Know Your Ingredients: Annatto

by Gio


What it is
Annato, called CI 75120 in the EU, is derived from the seeds of the plant Bixa orellana, commonly called “the lipstick tree”.

What it does
Annatto gives cosmetics a red or orange colour.

Side effects
Annatto is generally considered to be safe.


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Allison January 27, 2014 - 3:21 am

I have annatto seeds that I use in cooking! They add some heat to a recipe, especially used in Ethiopian spice mixes. It does give a red/orange shade. Must be the same? But I never knew it was from the lipstick tree 🙂

Gio January 27, 2014 - 9:51 pm

Allison, yep they’re the same. I don’t think I have ever eaten them though. Must remedy that!


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