Homemade taco seasoning beats the store-bought version every time. Make a triple batch and keep it on hand for tacos, roasted potatoes and grilled meat.
This homemade taco seasoning occupies a special place in my spice drawer. We use it so often that I find myself making a triple batch of it at least once a month.
If you've ever found yourself standing in the grocery store aisle, squinting at rows of pre-packaged taco seasoning packets with a suspiciously long list of ingredients, you're not alone. Why not try making your own at home?
It takes no more than 5 minutes to make your own taco spice mix. And once you taste the homemade version, you’ll never want to go back to store-bought. Use it to flavor turkey taco meat, rub it on chicken before grilling or use it to flavor roast potatoes.
Also try my homemade blackened seasoning and homemade pumpkin pie spice mix.
💙 What's to love about DIY taco seasoning
Crafting your own taco seasoning allows you to tailor the flavor to your preferences. Adjust the ratios of individual spices to achieve the ideal taste that suits your palate. This homemade blend offers a convenient alternative to store-bought packets, providing you with complete control over the ingredients that go into your culinary creations. Whether used to season taco meat, potatoes, or as a rub for meats, this seasoning adds a savory dimension to your dishes.
See recipe card below for full ingredients list & recipe directions.
How to use it
Using homemade taco seasoning is as straightforward as it is delightful. This versatile blend of spices can add a burst of savory goodness to a variety of dishes. Here's how to make the most of it:
1. Taco Time: Naturally, the first and most classic use of homemade taco seasoning is in your tacos. Simply brown your choice of ground meat – whether it's beef, turkey or chicken – or sauté portobello mushrooms with onions and garlic, and sprinkle in the seasoning to taste. Add a touch of water or broth and let the flavors meld as the meat simmers. Spoon it into corn tortillas along with chopped lettuce, cheese and avocado, and you've got a crowd-pleasing meal. Try my Ground Turkey Taco Meat.
2. Roasted and Grilled: Elevate your roasted or grilled meats with a generous rub of homemade taco seasoning. Whether you're grilling up some chicken breasts, pork chops, shrimp or portobello mushrooms, this blend adds a delightful layer of flavor that pairs beautifully with the charred, smoky notes from the grill.
3. Sensational Spuds: Don't let your potatoes feel left out! Whether they're diced for roasting, sliced for fries, or shredded for hash browns, a sprinkle of homemade taco seasoning can transform them into a flavorful side dish.
4. Veggie Vibrancy: Don't underestimate the power of this seasoning to breathe life into your vegetables. Toss it with roasted Brussels sprouts or sautéed peppers and onions.
5. Marinating Magic: Mix the seasoning with a bit of oil and use it as a marinade for your proteins. Let the flavors infuse your meats before cooking.
6. One-Pot Wonders: Add a dash of homemade taco seasoning to soups, stews, and chili for an unexpected pop of flavor.
7. Popcorn Perk: Yes, you read that right! Sprinkle a bit of this seasoning onto freshly popped popcorn for a savory snack that will have you reaching for more. Try my Taco Popcorn Recipe.
KEEP IN TOUCH
and receive recipes straight to your inbox!
Tips for making this recipe
Crafting your own homemade taco seasoning is as easy as pie (or should we say taco?). Here are a few tips to ensure your seasoning blend turns out perfectly every time:
- Fresh Spices: Make sure your spices are fresh. Dried spices tend to lose their gusto after 6 to 12 months, particularly when stored in a warm area.
- Adjust to Taste: Feel free to tweak the ratios to your liking – a bit more cumin here, a touch less paprika there – until it's just right for your palate.
- Cayenne Caution: The cayenne pepper is optional, but if you decide to go for it, start with a small amount and gradually increase until you reach your desired heat level.
Make Ahead and Storage
Prepare a larger batch of homemade taco seasoning and store it in an airtight container in a cool, dark place. Properly stored, it should maintain its flavorful allure for several months.
Why Homemade Taco Seasoning Is Better Than Store-Bought
When you make it at home, you're in control of what goes into your food. No added preservatives, no artificial flavors – just a medley of spices that you know and trust. Store-bought versions tend to be very salty. Using taco seasoning ingredients from your spice cabinet allows you to control the flavor and sodium level.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Not necessarily. The heat level can be adjusted to your preference by adding more or less cayenne pepper. You're the boss of your spice tolerance!
A good rule of thumb is to start with about 2-3 tablespoons of seasoning for one pound of meat. Adjust according to your taste. It's always easier to add more, but impossible to take away if you add too much to start. In my ground turkey taco meat recipe, I use one batch of this taco seasoning, which is about ¼ cup (4 tablespoons).
Absolutely! Homemade taco seasoning makes a thoughtful and delicious gift. Package it in a cute jar, add a ribbon, and you've got a culinary present that's sure to impress. See my Flavored Salts post for packaging ideas.
Yes, that’s fine. Smoked paprika adds a lovely smoky flavor, but your taco seasoning will stay taste good when sweet paprika is used.
Other Recipes You'll Love
If you make this recipe, please let me know! Leave a star rating ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ and comment underneath the recipe card below. Thank you!
Homemade Taco Seasoning
- In a bowl, combine all of the ingredients. Stir to combine thoroughly.
- Store in an airtight container in a cool, dark place for up to 6 months.
Disclosure: I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.