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DIY: Taco Seasoning Mix

homemade taco seasoning mix recipe
My taco seasoning mix recipe was born out of necessity. Years ago, I had started preparing dinner when I realized I didn’t have a packet of seasoning mix. I didn’t want to risk icy roads to buy one, so I made do with what I had on hand. I started smelling spices in my cupboard looking for ingredients. Once I identified the spices, I added them to my recipe, tasted, and added more spices until I achieved the desired results. The next time I went to the store, I looked at the back of a seasoning packet to see if I had forgotten anything.  The only things I had forgotten were the fillers and the excess salt.

Doing without store bought spice mixes is not much of a sacrifice. They may seem like a convenience, but you pay quite a bit to tear and pour spices that you probably already have in your cupboard. If you examine the cost they are probably one of the most expensive items per ounce that you buy. If you make a batch of seasoning mix in advance you can still enjoy the convenience, but for a fraction of the price.

One of the great things about making your own seasonings is that you can make it to suit your tastes. I prefer my taco seasoning with less heat and no extra salt ( Susan Warden emailed me to remind me that chili powder has some salt). Start by making a quarter batch and then alter to make it your own. Once you know exactly what you like, make a double or triple batch.

Taco Seasoning Mix
Recipe type: Spice Mix
Prep time: 
Total time: 
  • 4½ teaspoons chili powder
  • 4½ teaspoons cumin
  • 3 teaspoons paprika (I prefer smoked paprika)
  • 3 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1½ teaspoons onion powder
  • 1½ teaspoons dried, minced onion
  • 1 teaspoon dried cilantro
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  1. Mix all the ingredients together. Store in an airtight container.
  2. Since this recipe does not contain fillers and salt it is stronger than a store bought seasoning packet. I usually use 2 teaspoons per pound of meat.


Related Recipes:

Pumpkin Pie Spice Mix
Poultry Seasoning
Dry Onion Soup Mix

This post is linked to Kitchen Tip Tuesday and Frugal Tuesday Tip.

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About Alea Milham

Alea Milham is the owner and editor of Premeditated Leftovers. She shares her tips for saving money and time while reducing waste in her home. Her favorite hobby, gardening, is a frugal source of organic produce for her recipes. She believes it is possible to live fully and eat well while spending less.


  1. Hey Alea, I like the DIY taco mix idea. Reduce waste and spend less. By chance I did a post today on grilling and threw in my husband's homemade BBQ sauce recipe. Maybe it counts (a little bit) with your Monday DIY theme. :-)

  2. Alea Milham says:

    Grace, now I regret not doing a picture linky because your photos are so good!

  3. A Cooks Quest says:

    Hi Alea, I added my homestyle ranch mix that I use all the time. I started using it to get away from the store stuff and can't believe how much better it tastes. Thanks for the post, it reminds me to find alternatives to store mixes.

  4. Ah, I love this. I also agree the pre-packaged seasoning and super expensive! I just never thought to try out some spices in the cupboard until I got it right. I have bookmarked this post and will definitely return on a taco night. Thanks for posting!

  5. will look into the poultry seasoning recipe. so many good ideas, so little time.

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