Taco Seasoning Recipe

Say goodbye to bland tacos with this homemade taco seasoning! Our quick and simple taco seasoning is packed with authentic Mexican flavors and way better than store-bought. 

by Ioana

Published :


homemade taco seasoning recipe in a jar with a gold spoon

This post may contain affiliate links. Read our disclosure policy.

I’ve found a great way to save money and cut out unnecessary additives like dairy, cornstarch, and sugar, which are often in store-bought seasoning packets. 

My homemade taco seasoning is not only healthier, but it also brings an amazing flavor boost to various dishes. I love using it in everything from classic taco meat to creative taco salads, hearty taco soups, and even as a zesty rub for grilled vegetables or meats. 

It’s a versatile mix that really livens up any meal, and making it yourself means you have full control over the ingredients – perfect for tailoring to your dietary needs or taste preferences!

All my friends rave about my cooking, often saying it captures the authentic flavors and tastes they adore. Do you want to know my secret for every delicious, authentic meal? It’s simple: I use homemade spice blends. They pack an intense flavor punch, made with fresh spices and a lot of love.

Take, for instance, my taco seasoning recipe. It’s a spice blend I cherish, not just for Mexican dishes but for so much more. The ideal mix of spices adds that extra zing to any ground meat or gives a Mexican casserole that special touch. Whether it’s a family dinner or a get-together with friends, this seasoning is my go-to for adding that perfect flavor kick.

Why You’ll Love My Taco Seasoning Recipe:

  1. Packed with Flavor: Each tablespoon combines classic spices like chili powder, cumin, and paprika, offering a depth of flavor that store-bought alternatives can’t match.
  2. Wholesomely Homemade: You’re using only natural, unprocessed spices, which means no hidden additives or preservatives – just pure, robust taste.
  3. Customizable: The beauty of homemade seasoning is the ability to adjust it to your liking. Want it spicier? Add more chili powder. Prefer it less salty? Reduce the salt. It’s all in your hands.
  4. Versatility at Its Best: While it’s perfect for tacos, this seasoning goes beyond. It’s a fantastic addition to grilling rubs, soups, casseroles, and even as a topping for popcorn!
  5. Budget-friendly: Making your own seasoning is not only satisfying but also kinder to your wallet compared to buying pre-made mixes.
  6. Long Shelf Life: Stored properly in an airtight container, this seasoning can last up to 7 months. This means you always have some on hand for impromptu taco nights!
  7. Healthy Alternative: By controlling what goes into your seasoning, you’re avoiding unwanted fillers and excessive salt that are common in commercial packets.
  8. Great for Batch Cooking: Easily double or triple the recipe to ensure you have a hearty supply for future culinary adventures.
thefoodieblogger homemade taco seasoning blend in a spoon

What Is Taco Seasoning?

Taco seasoning is a blend of spices and herbs commonly used in Mexican and Tex-Mex cooking. It’s primarily used to season meats for dishes like tacos, burritos, and enchiladas, but it’s also great for flavoring soups and other recipes.

The typical ingredients in taco seasoning are chili powder, cumin, paprika, oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. This combination offers a balance of heat, earthiness, and savory flavors, making it a staple in many kitchens.

One of the best things about taco seasoning is its versatility. Beyond traditional uses in tacos and burritos, it can be used to infuse Mexican-inspired flavors into a wide range of dishes, from fajitas and nachos to stews and grilled vegetables. Its adaptability makes it a favorite for adding a quick and easy flavor boost to any meal.

