Taco seasoning with smoked paprika, chili powder, cumin, garlic, & onion, is easy to make, perfect for adding bold flavors & saves money!
This homemade taco seasoning mix is super easy to make, super easy to adjust to your tastes, and a great addition to your spice cabinet! Use it in your favorite taco recipe, or sprinkle it over dishes like air fryer sweet potato fries or smashed potatoes to add more flavor!
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Taco seasoning ingredients
- Smoked paprika – Made from peppers that are smoked and dried over oak fires, the flavor is sweet and cool, not spicy.
- Garlic powder – Dried ground garlic powder, make sure you’re not using garlic salt.
- Cumin – Dried ground cumin, adds warmth without heat. This gives that classic taco flavor too.
- Onion powder – Dried ground onion powder.
- Chili powder – Dried ground chili powder. This is what adds spice to the recipe, increase this if you want to add a kick.
- Salt & black pepper – I find fresh cracked black pepper gives the best flavor.
How do you make homemade taco seasoning? (step-by-step)
⭐ First, add all the measured dried spices to a clean dry bowl.
⭐ Then, mix thoroughly with a fork or a whisk, making sure to break up any clumps.
⭐ Next, carefully pour spice blend into an airtight container.
⭐ Finally, store in a cool dry place until ready to use.
Why make your own taco seasoning?
I love a quick-grab packet as much as the next gal, but there really is something to be said for making your own spice blends!
- Adjust the flavor to your tastes.
- Gluten free.
- Know exactly what’s in them.
- No additives, preservatives, fillers, colorings, or anti-caking agents.
- Money saving.
Can you make taco spice blend ahead of time?
Absolutely! We typically make a large jar and use it over the course of several months.
This recipe makes about the equivalent of two store bought packets, but you can increase the recipe to reflect the amount you think you’ll use.
How much taco seasoning in a recipe?
Two – three tablespoons of our homemade blend will equal about one store bought packet. For a recipe that is going to feed 4 – 6, you’ll want to include one packet’s worth (2 – 3 tablespoons).
Leftovers and storage
How do you store taco seasoning?
Spice blends should be stored in an airtight container in a cool dry environment (like an air conditioned house).
Do not store them in the refrigerator as they will condensate when you bring them out and it can cause clumping.
How long does DIY taco seasoning last?
Dried spice blends theoretically last forever, but will begin to lose flavor potency after about 6 months.
Tips, tricks, and frequently asked questions
How much taco seasoning is in a packet?
You’ll want to use 2 – 3 tablespoons of homemade taco seasoning to equal a grocery store taco spice packet. The spice packet may have more volume to it, but that’s because commercial spice packets often have starch or anti-caking agents included in them.
How do I make my taco seasoning spicier?
To increase the spice in your seasoning blend you’ll want to add more chili powder. You can also add chipotle powder or smoked chipotle powder for a bigger kick.
When to use DIY taco seasoning
Use it in place of your normal taco seasoning packs (like the McCormick taco seasoning) in recipes like our baked tacos, chicken taco casserole, or dorito casserole! Two – three tablespoons of our recipe is about the equivalent of one packet flavor-wise.
Other delicious Mexican inspired recipes
- Mexican corn salad
- Taco soup recipe
- Easy beef enchiladas
- Chicken tortilla soup
- See all our Mexican inspired recipes
More homemade seasonings to try
- Pumpkin pie spice recipe
- Chili seasoning recipe
- Homemade spice rub
- Soy ginger salmon marinade
- Flank steak marinade
- Lemon garlic lamb marinade
- Old bay shrimp marinade
- See all our seasoning recipes and spice blends!
Tools we love
- Glass spice jars – I love putting our homemade spice mixes in pretty glass jars.
- Bulk spices – It’s amazing how much money you can save by buying spices in bulk and making your own mixes!
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How to Make Taco Seasoning
- 2½ tablespoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- Add all the measured dried spices to a clean dry bowl.
- Then, mix thoroughly with a fork or a whisk, making sure to break up any clumps.
- Carefully pour spice blend into an airtight container.
- Store in a cool dry place until ready to use.
- This makes about ¼ cup of seasoning, the equivalent of about two packets of taco seasoning.
- 2 - 3 tablespoons of seasoning = 1 store bought packet.
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