Marjoram vs Oregano Essential Oil

We know about the properties of natural herbs. Herbal essential oils overlap with each other. Some even share nearly all the properties. The common compounds between some herbs are too much to differentiate them. For example, Marjoram and Oregano are two such natural plants that share the same compounds. The shared properties cause all the sameness of features, aroma, and effect. Therefore, it can often pose a dilemma about which one to go for. So, oftentimes there’s a conflict between Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil.

This article may come to your rescue as it not only illustrates the benefits and uses of these two herbs. Instead, it singles out the differences between the two. Now let's examine the features of these fragrant herbs - the most favorite in Mediterranean dishes.

Marjoram Essential Oil: Uses and Benefits

Marjoram is a natural plant that is one to two feet tall, featuring fragrant leaves. The marjoram leaves are ovate and of gray-green color. It bears tiny and tubular flowers bloomed in white and pale pink clusters. Marjoram essential oil is extracted from the leaves and concentrated as usual. Let's look at what uses and benefits this special oil has been offering us for a long time. To clear out the confusion between Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil, it must be discussed one by one. So we can cross-check the similarities and differences. Here you go.

Calming Effect

Marjoram offers some unique and unavoidable benefits both for the body and nerve. It provides you with valuable benefits for your body. Moreover, Marjoram has calming properties that create a positive influence on the nerve. To reap those benefits, you can apply marjoram oil to your skin topically and use aromatically.

Revitalizing Effect

For ages, Marjoram has been a widely used natural essence to improve immunity in different cultures worldwide. Marjoram oil diluted with a soft carrier oil can have a reviving effect on your nervous system. But you must avoid ingesting it raw or mixed with anything else without the suggestion of a registered physician. To keep aloof from side effects, you can apply it topically or broadly on the skin, inhale as blends, and use it in a food recipe.

Stress Reliever

Marjoram essential oil can become the panacea for you while going through strenuous and challenging tasks. Just apply a bit of marjoram oil diluted with other carrier oil, creating the desired calming effect. Not to limit here, you can have your stress reduced by using sweet marjoram essential oil on the back of your neck. And to get rid of emotional anxiety, the calming properties in this oil can come to your rescue.

Heart Strengthening

To work hard, you need to build a healthy heart that can keep the body running without causing fatigue in a short while. With a diffuser, inhaler, and food recipe, you can keep your heart revitalized. Thus how you can have the required strength from marjoram essential oil through marjoram aroma and blends.

Crowd Pleaser

People who are up to hosting frequent parties and gathering find marjoram hint attenuated with several nutrients pretty useful. Just make food recipes with low-fat nutrients that include jalapenos, spinach, and artichoke, and you are ready to rock in the parties and any gathering.

Kid Comforter

Unlike other intense essential oils, it can do the magic where your "Rock-a-Bye Baby" fails to calm your fussy kid. The use of marjoram oil essence has a reputation for helping soothe an anxious child effectively. If you massage a bit of weakened marjoram oil to your baby's feet, a relaxed nap is a sweet fruit.

Culinary Flavor

Like an herb or oil essence, Marjoram is prominent as a spice blend and food recipe ingredient. You can replace dry or fresh Marjoram in your recipe with marjoram oil, and that will take your meal flavor to the next level. To spice up your meat dishes and increase the taste of your meal, you can use marjoram essential oil, and it has been used everywhere in the Mediterranean regions. But when replacing dried Marjoram, keep the count that one drop marjoram essential oil is equal to two tablespoons of dried Marjoram.

In this case, Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil should not pose a dilemma. It is because you can substitute one with the other.

Muscle Stress Easer

Marjoram essential oil has remained highly popular with bodybuilders, athletes, and people who maintain good fitness. Whenever a muscle pull or any part of your body is stressed, a soothing massage diluted with this oil work magic. You need to apply the suggested blend to the stressed and tired part of your body.

Oregano Essential Oil: The Differences and Similarities with Marjoram

Oregano is also a natural herb, and it belongs to the same herbal family that Marjoram does. They look almost the same as the oregano plant has oval and flat green leaves to your astonishment. Furthermore, Oregano, too, is an herb that stores the essence in the leaf. But it is the flavor and smell that have made all the differences. Oregano is pungent and spicy because it has high phenol content.

To trace the plant back in history, you will find legends that Greek and Modern cultures had a high following. The very name bears testimony to the claim made as the Greek word "oros" refers to the mountain, and "ganos" refers to pleasure or delight.

To establish root, it is a native to Europe, but now it spreads all over the world. The leaves and the shoots are the crucial part where the liquid essence is extracted from and distilled. Before distillation, the leaves and shoots get air-dried. This oil may cause irritation and side effects even when you use it as a blender and diffuser.

Like marjoram essential oil, Oregano also has such compounds that help increase immunity and strengthen your heart. But where does Oregano stand apart? Why is there confusion regarding Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil?

It is the cleansing properties and purifying agents that have separated it from the Marjoram. In cuisines too, it differs significantly with Marjoram. For its spicy taste, it is preferred in the spice-up blends. And in the blends and diffuser also, Oregano enjoys the preference to be an equalizer and enhancer. 

In the sections to follow, we will discuss more differences between the two essential oils. But before that, we must shed light upon the causes of why there is confusion.

Marjoram vs Oregano Essential Oil: Confusions between Oregano and Marjoram?

It is already told that these two herbs belong to the same mint family. Moreover, they are the species of the origanum genus and share the Latin names issuing from the Greek organon. More to add, they are native to the same geographic regions. Not to end here, some plants have Oregano in their name that matches with some marjoram plants by dint of taste, shape, and color of the leaves, and flavor. Let's us give the name of the plants below.

