Homemade Taco Seasoning is a tradition in my house. When I first met my husband he would buy the pre-packaged mixes at the grocery. When I showed him how easy it was to prepare it at home, he felt a little silly. I guess he never realized he already had all the ingredients in his pantry and it was so convenient for him to just buy it at the store.
And it was convenient for him to do this as a bachelor. But once we moved into an apartment together, we began cooking together each night for dinner. Once he realized exactly how EASY it was, he has never looked back. He still employs this method even at the fire station where quick and convenient meals are a necessity. It makes him chuckle when one of his crew members asks him what he’s cooking that smells so good. When he explains just how easy it is to cook flavorful meals from scratch, they are amazed. He makes me so proud. 😉
The other point to be made about making Homemade Taco Seasoning is cost. A store-bought, brand-name mix will cost at least $1 if not $2 for a very small amount of pre-packaged seasoning blend — there are only 2-1/4 tablespoons (.25 ounces) in each packet! This is only enough for 1-pound of ground beef so obviously if you’re cooking over 1-pound of ground beef, you need to buy another packet for each extra pound of meat to be seasoned. This really adds up quick and drives up the overall cost of the meal especially when you consider that seasoning packet costs just about half as much as the cost of each 1-pound of ground beef, depending on your locale, the cut of meat, the fat content among other factors. Combining the seasoning blend at home from spices you probably already have in your pantry costs just pennies on the dollar. PENNIES. ON. THE. DOLLAR.
The last point I want to make about this Homemade Taco Seasoning is quality. Making this mix myself takes just a few minutes a month but I know exactly what’s going into it. There’s no hidden MSG, artificial flavors, artificial colors, stabilizers or anti-caking agents. I make this recipe up in a really large batch and I store it in a tightly sealed mason jar in my pantry. Then when I need some taco mix, I use 2 rounded tablespoons per pound of meat (or soy crumbles) and I’m good to go.
Homemade Taco Seasoning
- 2 Tbsps dried onion flakes
- 2 tsps dark chili powder
- 2 tsps cumin
- 2 tsps salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 tsps cornstarch
- Mix all the ingredients together. Store any unused portion in an airtight container with a tight fitting lid. Store away from light. Stable for 6 months.
- For tacos: Brown ground meat and add 2 tablespoons of taco seasoning to every 1 pound of ground meat. Add 1/2 cup of water and bring to a simmer and then reduce heat and continue to simmer until thickened, stirring often.