epis. So I grew up with the flavors of Epis in most of my food and can’t believe it has taken me this long to share the recipe with you. Sometimes the easy base recipes elude me as I try to present appreciation of all cultures on this website.

Epis LR PIN FINAL 2

Haitian Epis only requires a few simple ingredients:

Ingredients

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How to make Haitian Epis

  • Cut the vegetables into smaller pieces.
  • Using a food processor, first grind the cloves, bouillon cubes, garlic, thyme and celery. If you overcrowd the machine with everything at one time, the smaller things will not grind properly.
  • It is not necessary to remove the thyme leaves if they are on the tender branches. Only remove them if they are on the woody stalks.
Making Epis 1 LR
  • Now add the parsley, onions, scallions, shallots and bell pepper.
  • Process until very fine.
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  • Add the vinegar and olive oil, as well as lime juice, if using. Process until thoroughly incorporated.
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Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.

Epis LR PIN FINAL

Variations

Variations will occur from region to region and family to family, but no Haitian house does not have a jar of Haitian Epis Seasoning Base in their refrigerator.

  • Also, Haitian Epis is made a little different every time depending what’s in the fridge. Any variation of garlic, onions, bell pepper or celery can be used.
  • While I like using a variety of onion types for more complex flavor, if I don’t have any shallots and need epis, I will make it without the shallots. You can use any variety and type of onions that happen to be in your pantry. However, since red onion has such a strong flavor and can overpower the other ingredients, I would stay away from red onion.
  • You need some kind of acid to serve as a preservative. Any combination of vinegar, lime juice or lemon juice can be used.
  • Any kind of vinegar can be used, but apple cider vinegar or white vinegar is most common.
  • With all of these possible variations, you might ask what makes the flavor different and unique than the other seasoning bases? Essential are cloves and bouillon cubes. Without these two ingredients, it won’t tastes like epis. These two ingredients are non negotiables.

How long with epis last?

It should be stored in the refrigerator in a glass jar. It will last for up to 3 months.

Epis HERO LR

What is Haitian epis used for?

Just about everything – All of our meat dishes get marinated with Haitian Epis. It’s added into bean based dishes like Sauce Pois.

This flavorful seasoning base can be added to all your foods – rice, beans, vegetables, salad dressing, soup – the possibilities are endless!

Epis LR PIN FINAL 1
jar of seasoning with haitian pottery in the background
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5 from 9 votes
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Haitian Epis – Seasoning Base & Marinade

Haitian Epis- a flavorful combination of herbs & aromatics used as a marinade/ seasoning base with all Haitian savory food from soup to meat.
Prep Time5 mins
Total Time15 mins
Course: Marinade
Cuisine: Caribbean, Haitian
Servings: 16 people
Calories: 48kcal

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Cut the vegetables into smaller pieces.
  • Using a food processor, first grind the cloves, bouillon cubes, garlic, thymey and celery. If you overcrowd the machine with everything at one time, the smaller things will not grind properly.
  • Now add the parsley, onions, scallions, shallots and bell pepper.
  • Process until very fine.
  • Add vinegar, oil and lime juice, if using.
  • Process until smooth.
  • Store in a glass jar in the refrigerator.

Video

Notes

It is not necessary to remove the thyme leaves if they are on the tender branches. Only remove them if they are on the woody stalks.
Yield: 16 oz.

Nutrition

Calories: 48kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 128mg | Potassium: 88mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 458IU | Vitamin C: 15mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg
Did you try this recipe? Leave a comment below.Please follow me on Instagram @chefmireille or tag me #chefmireille with your pics! I’d love to share them!

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jar of seasoning with text
See also  Pastechi Karni - Aruba Style Meat Patties

Thank you for sharing!

About Chef Mireille

CHEF MIREILLE - AUTHOR, RECIPE DEVELOPER AND PHOTOGRAPHER FOR Global Kitchen Travels
***
Chef Mireille is a NYC based freelance chef instructor and food photographer. Due to her very diverse family background, she was able to travel and learn about global cultures and flavors from a young age. Her passion for culture, cooking, history and education had made her an expert on developing traditional globally inspired recipes & delicious fusion cuisine.
Her extensive travel history provides a plethora of background information and Travel Tips!

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Reader Interactions

Comments

    • Chef Mireille

      yes but pikliz is spicy and more a condiment. This is used more in cooking rather than added afterwards. I am sure you will enjoy the flavor it will bring to all of your foods.

  1. Heidy M

    5 stars
    This is my first time trying this flavorful combination of herbs and aromatics seasoning base, and let me tell you, I am addicted! Wow is all I can say about the incredible flavor this adds. I am looking forward to trying more of your beautiful recipes! Happy New year!

  2. Archana

    5 stars
    Wow! what a combo of delicious and fragrant ingredients no wonder Haitian Epis seasoning is delicious. I can’t wait to make some soon it sounds absolute yum. Thanks, Mir!

  3. Mayuri Patel

    5 stars
    Haitian Epis texture and look reminds me of a chutney that I make to go with fritters. However, that’s where it stops as the spices and herbs along with the veggies that go into preparing this condiment are so different. Would definitely love to use it as a salad dressing.

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