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The Best Homemade Taco Seasoning

Seven simple ingredients are blended together to create the best homemade taco seasoning. This recipe makes a bulk batch of seasoning to keep in your pantry. It is low-sodium yet full of flavor. You will never buy packaged taco seasoning again.

A small jar of taco seasoning with a spoonful of seasoning on a table with cherry tomatoes and cilantro leaves.
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I love making my own spice blends. When I make them at home, I can get them to taste exactly the way I want and I can make a large batch for a fraction of the price of packaged seasoning, especially when I buy the individual ingredients in bulk.

We use this homemade taco seasoning all the time. In fact, as soon as we finish a batch, we make another, so it’s ready for next time. I love that you can play with the flavors a bit, depending on what you feel like at the time.

Most of the blends I buy in the store are either bland or overpowering. And most store-bought seasoning blends are extremely high in salt, even the low-sodium options.

This blend contains a small amount of salt, less than two teaspoons for the entire batch. However, you can easily omit the salt if you need a no-salt taco seasoning, and it will not sacrifice the flavor.

And if you are looking to add more homemade seasonings to your pantry, then you need to try the Best Brisket Rub we’ve used. It’s perfect for all sorts of beef recipes, especially when done on the grill or in the smoker.

Why this recipe works

You control the flavour – By blending your own spices, you control how spicy or salty it is. You also avoid things like extra preservatives, msg, and anti-caking agents.

It’s inexpensive – You can make a large batch at a fraction of the price of pre-made packages.

This bulk batch recipe will make almost one cup of seasoning, about ten tablespoons, to be exact, which is enough for several meals, and it only takes minutes to prepare. You can also double or triple the batch if you want to keep a larger quantity on-hand.

It’s versatile – This taco seasoning blend can be used for so much more than tacos. Use it in any recipe that calls for taco seasoning or season burritos, fajitas, soup, chicken, pork and chili!

Looking for some recipes to use with this seasoning? Try these pulled pork tacos, this salsa chicken, or these stuffed bell peppers. It is also used in these grilled chicken burritos.

Ingredients for taco seasoning on a round plate with a small wire whisk.

Ingredients & Substitutions

For a full list of ingredients and measurements, see the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.

There are only seven simple ingredients in this blend:

Chili powder – This ingredient forms the recipe’s base and gives the seasoning its spicy flavour.

Paprika – Adds additional peppery flavour, but is much milder than chili powder. If you want a bolder flavour seasoning, you can use hot paprika or my favourite, smoked paprika.

Cumin – A common flavour in Tex-Mex cuisine, this gives the seasoning its distinct taco flavour.

Onion powder or flakes – I’ve used both onion flakes and onion powder in this recipe with great results. Often what I choose is simply dependent on what I have on hand at the time.

Dried oregano – Adds just a bit of herb flavour to the seasoning. If you need to substitute with ground oregano, reduce to one teaspoon.

Granulated garlic – You can use granulated garlic or garlic powder. Avoid garlic salt, however, as it will make the seasoning overly salty.

Kosher salt – I prefer kosher salt in my recipes due to the slightly milder salt flavour. This recipe contains a very small amount of salt, only one and a half teaspoons in the entire large batch. However, you can omit this ingredient if you need to follow a low or no-sodium diet.

Pro Tip – If you want this seasoning spicier, you can add some cayenne pepper, chili flakes, or chipotle chili powder. The nice thing about making it yourself is that you can decide how spicy it is. Just experiment and have fun.

Ingredients for homemade taco seasoning.

Step by Step Instructions

  • Add all of the ingredients to a small bowl.
  • Mix well.
  • Transfer the blended spice to an airtight container or jar for storage.

That’s it! It really is that simple.

Once you start making homemade seasoning blends, you will never want to buy them from a store again. Not only do they taste better, but in the long run they are far less expensive as well.

Ingredients for taco seasoning in a small dish mixed with a small wire whisk.

How to use Homemade Taco seasoning

You can use this blend in any recipe that calls for taco seasoning.

If you are using it for ground beef tacos, I use about one tablespoon of seasoning per pound of beef. But honestly, I eyeball it, so sometimes it’s more, and sometimes less.

