Homemade Taco Seasoning

Looks even better than the store bought kind.

As I'm sure you've noticed by now, most of my homemade food is made because it costs less than store bought, and the ingredients are "pure" without the preservatives etc.  This taco seasoning was made for the exact same reason.

Now, if you ask my opinion, tacos just aren't the same without the seasoning.  It's all about the seasoning in my book.  Just plain beef?  Eww!  Chicken with no flavor?  Ick!!  So, just gotta add the perfect blend of ingredients, preferably not from a packet, a yippee, there ya have it, the perfect taco with just a few extra toppings!

I grew up with the "American style" of taco-eating, if you'd call it that.  Taco shell, refried beans, ground beef with seasoning, lettuce, salsa or tomatoes, a sprinkle of cheese and of course sour cream.  Today, I've tweaked the toppings to make it a bit healthier, but still enjoy eating something pretty similar to that.  I guess, it's true what they say, you never forget where you came from.

Seasoning before being mixed, look at all those colors!

Taco Seasoning
1/4 cup chili powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1/2 to 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
2 tsp dried oregano
2 tsp paprika
2 tbsp ground cumin
3 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp black pepper

Mix all ingredients together.  Store in airtight container.

To Use:
Once meat is browned, add 2 to 2 1/2 tablespoons of taco seasoning mix with meat to replace usual taco seasoning packet and 2 tsp cornstarch and 1 cup cold water.  Simmer on low until it has reached the desired thickness.

My "tweaks" to the recipe:
Instead of using crushed red pepper flakes, I actually used ground red pepper for fear of random hot bites with the flakes.  I love it with the ground red pepper!  I also try to use as little salt as possible.  So rather than using 3 tsp, I probably use more like 1/2 to 1 tsp.

I've also made this recipe a couple of times now, and the first time I added the 2 tbsp of cornstarch I felt it was too thick.  The last time I only added 1 tbsp of cornstarch, and it seemed as thick as it would typically be from a packet, but then again, it may be my preference.  You kind of have to tweak it to your liking.

PS - Do NOT forget the Oregano!!  I did once and it was SPICYYY!  Lesson learned, always read the recipe. :)

Source: Adapted from Smells Like Home

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