Taco Seasoning Video Tutorial

YouTube video

DIY Taco Seasoning Ingredients and Substitutions

Here is the list of the ingredients that we need to make this delicious and easy taco seasoning recipe:

  • Chili Powder – Adds heat and depth to the seasoning. You can also use cayenne pepper instead.
  • Cumin – Provides a warm, earthy, and slightly citrusy flavor. Try using freshly ground cumin seeds to offer a more robust flavor. 
  • Paprika – Choose between sweet, smoked, or hot paprika based on your flavor preference. Smoked paprika can add a delightful smokiness to the seasoning.
  • Dried Oregano – Mexican oregano can provide a distinct flavor, but Mediterranean oregano works well too. Adjust the quantity to avoid overpowering other spices.
  • Onion Powder – Adds a sweet and savory onion flavor. Choose high-quality onion powder for a more authentic taste. 
  • Garlic Powder – you can also use dried onion flakes.
  • Salt and Pepper – bring all the flavors together.
taco seasoning ingredients

How To Make Homemade Taco Seasoning

I love how easy it is to make this delicious taco seasoning; in only a few minutes, you can make the best seasoning. I usually make a larger batch and store it, in some of these glass spice jars. Here is everything you have to do:

Prepare Your Ingredients

Before you start, ensure you have all the necessary ingredients measured and ready to go. This includes chili powder, cumin, paprika, dried oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, Kosher salt, and black pepper.

Combine the Spices

Combine the chili powder, cumin, paprika, dried oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, Kosher salt, and black pepper in a small bowl. Use either a spoon or a whisk to thoroughly mix the ingredients, ensuring an even distribution of flavors.

Taste and Adjust

Taste the seasoning mixture; if necessary, feel free to adjust the ratios of each spice according to your flavor profile. 

Transfer to an Airtight Container

Transfer the homemade taco seasoning to an airtight container. A small jar or a spice container with a tight-sealing lid works well for preserving freshness.

Use it to make a delicious taco meat or soup.

uses of taco seasoning

Tips And Variations

  • Always use fresh spices for the most vibrant flavors. Check the expiration dates on your spices and replace them if needed.
  • Taste your taco seasoning as you go and adjust the quantities of individual spices to match your preferences for heat, smokiness, or sweetness.
  • Try different chili powders for unique flavors. Ancho chili powder provides a mild, fruity taste, while chipotle adds a smoky kick. Blend them for a custom mix.
  • Adjust the ratio of dried oregano to suit your preference. If you enjoy a stronger herbal note, add a bit more; for a milder taste, reduce the quantity.
  • Because it’s faster and cleaner, I prefer to combine the ingredients in a jar. If you want the seasoning to have a fine texture, you can blend them.
  • Add a zesty kick with a dash of dried lime or orange zest. This adds a refreshing, citrusy note to your taco seasoning.
  • Create a paste by mixing the seasoning with a bit of olive oil. This can be rubbed onto meat or vegetables before cooking for a more intense flavor.

How To Use Taco Seasoning

Using taco seasoning is a simple and versatile way to add robust Mexican flavors to a variety of dishes. Here are some ideas on how to use taco seasoning:

  • Ground Meat: Cook ground beef, chicken, turkey, or plant-based alternatives in a pan. Drain excess fat, sprinkle taco seasoning over the meat, and add a bit of water. Simmer until the meat absorbs the flavors.
  • Shredded Chicken: Season shredded cooked chicken with taco seasoning for tasty chicken tacos.
  • Vegetables: Toss sliced bell peppers, onions, and any desired vegetables in taco seasoning. Sauté until they are tender but still crisp. Add to fajitas with your choice of protein.
  • Rice and Beans: Stir taco seasoning into cooked rice or beans in burritos or burrito bowls for a flavorful base.
  • Cheese and Protein: Sprinkle taco seasoning between layers of cheese and protein when making quesadillas. This adds depth to the flavor.
  • Chips and Cheese: Layer tortilla chips with seasoned meat, cheese, and other toppings. Bake until the cheese is melted, and then add fresh ingredients like tomatoes, lettuce, and sour cream.
  • Marinade: Mix taco seasoning with olive oil and use it as a marinade for chicken, steak, or shrimp before grilling.
  • Broth Base: Enhance the flavor of soups or stews by stirring taco seasoning into the broth. This works well with chicken, black bean, or vegetable soups.
  • Sour Cream Dip: Mix taco seasoning into sour cream for a quick and flavorful dip. Perfect for serving with tortilla chips or raw veggies.:
  • Protein Boost: Season grilled chicken, shrimp, or tofu with taco seasoning and add them to salads for a Mexican-inspired twist.

