The beauty of this simple, homemade taco seasoning recipe is that it is highly adaptable. I will add about 1 tablespoon to ground beef for a delicious mild effect or 3 tablespoons to ground beef for a “hotter” more distinct flavor. We use this in our 7-Can Taco Soup and Taco Dip appetizer!

So much better than store bought. You get to control the heat!
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Taco Seasoning

Our preference for tacos is just about as conservative as it gets! Seasoned ground beef, beans, cheese, tomatoes, onions, lettuce, and shells. We love this combination so much that we eat it at least once a week. 🙂  Feel free to spice it up to your preference, add some sour cream, jalapenos, black olives, taco sauce, or some crunchy shells.  That is why tacos are so popular at our house.  Each meal can be a little bit different.

Homemade Taco Seasoning

I like to use organic canned beans and mash them right in the pan for our refried beans. Everyone seems to like the extra texture! Homemade taco seasoning is a great way to know exactly what you are eating and to control the “temperature” of your hamburger.

One last thing, you can make a big batch even if you don’t make tacos that often.  Ours lasts us a few months, the dried spices store well.  Just make sure you give the mixture a good shake before you use it again.  The heavier spices like to settle.

Why make your own seasoning blends?

We love to use the freshest ingredients when I make any of my pre-made seasonings, but there are a number of other reasons it is beneficial to make your own seasoning mixes at home.

Save Money – It’s a lot cheaper to make your own seasoning blends, all you are basically doing is mixing them together.  More than likely, you already own everything you need.

Avoid Toxins – Most spice blends contain chemicals that you wouldn’t know about unless you specifically read the label.  Their primary purpose is to keep the blends from getting lumpy but do not change the flavor.

Adjust to Personal Preference – Like it a little spicier?  Use more red pepper or add some cayenne.  Have a dietary restriction? You can avoid or swap in spices that work with your food plan.

Where can I use this homemade taco seasoning recipe?

You can use this taco seasoning for other things as well.  Consider using this taco seasoning recipe on chicken for chicken tacos, and in cream cheese for the world’s BEST Taco Dip.  We also use it in 7 can chicken taco soup as well as slow cooker chicken taco soup and chicken tortilla casserole.  There are so many different ways you can modify and use this for your own family.  Be sure to comment and let me know how you use this homemade taco seasoning recipe in your home!

More Seasonings

So much better than store bought. You get to control the heat!
5 from 3 votes

Homemade Taco Seasoning

Prep Time 5 minutes
From scratch homemade taco seasoning is a great way to know exactly what you are eating and to control the “temperature” of your meal.


  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper


  • Add all ingredients to a bowl and stir with a fork or whisk until fully incorporated. 
  • Store in an airtight container. (3 tablespoons of this mix equals one packet of store bought seasoning.)

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Reader Comments

  1. Have you tried making this with your own chili powder? The only ingredient that isn’t already in your taco seasoning is cayenne pepper. Otherwise it is just more paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, oregano and cumin.

  2. Thought I’d mention a couple more uses for taco seasoning. I use it to make ground chicken based tacos and for chicken fajitas. For the tacos I just sub cooked ground chicken. With the fajitas, I season the raw, sliced chicken and the onions and bell peppers with taco seasoning. It is almost identical to fajita seasoning. Easy peasy!

  3. Hey Amanda, do you add water at the end to bring it all together like the packets ask for? I’ve been using the Cooks Illustrated recipe for ground beef tacos for years, but I do use packets occasionally.

  4. 5 stars
    I’ve made this recipe but without the onion powder as my British husband has fatal reaction to ALL onion stuff, leeks, chives, anything from the onion family. I now live in England as of 3 years ago and it’s been a bit hard to find “American” substitutes for things, but he turned me onto a spice called Asafetida. And it totally does the job of onion powder for this and so far, all the other recipes calling for onion powder.

    Here is the dictionary explanation of it:
    “Asafoetida, also known as asafetida and hing, is a staple ingredient in Indian cooking and most commonly used in vegetarian recipes. It’s pungent smell can make this powder seem off-putting, but rest assured it dissipates while cooking, bringing a full, savory flavor to foods,”

    This has been a miracle for people like me that love the flavor of onions, I can sprinkle this into foods, and have that same savory yumminess of onion, without the worry of my husband becoming sick or worse.

    1. You can get asafetida at Indian grocery stores. Store it in a sealed jar. The smell is pretty bad and will permeate your pantry in no time! But it is an awesome spice….

    1. 5 stars
      That’s what I did. I store it in a quart jar in the cupboard. Just used it this weekend for tacos and bean dip. It is great.

  5. These are all the ingredients I use ( except cinnamon ) After I brown the Hamburger and drain it, I put a can of Pinto Beans and a medium sweet Onion in the food processor and get it like lumpy gravy, then I mix it in with the Hamburger. I add a half a Bell pepper chopped, one Tomato chopped, Garlic salt, Red Pepper Flakes, and chili powder. It only needs to simmer 5 to 10 minutes. I not only use this for Tacos, but it is great for Burritos also. It is so delicious that I sometimes just eat it like chili. Mixing Hamburger and Pinto Beans create a flavor that cant be beat. Just remember to salt and pepper it because Pinto Beans need the salt to bring out its flavor.

  6. Could you use this taco seasoning in place of the chilli seasoning in your grandmother’s chili recipe? Or is there a grand difference between chilli and taco seasoning? (I’m Australian)

5 from 3 votes (1 rating without comment)

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