Difference Between Cinnamon Powder & Ground Cinnamon

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Cinnamon has been a popular spice for thousands of years across the world.
Cinnamon has been a popular spice for thousands of years across the world.

Throughout history, cinnamon has been a popular spice both for its flavor and its medicinal properties. While consumers and suppliers use the terms "ground cinnamon" and "powdered cinnamon" interchangeably, hundreds of varieties of cinnamon exist. The most common are Ceylon or "true" cinnamon, and Chinese cinnamon, also known as cassia.

  1. Stick Cinnamon

    • Cinnamon comes from the bark of the cinnamon tree. Cinnamon sticks are the whole, unprocessed quills of bark from the tree. Their flavor is milder than ground cinnamon, but the sticks keep longer. Properly stored, cinnamon sticks last for about a year. You can grind the sticks into powder or add them whole into soups, curries, teas or hot chocolate.

    Ground Cinnamon

    • Cinnamon also comes in powdered form. The powder has a stronger flavor, but keeps for only about six months. In general, it's best to store ground cinnamon in a sealed container in a cool, dark place, though refrigerating cinnamon may extend its shelf life. Ground cinnamon makes a popular ingredient in sweet baked goods, but adds savor to dishes such as chili or curry. It is a component of spice blends such as garam masala.

    Ceylon Cinnamon

    • Ceylon cinnamon, also known as "true cinnamon," is a light, neutral brown color. Its flavor is mildly sweet, and more subtle than Chinese cinnamon. Ceylon cinnamon comes only from the inner bark of the cinnamon tree. Connoisseurs tend to regard Ceylon cinnamon more highly than cassia, the common form of cinnamon available in stores. In the United States, Ceylon is generally available only in ethnic markets and specialty food stores.

    Cassia

    • Cassia, also known as Chinese cinnamon, comes from the entire bark of the cinnamon tree, not just the inner part. It is thicker and coarser than Ceylon cinnamon, with a more pungent and sometimes bitter flavor. Chefs and food lovers prefer Ceylon cinnamon over cassia, but cassia is more widely available. Most cinnamon sold in the United States is cassia.

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References

  • Photo Credit cinnamon image by bluefern from Fotolia.com

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