Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe (Secret Family Favorite)

Homemade DIY Taco Seasoning Blend Recipe

I can get my kids to eat almost anything with ketchup or homemade ranch dressing on top… or if I season it with taco seasoning. In fact, I know many moms who keep taco seasoning packets on hand to use in the thousands of kid-friendly ways suggested by Pinterest.

I lived in Texas for much of my life and I fell in love with the flavors of both Tex Mex and authentic Mexican cuisine. This taco seasoning mix is a family favorite mix of these classic flavors that has been carefully perfected over many years.

Why Make Taco Seasoning?

Store bought taco seasoning is crazy over-priced for the 2 tablespoons of actual spices it contains. It also often contains things like MSG, anti-caking agents and artificial colors or flavors.

This homemade version is really easy to make. Make it in bulk and store in a glass jar so you’ll always have it on hand. The gentle blend of flavors is great with much more than just tacos though. Add it to scrambled eggs, mayo, stir frys, soups and even salad dressings!

Our family favorite is to make taco meat using this seasoning and serve in lettuce leaves with green onions on top.

If you’ve ever bought taco seasoning packets from the store, this is a simple and cost effective switch you can make right away.

What spices are in taco seasoning?

When you make taco mix yourself, you’ll find it is incredibly easy! You only need a few basic spices:

How much is in a packet of taco seasoning mix?

A packet of taco seasoning contains the equivalent of 2-3 tablespoons of this recipe. Often, thickeners and fillers are added but these can be omitted to let the natural flavors shine through.

How to use homemade taco spices to replace packets:

Use 2-3 tablespoons of this spice + 1/4 cup of water per pound of meat. Add the spice and water while the meat is browning and cook on medium high heat until the water has evaporated and the meat is fully cooked.

How to Make Taco Seasoning:

Homemade DIY Taco Seasoning Blend Recipe

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Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe

Prep

Total

Yield 1 cup

Homemade taco seasoning is simple and cost effective to make and easily takes the place of store bought seasoning packets for quick meals.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup Chili Powder
  • 1/4 cup Cumin Powder
  • 1 tablespoon Garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons Onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon Oregano leaf (or oregano leaf powder)
  • 1 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1 Tablespoon Himalayan salt or Sea salt (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon ground pepper

Instructions

  1. First, select a wide mouth jar or container for your spices.
  2. Then, put all the spices in the jar and shake well or mix in a food processor until combined.
  3. Store in an airtight jar for up to six months.

Notes

To use: sprinkle on ground beef or chicken as you would any store bought taco seasoning. 3 tablespoons is the same as 1 packet of store bought taco seasoning. Great for lettuce tacos.

Courses Spice

Like this recipe? Check out my new cookbook, or get all my recipes (over 500!) in a personalized weekly meal planner here!

Want to make other spices too?

Check out my full list of spices you can make at home with basic ingredients to overhaul your spice cabinet today! You’ll love it because the flavor of fresh, homemade spice blends is incredible and you’ll save money too!

What are your favorite seasonings?

This amazing homemade taco seasoning recipe with herbs and spices is inexpensive to make and takes the place of store bought seasoning packets with MSG.

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Reader Comments

  1. I love adding ground Coriander (Cilantro). It definitely boosts the flavour. I also use ground cumin, ground paprika and salt & pepper. Hadn’t thought to add garlic powder & onion powder. Lucky me – burritos are on the menu tonight! Will have to give it a go.

  2. When you add this recipe to your hamburger do you add water too? If you do how much water?

    • See above… in the recipe.

  3. And I was just wondering how to make taco seasoning…. Another timely post!
    Thanks so much. Your blog is what got me started on my journey to better health!

  4. Is the salt amount correct … 1/4 cup?

    • I used sea salt, and 1/4 cup salt is WAY too much! I go light on the salt so only used 1/2 table spoon and it was great.

      • I use 1tsp salt for every pound of hamburger I fry up. Of course, use a quality salt, not the blue canister of death in the groceries.
        For this, I just omitted the salt, we like stuff very flavored so it was still good. Then I added my usual tsp of salt and some fresh pepper. We still all use redhot with it, I put my hotpepper vinegar on it too. I put that on most everything lol

    • I also followed the recipe and used 1/4 cup salt. WAY TOO MUCH! I am sure the author has made a typo?! Please correct ASAP:) Otherwise, fabulous recipe.

