Aniseed Seeds Whole are a small oval-shaped seed which are native to the Mediterranean. They have a light brown colour and a sweet liquorice flavour that makes them great for sweet and savoury dishes alike. Aniseed seeds are not related to star anise which is native to China. Even though they have similar flavours, star anise is much stronger. Consequently, aniseed can be used as a substitute for star anise, and vice versa.