Storing Ideas

Transfer the taco seasoning to an airtight container to prevent moisture and air from affecting the quality of the spices. A glass jar or a plastic container with a tight-sealing lid works well.

Dark and Cool Place: Store the container in a dark and cool place, away from direct sunlight and heat for up to 7 months. This helps preserve the potency of the spices and prevents them from deteriorating.

Moisture can lead to clumping and compromise the quality of the taco seasoning.

Check the taco seasoning for any signs of moisture, discoloration, or loss of aroma. If you notice any of these, it might be time to refresh your supply.

homemade taco seasoning

Frequently Asked Questions 

Can I Adjust The Spice Level In Homemade Taco Seasoning?

Absolutely! Taco seasoning is highly customizable. Start with a small amount and taste as you go. Adjust the ratios of chili powder or black pepper to control the heat according to your preference.

What Type Of Chili Powder Is Best For Taco Seasoning?

The best chili powder for taco seasoning depends on your taste preference. Ancho chili powder offers mild heat and a fruity flavor, while chipotle imparts a smoky kick. Experiment with blends to find your ideal mix.

Can I Freeze Homemade Taco Seasoning?

Yes, freezing taco seasoning is a good way to extend its shelf life. Store it in a sealed container or a zip-top freezer bag. Thaw before use and ensure it’s well mixed.

The Best Homemade Taco Seasoning Recipe

5 from 1 vote
Say goodbye to bland tacos with this homemade taco seasoning! Our quick and simple taco seasoning is packed with authentic Mexican flavors and way better than store-bought.
Author: Ioana
Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
8 tablespoons


  • 1 tbsp chili powder*
  • ½ tbsp cumin or more to taste
  • 1 ½ tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper


  1. Ensure you have all the ingredients measured and ready to go.
  2. Combine the chili powder, cumin, paprika, dried oregano, garlic powder, onion powder, Kosher salt, and black pepper in a small bowl. Use a spoon or whisk to mix the ingredients thoroughly.
  3. Taste the seasoning mixture and adjust the ratios if needed.
  4. Transfer the taco seasoning to an airtight container, such as a small jar or a spice container with a tight-sealing lid. Label the container with the date and contents.


This recipe makes about 8 tablespoons of taco seasoning.
Use 2 tablespoons of this taco seasoning mix for 1 pound of ground meat. This is equivalent to one pack of store-bought seasoning (1 oz.).
*This recipe calls for American chili powder, which is a distinct spice blend made of ground dried chiles along with a variety of other spices. It’s important to note that this is different from chile powder, which is typically made solely from ground-dried chiles.

Nutrition Information

Serving: 1 tablespoon, Calories: 17 kcal, Carbohydrates: 3 g, Protein: 1 g, Fat: 0.4 g, Saturated Fat: 0.1 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.2 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 0.1 g, Sodium: 891 mg, Potassium: 88 mg, Fiber: 1 g, Sugar: 0.3 g, Vitamin A: 960 IU, Vitamin C: 0.3 mg, Calcium: 26 mg, Iron: 1 mg

The nutritional information provided on this website is intended to be a helpful reference and convenience for our users. It is offered as a courtesy and is based on data primarily sourced from the USDA Food Composition Database.

We kindly request that you do not take screenshots or copy/paste our recipes to social media or other websites. We would greatly appreciate it if you could instead share a link to our recipe along with a photo.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
homemade taco seasoning pinterest

Leave a Comment

Recipe Rating

Unlock Exclusive Benefits

Don't miss a thing - subscribe to our food-filled newsletter.