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Taco Seasoning (Homemade Recipe)

Spice up your culinary adventures with this homemade taco seasoning. With this recipe, you can whip up smoky, spicy taco seasoning for any meal you have in mind.

Crafting your own blend of spices is so much better than those store-bought packets. This seasoning will elevate your taco nights to new heights of flavor and freshness.

Different Spices for Homemade Taco Seasoning
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And it has so many other great uses in addition to tacos! It’s also delicious in casseroles, dips, fajitas, and more.

So, say goodbye to store-bought packets. Learn to make the freshest, most robust taco seasoning at home.

Taco Seasoning

You may wonder why you should make homemade taco seasoning. After all, you can pick up a pack at any grocery store.

But homemade seasoning has its benefits. First of all, it’s convenient. If you always have it on hand, you’ll be ready when a taco craving strikes.

Second, homemade seasoning allows you to tweak the ingredients.

Do you like it hotter than the store-bought stuff? No problem! Go a bit heavier on the cayenne. Do you adore cilantro? Add some!

Finally, you know what you’re getting with DIY taco seasoning. You make it entirely from fresh, pure ingredients. There are no fillers or GMOs.

And that, my friends, is why I prefer to make my own taco seasoning most of the time.

Mixed Spices for Taco Seasoning


You’ll find everything you need for this recipe in your spice rack.

  • Chili powder – Chili powder makes up the bulk of the seasoning, so be sure to use a fresh, high-quality brand!
  • Ground cumin – Cumin adds a delightful smokiness.
  • Salt & pepper – I like to use sea salt instead of regular table salt. Ground black pepper is fine.
  • Ground paprika – Some people use smoked paprika. However, I think the cumin provides enough smokiness. That’s why I always use regular paprika.
  • Garlic & onion powders – I haven’t found a seasoning blend yet that didn’t taste better with garlic and onion powder.
  • Cayenne pepper – Cayenne brings the heat. Use more or less of it to suit your spice tolerance.
  • Dried oregano – If you can find Mexican oregano, that works best.

How to Make Taco Seasoning

There’s only one step to making taco seasoning: mix. However, if you want to break it down a little further, you could say there are three steps:

1. Measure. Measure out the correct amounts of all your ingredients.

2. Mix. Combine them in a small bowl.

3. Store. Store the seasoning in an air-tight container for freshness.

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Beef Taco Casserole with Beans, Corn and Lime on a Plate


This seasoning tastes fantastic, just the way it is. But here are a few variations you can try if you want to tweak the flavor:

  • Add cilantro leaves. You can buy these in dried form in the spice aisle. I don’t recommend adding fresh cilantro to an otherwise dry mix.
  • Dial down the sodium. Leave out the salt entirely, or use less of it.
  • Adjust the heat levels. Leave out the cayenne if you want a completely mild taco seasoning. Add more cayenne or red pepper flakes to the mix for hotter seasoning. Mexican hot chili pepper will also dial up the heat.
  • Make it cheesy. Add a teaspoon of powdered Parmesan to the mixture for a cheesy finish. Only add cheese if you plan to use the seasoning mix right away. Don’t use it if you plan to make a big batch to store.

Finally, make any adjustments you see fit. This is your taco seasoning, after all. Play with the recipe until you come up with something perfect.

Ways to Use Taco Seasoning

The obvious way to use taco seasoning is to season the meat for your tacos. (Check out my article 30 Taco Recipes Everyone Will Love for some great taco ideas.)

However, you can also use it to flavor soups and stews or add it to casseroles and dips!

Here are a few of my favorite recipes that benefit from DIY taco seasoning:

(Unless otherwise noted, use 2 tablespoons of this taco seasoning instead of the taco seasoning packet.)

Meaty Beef Tacos with Lettuce and Tomatoes

How Much Homemade Taco Seasoning Equals One Packet?

One store-bought packet of taco seasoning usually contains about 28 grams of seasoning. That’s just shy of 2 tablespoons.

So, when your recipe mentions a packet of taco seasoning, you should use about 2 tablespoons of this mix.

How Long Does Taco Seasoning Last?

Taco seasoning will last about 6 months if you store it correctly, assuming you use fresh spices.

If your garlic or oregano was weak when you made the seasoning, it won’t last as long.

How to Store

Store homemade taco seasoning in clean jelly jars or another air-tight container. Place the container somewhere dark, cool, and dry. (Your cupboard or pantry should work just fine.)

As mentioned, the seasoning should last up to 6 months if you keep it sealed tightly. Because it keeps so long, making a large batch all at once is a good idea.

As written, this recipe yields about 2 tablespoons worth of seasoning. A typical jelly jar is about 4 ounces. So, you could quadruple this recipe and have enough to fill one jelly jar.

Taco Seasoning (Homemade Recipe)




Once you make homemade taco seasoning, you’ll never buy store-bought again! This blend of spices is sure to brighten up any meal!


  • 1 tablespoon chili powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground paprika

  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder

  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano


  • Combine the chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, and oregano in a small bowl.
  • Store it in an air-tight container for up to 6 months.


  • This seasoning isn’t just for tacos! Use it to flavor soups, stews, casseroles, dips, you name it.
Taco Seasoning

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author avatar
NaTaya Hastings
NaTaya Hastings is a food and recipe writer for Good Recipes. She’s an educator, boy mom, dog mom, and whatever-stray-enters-the-yard mom. As a result, she's constantly cooking for both humans and animals.

Luckily, she enjoys it!

Though born, raised, and still living in Alabama, her specialty is NOT down-home Southern cooking. Instead, she loves to experiment with Asian, Mexican, Italian, and other ethnic cuisines. She has two mottos when it comes to cooking. “The more spice, the better!” and “There’s no such thing as too much garlic!”

She’s also pretty good with desserts. Especially the easy, no-bake ones.

Her favorite things are cuddling with her four giant dogs, traveling, reading, writing, and hanging out in nature. She’s also pretty excellent at Dominoes.

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