Last updated: August 23, 2021

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Welcome to our big black sesame test 2021. Here we present all the black sesame seeds we have tested. We have compiled detailed background information and added a summary of customer reviews on the internet.

We would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the best black sesame seeds for you.

You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should be aware of if you want to buy black sesame seeds.




The most important facts

  • Black sesame is considered the original form of sesame, which farmers harvest mainly in the Himalayan region. It comes from one of the oldest oil plants in the world.
  • Black sesame is considered the healthiest of its kind. It has a special nutrient composition that is beneficial for your body, your immune system and your ability to concentrate. The seeds are a valuable source of vegetable protein and can be used as a healing agent.
  • You can buy black sesame seeds roasted, hulled, crushed, sprouted, in the form of oil or as a paste. Black sesame is also suitable as a kitchen ingredient - for sweet and savoury dishes.

The best black sesame: Our picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying black sesame seeds

What is black sesame?

Black sesame (botanical name: Sesamum indicum) is the original form of sesame that comes from Asia. Farmers harvest it mainly in the Himalayan region of Nepal.

It comes from the sesame plant, one of the oldest oil plants. It is an annual plant. Black sesame seeds are small oval-shaped black seeds.

Black sesame seeds are small grains that are rich in valuable nutrients. (Image source: pixabay.com / dabok2014)

Black sesame is considered the healthiest of its kind due to its special nutrient composition. It is one of the foods richest in calcium and a source of vegetable protein.

Sesame seeds can be used in many ways. Black sesame seeds are used in natural medicine and Ayurveda. You can use the seeds for medicinal as well as cosmetic purposes.

It is used in particular by Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). According to this understanding, black sesame strengthens the life energy and finds a harmonious balance between Ying and Yang.

What does black sesame taste like?

Black sesame has a slightly earthy and nutty taste. If you want the flavour to be more intense, you can roast it in a pan without oil.

Black sesame is suitable for both savoury and sweet dishes. You can sprinkle sesame seeds on pastries and sushi, add them to your smoothie or muesli, or make black sesame ice cream.

What are the alternatives to black sesame?

There are many alternatives to black sesame seeds:

Probably the best-known alternative is white sesame. You can tell the difference directly from the colour. Compared to the white seeds, the black seeds are the original form of sesame. Another important difference is that black sesame seeds are more nutritious than white ones.

In addition, the taste of the white sesame is not as strong and aromatic as the black. The Chinese use the white sesame for cooking, while the black sesame is used there as a medicinal herb.

An alternative to black sesame is white sesame, which can be easily distinguished by its colour. (Image source: pixabay.com / Enotovyj)

You can also use flax seeds instead of black sesame seeds. They taste slightly nutty and have a light brown, shiny surface.

Flax seeds are also high in protein, calcium and vitamins and are a good herbal remedy for constipation. The protein content of linseeds is higher than that of black sesame. Likewise, flax seeds have a lower fat content.

Chia seeds are just as suitable as an alternative. Chia seeds have a neutral to nutty taste. However, they have fewer calories than black sesame, which goes hand in hand with the different fat content.

Black sesame seeds have a significantly higher fat content of 49.7 g per 100 g of seeds than chia seeds, which have a fat content of only 31 g per 100 g.

Another distinguishing feature is the amount of carbohydrates. Black sesame seeds have significantly fewer carbohydrates. It has only 11.7 g of carbohydrates per 100 g, while chia seeds contain 42 g of carbohydrates.

Chia seeds can help you lose weight. They swell up in your stomach and you quickly feel full.

Another alternative to black sesame seeds is black cumin. You should not confuse black cumin with either caraway or cumin. You can hardly tell them apart by their appearance, which is why they are often confused.

However, you can clearly tell them apart in terms of taste. Black cumin tastes hot and spicy. You probably know Turkish flatbread, which usually has black cumin in it.

But you can also use pumpkin seeds, which have a nutty flavour. The light green seeds contain important nutrients such as iron, magnesium, selenium and zinc.

They have a positive effect on irritable bladder and prostate due to the vitamins and enzymes they contain. At 19 g per 100 g seeds, pumpkin seeds have a significantly lower fat content than black sesame seeds and are lower in calories.

Poppy seeds are another alternative to black sesame seeds. Poppy seeds have a nutty taste and contain iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium.

