RECIPE: Homemade Taco Seasoning

Even though it is sometimes cost-prohibitive, I’ve been trying to make a more conscious effort to do things more naturally around the house and in the kitchen. One of the cheap AND easy things for us to change was to stop buying pre-packaged taco seasoning and to make our own instead. This avoids the high sodium, MSG (manufacturers are getting smarter with their labeling; anything that says “yeast extract” is essentially a teeeeeeny bit more natural version of MSG in disguise), silicon dioxide (though this is probably present in small amounts in chili powder, which you will use for this recipe), and a host of other mysterious potential ingredients. On top of that, it simply tastes better and fresher, and you can modify it to your own particular preferences.

Everything in this recipe is highly modifiable…I hope you tweak it so it is perfect for your family! Enjoy.


1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dried cilantro
1/4 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper (you could also use red pepper flakes to taste)
1 teaspoon dried minced onions
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon white sugar

You can make this in greater quantities and store it in an airtight container so it is ready for taco night.

Brown the meat that you’re going to use (we use ground turkey), and drain it if it was less than 90-93% lean. Add 2/3 cup of water to the hot skillet with the meat still in it. Two heaping tablespoons of seasoning  mix per one pound of meat is a great ratio, though you may prefer more or less based on your taste. Add it to your skillet, stir in well, and simmer for about five minutes before serving.

This would also be great to use in vegetarian/vegan tacos. Just substitute a pound of cooked, drained beans for a pound of meat, and add your seasoning.

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