I’ve never really liked tacos made with the pre-mixed taco seasoning. They always seemed dry and salty to me. You see, growing up, my mom would make us tacos using tomato sauce, chili powder and garlic salt. Simple but I think the tomato sauce brought a lot of flavor and moisture to the ground beef, however, it did lack some of the additional flavors of the pre-mixes.
So one day, I found this taco seasoning mix recipe on Smells Like Home and decided to give it a try. I had also recently discovered Penzeys Spices at this point so I was looking for an excuse to go load up on bulk spices. You see that store is like heaven for me – they have samples of all the spices in little glass jars that you can open up and smell. When I was a little kid, I loved to sit on the counter and open every single jar of spices in the cabinet and smell them. At Penzeys it’s suddenly ok for a grown-up to do this!
Anyway, back to tacos. I made this seasoning mix and instead of treating it like a normal pre-mix where you just add ground beef and water, I used my mom’s method of tomato sauce plus the seasoning. And we have a winner! I’ve even converted my mom to my homemade taco seasoning, (as long as I mix it up for her).
Here’s what you need to make it:
All you do is mix the spices together. Feel free to adjust the seasonings (especially the red pepper flakes) to your own taste. I store it in a glass jar with the recipe written on the back so it’s easy for me to whip up another batch. I found this one at Penzeys, it is the perfect size to fit one portion of this recipe.
Feel free to double or triple the batch when you make it. I recommend storing the extra in the freezer to keep the flavors fresh and vibrant.
I’ll post how I make the taco meat tomorrow.
- ¼ c ancho chili powder
- 1 t garlic powder
- ½-1-1/2 t crushed red pepper flakes (to taste – I use 1 t and it’s not too spicy)
- 2 t dried Mexican oregano
- 2 t paprika
- 2 T ground cumin
- 3 t kosher salt
- ½ t black pepper
- Mix all spices together and store in a glass jar. Use 2-2-1/2 T per pound of ground beef.