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The Scientific World Journal
Volume 2012, Article ID 859892, 5 pages
Research Article

Chemical Composition and Fatty Acid Content of Some Spices and Herbs under Saudi Arabia Conditions

1General Directorate of Research Grants, King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology, P.O. Box 6086, Riyadh 11442, Saudi Arabia
2Department of Food Science and Nutrition, College of Food and Agricultural Sciences, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2460, Riyadh 11451, Saudi Arabia

Received 21 May 2012; Accepted 18 June 2012

Academic Editors: H.-W. Chang, L.-Y. Chuang, and S. Yasmin

Copyright © 2012 Fahad Mohammed Al-Jasass and Mohammed Saud Al-Jasser. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Some Saudi herbs and spices were analyzed. The results indicated that mustard, black cumin, and cress seeds contain high amount of fat 38.45%, 31.95% and 23.19%, respectively, as compared to clove (16.63%), black pepper (5.34%) and fenugreek (4.51%) seeds. Cress, mustard, black cumin and black pepper contain higher protein contents ranging from 26.61 to 25.45%, as compared to fenugreek (12.91%) and clove (6.9%). Crude fiber and ash content ranged from 6.36 to 23.6% and from 3.57 to 7.1%, respectively. All seeds contain high levels of potassium (ranging from 383 to 823 mg/100g), followed by calcium (ranging from 75 to 270 mg/100g), Magnesium (ranged from 42 to 102 mg/100g) and iron (ranged from 20.5 to 65 mg/100g). However, zinc, manganese and copper were found at low levels. The major fatty acids in cress and mustard were linolenic acid (48.43%) and erucic acid (29.81%), respectively. The lenoleic acid was the major fatty acid in black cumin, fenugreek, black pepper and clove oils being 68.07%, 34.85%, 33.03% and 44.73%, respectively. Total unsaturated fatty acids were 83.24, 95.62, 86.46, 92.99, 81.34 and 87.82% for cress, mustard, black cumin, fenugreek, black pepper and clove, respectively. The differences in the results obtained are due to environmental factors, production areas, cultivars used to produce seeds and also due to the different methods used to prepare these local spices.