    • It doesn’t say 1/4 cup salt! You only need very little or non at all

  5. Do you try to stay away from night shade vegetables and ingredients? Has affected your hashimotos? I’m just wandering if it’s worth a try. I haven’t been diagnosed but have all the symptoms. But the idea of not being able to enjoy Mexican flavor is a bit much.

  6. Any suggested seasoning when nightshade are not able to be consumed. Ex.peppers

    • Because I hadnt salted much, I, reluctantly, used 1 Tbsp. Certainly didnt need any more. I did add some cayenne, just a tsp or so. Nice!

      I’ll take a quart to my grown sons tomorrow. Homegrown tomatoes and a rich homemade bone broth gave some depth of flavor. So yummy!

  7. Do you have suggestions for when you are following an AIP meal plan?

  8. I make my own achiote paste. The paste is marinated or rubbed directly on meat or seafood before grilling.

    2 tablespoons annatto seeds
    1 teaspoon cumin seeds
    1 teaspoon oregano
    6 allspice berries
    1 teaspoon sea salt
    4 garlic cloves, pressed
    4 tablespoons lime juice

    Combine the annatto seeds, cumin seeds, oregano, allspice berries, and salt in a spice mill or coffee grinder. Grind to a powderlike consistency. In a small bowl, mix the powder with the garlic and lime juice. Store in an airtight container, in the refrigerator.

  9. I made this today. Way too much salt. I’m having to brown two more pounds of ground beef to dilute what I have already made. Then I’ll make the mix without salt. (I used organic sea salt.)

  10. This was delicious and easy. I used half the recommended salt and cooked it with beef. Thank you!

  11. Wish I had read the comments before making this. WAY too much salt. The meat is borderline inedible.

  12. Tasty except for the salt. Beyond way too much. Great taste on the rest of it though

  13. is it possible to add arrowroot so that it creates a sauce like the store bought packets? I made this and the taste is good, but it’s still just crumbly ground beef with taco flavor, I want the saucey texture of the store bought taco seasoning. If so, how much would you add to this recipe?

    • I found that if you just add about 3 oz of tomato paste and a small amount of either water or broth, it achieves the sauce-like consistency you’re talking about.

    • I add canned pintos with the liquid to all my mexican meat. You could add some cornstarch to thicken. I also add a can of diced tomatoes now too, with the liquid. Nice and saucy, but again, I thicken it cuz I dont want to strain off the nutrients of TASTE.
      Dare I say I add alot of chopped onion and grn pepper to all my mexican meat too??? Raw onion and pepper is great on top of the meat too! But gotta have them!

  14. I used less then recommended paprika and salt and everyone ( my family ;I can’t have beef) said it was way to over powering to all of the other seasoning.

  15. Way too salty! Is the amount correct?

  16. I made this with a sprinkle of salt and smoked paprika. It was amazing! (I’m not a fan of salt and I probably could have done without it altogether. I was looking to make my own after the cumin/peanut contamination scares. I loved it! Thank you so much!

  17. Just made homemade taco seasoning – recipe calls for 1/4 cup sea salt. WAY TOO MUCH! Seasoned meat is not edible. Suggest no more than 1 T sea salt.

  18. Thank You, I will never buy a taco packet again!!

  19. This Louisiana Lady’s family loves your taco seasoning. I’ve used it along with marinades for chicken and other meats, in smaller amounts of course. Adds great flavor. Love it!

  20. This blend is a very good mix. However, please update the Salt measurement. 2 tablespoons is WAY TOO MUCH SALT!

  21. Do you have smaller amount measurements for us mere mortals?

  22. Is the chili powder a blend “with other spices” or just ground chili’s?

  23. Sidebar question — Does anyone have an idea for how to keep garlic powder from turning rock hard in its (supposedly airtight) jar? I live in a high-humidity area and even just opening the jar to use the product seems to let in enough moisture to cause problems.

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