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Difference Between Black Pepper And Uziza

The difference between black pepper and uziza is very pronounced. Uziza is an aromatic spice that is oval in shape. It is most often black when it is dried but greenish to orange when it is fresh. This spice is quite pungent, with a deep aroma. Unlike black pepper which is mild in taste and aroma.

So, if you are looking for the difference between black pepper and uziza seed, and have not found. Then look no further, because I am going to walk you through to a lot of difference between them.

I have come across some articles referring uziza seed to be a black pepper. Similarly, some people tend to mistake black pepper to uziza seed in the food industry. Yes I admit they slightly look alike physically, but in taste and aroma, there is a huge difference between them.

Black Pepper (pipper Nigrum)

difference between black pepper and uziza seed

Firs of all, black pepper (piper nigrum ) is a berry that came from a flowering vine in the family of piperaceae. In addition, this peppercorn is round in shape and grows on the plant in a green form. Furthermore, it is harvested before it turns red (i.e Ripens).

After that, it is allowed to attain a certain degree of fermentation before it completely gets dried and turns black. Most importantly, black pepper originated from India and are very much used in India cuisine. Also, it is globally used for cooking and making seasoning and spice blend.

The taste of black pepper comes from the complexity in the chemical components of the berry and the mild fermentation process it undergoes before it fully gets dried.

Uziza Seed (Piper Guineense)

uziza seed is not black pepper

However, Uziza seed (piper guineense ) is a an aromatic spice that is native to West Africa. This spice is used to cook many native delicacies in West Africa, especially in Nigeria. Most importantly, this spice adds distinct aroma and flavour to food. In addition, it acts as a postpartum treatment.

Also read how to use uziza seed here

Certainly, from my few years experience working with spices and developing difference seasonings. I discovered for a fact that black pepper is way different from uziza seeds.

Imagine swapping in uziza in a recipe that calls for a black pepper. Trust me, the outcome in terms of aroma and taste is going to be a major disappointment.

Also, how will you make a goat meat pepper soup with a black pepper in place of uziza? and still call it goat meat pepper Soup? Unless you are preparing a tasty abomination, please I strongly advice, do not try to use uziza seed and black pepper interchangeably.

Worthy of note, black pepper can be used in a wide range of cuisines, but uziza is limited for use in the food with the uziza signature taste. For example, use uziza to make a dish like this chicken pepper soup.

Also read Nigeria spices and their uses

Difference Between Black pepper And Uziza Seed

Considering taste an aroma Black pepper is mild, woody, and undertone pungency. It generates a chocking effects when it comes in contact with a dusty material like silicon dioxide. Even more, it is slightly hot with a mild biting effect.

In the other hand, uziza also known as Ashanti pepper, Cubeb, Guinea cubed, Benin pepper, Soro wisa and so on is earthy. But, it has high peak of pungency, the taste is highly pronounced and easily recognizable.


We should be comparing white pepper with black pepper instead. Because, if the colour of the recipe of interest is nothing to worry about. Then I will recommend you swap in and out of of the peppercorns.

For instance, I will comfortably swap black pepper with white pepper because there are no much taste difference between them.

While white pepper is mild in terms of heat and lighter in colour, it can fit in many recipes. Doesn’t matter if you want to cook with it or make seasoning blend with it.

However, because of the black specs that may be present in a recipe when black pepper is in use, use white pepper instead. But consider black pepper if heat and black spec is not an issue with whatever recipe you want to make.

Also, see the video on the difference between uziza seed and black pepper

In conclusion, do not use black pepper in place of uziza. However, use white pepper in place of black pepper. For the reason that, they are both from the same plant but white pepper was allowed to get ripen before it was harvested. Unlick the black one that was harvested while it was green.

After it was harvested, they left let it dry, and the colour turns white in the process. Because of that, white pepper is slightly hotter than the black one. I hope, this post is helpful to you. Please, drop any question in the comment section and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

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