    • Origanum Vulgare and Wild Marjoram have broad leaves and intense oregano taste.
    • Origanum Onites and Pot Marjoram have smaller leaves that are not as sweet as Origanum Vulgare. Both the plants share commonalities with onion and garlic.
    • The pair of plants to mention is Origanum Heracleoticum and Winter Marjoram that have many things in common. And they both are popular in Italy.

Not to inspire that confusion of taking both the plants as identical or substitute, Marjoram sometimes and somewhere bears the name of knotted/sweet Marjoram. Now, we have discussed why people get confused between the plants. It is the turn to discuss the differences that make them stand wide apart if not poles apart.

Marjoram vs Oregano Essential Oil: Difference in Taste and Appearance

All the oregano plants are rich with high concentration carvacrol – an aromatic compound causing a savory flavor. Conversely, Marjoram is not that rich with carvacrol and offers a sweeter flavor. To compensate for the aroma, Marjoram has multiple compounds to derive its flavor. Whereas Oregano has a savory flavor and pungent taste, Marjoram has a woody, citrus, and floral smell.

As for the appearance, the difference between these two is too slim to distinguish between them. The difficulty in recognizing the plants lies in their acute commonness in looking on top of their shared identity as culinary herbs. They both have fuzzy green and oval-shaped leaves. And to add to the typical look, they both have purple flowers.

But to differentiate them effectively, you must be a keen observer in an herb garden. You will notice the Marjoram leaves clustering around the branch tips. On the other hand, oregano leaves dot along the stalk of the plant.

Thus how they differ in appearance and taste. Not to end here, they bear differences in some other aspects either that may inspire a dilemma of Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil. As told already, they are primarily culinary herbs, and you will come across both the oils in spice blends and food recipes. We are now examining the different responses and effects of marjoram and oregano essential oils in cooking.

Oregano in Cooking

Oregano herb can be a crucial culinary element in dry, ground, and liquid essence form. and you will find some of the most popular Oregano uses in tomato-related recipes. They range from pizza, pasta sauce to olive oil-centric dishes. For your information, olive oil is widely used in creating an oregano flavor.

The food items you can swap olive oil and oregano essential oil are lamb marinades, chicken, beef dishes, and Italian vinaigrette. Other aromatic herbs that go pretty well with Oregano are basil, onion, garlic, and thyme on top of the mentioned ingredients. You can go for red thyme essential oil here.

Before applying herb, you must crush the dried herb and chop the fresh herb. Thus how you can replace the essential oil by adding the hand-crushed or chopped herb in the dishes. Moreover, oregano leaves offer an excellent dressing option to moderate your cooking.

Let's mention some recipes that have oregano essential oil as a primary ingredient. Here you go with them. In these recipes, Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil may be replaced with the query Marjoram or Oregano. As these two can swap in some of them.

    • Seafood Gazpacho is a seafood recipe where you can replace tarragon with Oregano.
    • You use Oregano in any form in Italian Vinaigrette and other ingredients in this recipe. And the components include red wine vinegar, black pepper, minced garlic, salt, and lemon juice.
    • Pizza sauce can have Oregano to be an element. The other components to constitute the recipe are tomato paste, dried Oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, black powder, and tomato sauce.
    • Green Pozole is a famous and tasty food recipe that uses Oregano as a must-add ingredient.

Marjoram in Cooking

Marjoram finds it very popular with stews, meat dishes, and vegetable dishes. You can have Marjoram mixed with cheesecloth along with many fresh herbs. and they can be in stews, braises, and vegetable dishes as an aromatic sachet for its rich aroma. As the plant's fresh and oil essence, dried Marjoram is a popular ingredient to add to meat dishes, salad dressing, and preserved meats. In this case, the relevant question is Marjoram or Oregano, not Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil.

When you go for dried and fresh Marjoram, the effect is weaker than its counterpart oregano. And so you can use Marjoram as a substitute or main ingredient in delicious vegetable dishes and tomato-related dishes, including sauce, poultry seasoning, and pizza.

You will find Marjoram to be the crucial component of the following spice blends. And the famous spice blends include Herbes de Provence and Middle Eastern za'atar.

And famous recipes where Marjoram is a vital component are:

    • Classic vacation stuffing that has sage, thyme, and Marjoram
    • You have tomato sauce from Italy that include Marjoram.
    • You can have the marjoram and garlic bratwurst recipe made in your home with the other two elements – bread and sauerkraut.
    • Mix marjoram dressing and goat cheese to make Roasted Butternut Squash
    • Now use fresh Marjoram with roasted red peppers and garlic cloves.

How far do Marjoram and Oregano essential oil substitute or differ from each other?

Yes, they can substitute each other, but you have to keep the differences in mind. So far, taste or flavor concern, Oregano, is more intense. And this is the reason you must take more Marjoram to swap Oregano. Marjoram can be a good substitute only when you use a double amount of Marjoram compared to Oregano.

Oregano offers so many flavors, and the selection of substitution depends on the taste you want to encounter.

So, the question is not the only Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil, but it can be marjoram or oregano essential oil as well.

Wraping Up

So there are overlapping compounds and so uses of these two herbs match. But there are differences too, and knowing that would save you from substituting for wrong flavor and inadequate amount. You have learned about all the differences and matching features, substitution and swapping have become easier for you. Therefore, in situations where Marjoram vs Oregano essential oil is the query, the answer must be clear to you now.

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published