Homemade Taco Seasoning

Taco Spice SeasoningWho doesn’t like tacos? Tacos are one of the most versatile and forgiving dishes. You can make ’em healthy or indulgent (extra sour cream, anyone?). They help when you need to do a fridge clean-up and they can be made with any type of meat, fish or pulse. The only issue with tacos, however, is the neon orange pre-packaged taco mix that everyone seems to purchase.

I admit, I used to fall victim to the supposed convenience of the pre-packaged taco mix. However, it didn’t take me long to realize I could whip-up my own drool inducing spice mix that packs more punch and significantly less salt than anything the folks at Old El Paso could offer me. Honestly, the pre-packaged stuff is simply over priced salt and does not offer the same flavor complexity of the homemade alternative. My secret is to use fresh onions and tomato paste to add to the spices’ flavours for something truly unique yet satisfyingly familiar.

Homemade Taco Seasoning


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or more!)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 3/4 cups water


  • Brown ground beef and onion over medium high heat in frying pan and drain fat
  • Add remaining ingredients to frying pan, mix well and reduce over medium heat for roughly 20 minutes, stirring often
  • Spoon mixture into warmed tortillas or taco shells and top with all your favourite toppings!

Serves a family of 4, or 1 if you really, REALLY like tacos…

Homemade Taco Seasoning


  1. Markus Mueller

    I’m sure this spice mix would go great with a lot more then just tacos! O the possibility!

    • PeppersPennies

      A spice rub for BBQ chicken, maybe? In a cream cheese dip? May be a good base to an enchilada sauce, too (I’ll have to play around with that)!

      • Markus Mueller

        Now I’m hungry!! I think it may be time to break out the BBQ soon and try this spice mix!

  2. diversivore

    Well I do REALLY like tacos, but I think I could make this work for 4 and not just 1. I’m a sucker for homemade spice blends, so I’m really glad you posted this. Awesome work Amanda.

    • PeppersPennies

      Thanks, Sean! My husband and I cannot go out and enjoy tacos in restaurants anymore. This concoction has spoiled us for Mexican!

  3. I love the idea of using fresh onions and tomato paste. This sounds a lot healthier and especially tastier than the prepackaged stuff.

    • PeppersPennies

      You don’t feel as guilty layering on the cheese and sour cream with this recipe! I sometimes add jalapenos to the onions when the meat cooks to give it an extra kick! 🙂 Thanks for stopping by!

  4. I totally agree – homemade taco seasoning is so much better than overpriced salt. Especially because overpriced salt doesn’t even taste like salt. but it doesn’t taste like taco mix either. Definitely saving this seasoning for next taco night 🙂 Tacos!!

  5. I love making my our seasoning and tacos too! Thanks for sharing this recipe.

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