If I’m not adding salsa or tomato sauce to my tacos, I’ll add between ¼ and ⅓ cup of water or beef broth to help it mix with the beef; however, you will want to keep in mind that this is a seasoning blend, not a sauce. There are no thickeners in the seasoning, so you don’t want to add too much liquid. Just add enough to help it mix with the meat.

You can also use this seasoning with ground chicken or ground turkey for chicken or turkey tacos. Use it just as you would for beef tacos.

In addition to tacos, this blend is one of our favourites for seasoning chicken wings or legs. You could also use it in your chilli, soups or stews.

If you like this recipe, be sure to check out this collection of 21 homemade seasoning and sauce recipes!

A small jar of homemade taco seasoning with a small wooden spoon.

Top Tips and FAQs

  • For the best flavor, make sure the individual spices are fresh.
  • Keep the blended seasoning in an air-tight container to preserve freshness and flavor.
  • For a no-sodium taco seasoning, you can omit the salt.
How much homemade taco seasoning for 1 pound of ground beef?

You will want one to two tablespoons of taco seasoning for one pound of ground meat, depending on how spicy you like it.

How much water to add to homemade taco seasoning?

You can add between ¼ cup and ⅓ cup water or broth to the cooked meat if you like to help the seasoning mix and add a bit of moisture.

More Homemade Seasonings & Sauce Recipes

More Homemade Seasoning Blends to Try

Rotisserie Chicken Seasoning – by Flavor Mosaic
Italian Seasoning – by Kylee Cooks

Recipe

A small jar of taco seasoning with a spoonful of seasoning on a table with cherry tomatoes and cilantro leaves.

The Best Homemade Taco Seasoning

Seven simple ingredients are blended together to create the best homemade taco seasoning. This recipe makes a bulk batch of seasoning to keep on hand in your pantry. 
4.59 from 100 votes
Print Pin Save Recipe Rate
Course: Seasonings
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 10 Tablespoons
Calories: 22kcal
Author: Deanna

Ingredients

  • 3 tablespoon Chili powder
  • 2 tablespoon Ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoon Paprika regular or smoked
  • 1 Tbsp Garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon Oregano
  • 1 tablespoon Onion powder or flakes
  • 1.5 tsp Kosher salt

Instructions

  • Blend all ingredients together in a small bowl.
  • Store in an airtight container.

Video

Notes

For a no-sodium seasoning, omit salt.

Nutrition

Estimated Nutrition Facts
The Best Homemade Taco Seasoning
Serving Size
 
1 tbsp
Amount per Serving
Calories
22
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
1
g
2
%
Saturated Fat
 
0.1
g
1
%
Sodium
 
313
mg
14
%
Carbohydrates
 
4
g
1
%
Fiber
 
2
g
8
%
Sugar
 
0.4
g
0
%
Protein
 
1
g
2
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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Recipe Rating




Donna

Saturday 9th of March 2024

I added 1 T black pepper and it's just perfect for so many things. Thanks for coming up with the right ratios! I make tacos, stuffed peppers, pinto beans and more with this seasoning.

Deanna

Monday 11th of March 2024

You are very welcome. I'm glad you love it as much as we do; I always have a huge batch on hand and use it for so many things.

Meghan

Wednesday 8th of July 2020

Thanks for sharing! I made tacos before I realized I was out of seasoning! Worked great and your right! Probably won't go back to store bought!

Jaime

Monday 27th of April 2020

Do you use water with your 1TB of seasoning like the packets call for, if so, how much water

Deanna

Monday 27th of April 2020

It depends a bit on how much moisture or fat my beef has and if I've added anything else, like salsa. But if I'm using just the beef and taco seasoning I will generally end up adding about 1/4 cup of water. If it's really lean beef I may add a bit more.

Maddie

Thursday 16th of April 2020

I’m allergic to paprika, is there a good alternative?

Deanna

Sunday 19th of April 2020

Hi Maddie. I think you could just leave it out. Most of the flavour in this seasoning comes from the other spices and the paprika adds just a wee bit of heat, bulk and colour. You could add a bit of extra chilli powder, or 1/2 tsp cayenne, depending on how spicy you like it.

Kim

Thursday 26th of March 2020

How much of the seasoning do you use for 1 lbs of beef?

Deanna

Thursday 26th of March 2020

I usually use about 1 tablespoon for a pound of ground beef, but I really just eyeball it. You can use more or less depending on how much flavour you are looking for.

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