They also provide fibre, protein and fat. Because of the morphine content, you should not eat poppy seeds in too large quantities. Poppy seeds are higher in carbohydrates than black sesame seeds.

Many other seeds and kernels can be an alternative to black sesame seeds. Oil made from black sesame seeds is also widely used. (Image source: 123rf.com / teen00000)

Alternatively, you can use amaranth, a plant that is one of the oldest cultivated plants in the world. The origin of the amaranth plant is in South and Central America.

In the meantime, this plant is also cultivated in Germany. The small light brown grains, a pseudo-cereal, have a fine nutty taste. Amaranth is rich in easily digestible nutrients and vital substances.

It has a high fibre and protein content. It also contains iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium and vitamins. The fat content of amaranth is five times lower than that of black sesame, at 10 g fat per 100 g amaranth.

Black sesame seeds can also be replaced by pine nuts, which have a slightly almond-like taste. At 68 g per 100 g, pine nuts have a higher fat content than black sesame seeds.

The high fat content also explains the creamy and soft quality of pine nuts. On the other hand, the kernels have a lower protein content. Besides fat and protein, they contain vitamins A, B1, B2 and niacin.

Among other things, pine nuts contain phosphorus, which helps to strengthen your bones.

Decision: What types of black sesame are there and which is right for you?

There are different types of black sesame. You can buy it roasted, crushed, hulled or sprouted.

In its raw form, black sesame has the highest nutritional value. That's why we always prefer the unroasted black sesame to the roasted. You can also buy ground sesame seeds.

You can make sesame puree, also called tahini, from black sesame seeds. (Photo source: pixaboy.com / Malgorzata Haggu)

The advantage of the crushed seeds is that they stimulate digestion. However, the black sesame in unground form cannot unfold its effect in the human body as well as in ground form.

You can also choose between hulled and unhulled seeds. The unhulled black sesame tastes bitter.

You can also buy germinated black sesame. The advantage of germinated seeds is that the amount of nutrients and vital substances increases. In germinated form, your body can absorb the ingredients of the seeds more easily.

You can also find black sesame seeds in liquid form. You can use the sesame oil as an ingredient in dishes. However, you should not heat the oil, as the heat will impair the effect of the ingredients. The oil is also used in medicine and in Indian Ayurveda.

In addition to sesame oil, there is also sesame puree as an alternative. You can use black sesame paste, also called tahini, as a spread or mix it into all kinds of vegetables, sauces and desserts.

Here you can see all types of black sesame at a glance:

type description
roasted Roasted black sesame seeds are not as healthy as unroasted ones, because in raw form they have the highest nutritional value.
coarsely ground Coarsely ground seeds are better for the digestive tract than unground seeds.
hulled Hulled black sesame seeds do not taste bitter compared to unhulled ones.
germinated Germinated black sesame seeds increase the amount of nutrients and vital substances. In addition, your body absorbs the ingredients of the seeds more easily.
Sesame oil Sesame oil is suitable for refining dishes. It is also an alternative to medicines and is used in Indian Ayurveda.
Sesame puree You can flavour sweet and savoury dishes with puree made from black sesame seeds, also called tahini. You can use it as a dip or add it to sauces.

For best effect, it is best to eat black sesame seeds raw. If you roast black sesame, it loses important ingredients.

Buying criteria: These are the factors you can use to compare and evaluate black sesame seeds

Do you want to buy black sesame seeds? In the following, we will show you which aspects you can use to decide between the many possible black sesame seeds.

The criteria you can use to compare black sesame seeds with each other:

  • Origin
  • Quality

In the following paragraphs, we will explain to you what is important in the individual criteria.

Origin

The origin of black sesame is, as already mentioned, in Asia. Farmers harvest it especially in the Himalayan region.

Warm and moderately humid climatic regions are particularly suitable for the cultivation of black sesame. Meanwhile, the cultivation of black sesame is widespread in tropical and subtropical regions.

Other cultivation areas can be found in Africa, Bolivia, Burma China, Latin America, Uzbekistan and the USA.

Quality

There are of course differences in quality between the various black sesame products. If you value organic quality, you should prefer black sesame from organic cultivation.

We recommend buying organic sesame seeds, despite the higher price compared to classic black sesame seeds, because no pesticides or toxins are used. You can also buy black sesame seeds as a fair trade product.

Then you support the fair working and living conditions of the farmers in the cultivation areas.

Image source: 123rf.com / Anawat Sudchanham

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