Homemade Chili and Taco Seasoning

Do you ever find yourself in the middle of cooking dinner and realize that you’re out of a key ingredient? This happened to me about three years ago when I was in the middle of making a huge pot of chili. After searching my pantry for a nonexistent envelope of chili seasoning, I had to improvise. Turns out this moment of annoyance created a spice cabinet must have.

After a quick visit to Google, I realized that I could make my own chili seasoning and it worked out beautifully. I was able to control the level of heat and the salt content from making my own spice mix and my chili wound up being incredibly flavorful. This homemade chili seasoning recipe wound up being so good,  I ended up making a large batch of it and storing it in my spice cabinet.

This simple chili seasoning turned into a multipurpose spice blend that now flavors most of my Mexican inspired dishes. Everything from homemade tacos to roasted potatoes can be enhanced with this easy to make homemade seasoning blend. Moral of the story? Sometimes a kitchen conundrum can turn into something quite splendid.

Stay tuned later in the week for my favorite chili recipe, trust me, it’s delicious and will be the perfect last minute addition to your Super Bowl Spread!

Homemade Taco and Chili Seasoning

Yield: about 2/3 cup

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes


  • 4 tablespoons of chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 3 teaspoons sea salt
  • 4 teaspoons black pepper


  1. In a medium bowl, combine chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, crushed red pepper flakes, cayenne pepper, oregano, paprika, ground cumin, sea salt, and black pepper.
  2. Store in an air tight container at room temperature.


  • Stored in an airtight container, this spice blend will keep for up to a year.
  • When making chili or tacos using one pound of ground beef, start with 1 1/2 tablespoons of the seasoning blend and adjust according to your tastes.

87 Responses to “Homemade Chili and Taco Seasoning”

  1. Michael — September 30, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    I hate to be a jerk, but there is HUGE a problem here. What you have done is taken store bought chili powder, add the EXACT ingredients required to make chili powder and then add salt & pepper.

    OMIT the chili powder, double all the ingredients other than salt & pepper, then add the salt & pepper in the original recipe amounts and you have your own chili powder recipe.
    This adjusted recipe actually works without all the excess cost of the store bought chili powder!
    Sorry, but redundancy is just wasted time and money. Best.


  2. SC — March 12, 2016 at 11:48 am

    @Michael you might be confused.  What you buy from the store in packets is chili seasoning, and that is what this recipe makes.  You can get chili powder (which contains ground up chili peppers) on the spices aisle, and that is what this recipe calls for as an ingredient – not the seasoning packets.  Hope that cleared up the confusion. 
    Wikipedia does say that chili powder is sometimes the name used for blends of seasonings including chili powder, so that may be the cause of confusion. 


  3. claudia callahan — May 4, 2016 at 5:52 pm

    How much of this mixture do you use per chili recipe?


    • Jamie — May 5, 2016 at 9:44 am

      I usually start with about 1 1/2 tablespoons and add more as needed. I hope this helps.

  4. Jamie C — May 18, 2016 at 6:42 am

    Hi there,

    Just found this recipe yesterday. I used it last night for turkey fajitas and it was perfect. Thank you for this. However, I could only get onion salt and garlic salt and not powder so I adapted it to from 3 to 1 teaspoon of sea salt. No more shop bought chilli mixes for me. 


    • Jamie — May 18, 2016 at 1:26 pm

      I’m so glad it worked out for you, Jamie!

  5. Jamie C — May 18, 2016 at 6:45 am

    Oh and I added 1 teaspoon of ground coriander too. Just my preference. 


    • Jamie — May 18, 2016 at 1:27 pm

      That sounds like a great addition to me!

  6. Kelly — June 23, 2016 at 8:31 pm

    I tried this today as it was chili night and I couldn’t find my little packet. It is soooo good! so glad I found this, now I’m saving and using instead of buying!


    • Jamie — June 24, 2016 at 6:52 am

      I’m so glad you liked it, Kelly!

  7. annie — July 21, 2016 at 2:06 pm

    @SC, sorry but you’re the one who’s confused. Michael is saying that “chili powder” you buy in the spice aisle already has cumin, garlic, oregano and maybe other stuff in it. It’s better to combine different “chile” powders with your own seasonings.


  8. Paula — September 26, 2016 at 10:23 am

    This is the chili powder I use in your recipe and it is delicious (no fillers or mystery stuff):

    Thank you so much for your recipe- it’s a keeper.


    • Jamie — September 30, 2016 at 10:59 am

      Thank you for your chili powder suggestion, Paula! I’m so glad you like the recipe!

  9. Linda — November 6, 2016 at 7:55 am

    Annie — Sorry again, but you’re actually the one who is confused. You just repeated Michael’s mistake. There is such a thing as chili seasoning, which does contain the ingredients you mentioned, and there is such a thing as chili powder which does NOT contain the other ingredients, but is just ground chiles.

    This recipe does not contain the seasoning as an ingredient — it replaces the seasoning.


  10. Robin Brown — November 28, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    Excellent recipe! Will be using over and over again in our chili.


    • Jamie — November 29, 2016 at 2:06 pm

      Wonderful, Robin! I’m so glad you enjoyed it!

  11. Ray Rowe — December 10, 2016 at 10:14 pm

    What make off chili powder is just grounded chilies everything I’ve seen has all other ingredients in it?


    • Jamie — December 12, 2016 at 2:35 pm

      Hi, Ray! I’m not entirely sure I understand your question, but you can use whatever kind of chili powder you like. Let me know if I can help with anything else!

  12. Sheila — December 18, 2016 at 7:16 pm


    I stumbled upon your recipe after realizing there was no more of the usual pre made chili packets I use. I had most of the spices already on hand thankfully! Did a taste test just now and even my picky 6 year old aproves lol. 

    Thank you for the recipe, it saved this dinner! :)


    • Jamie — December 19, 2016 at 3:42 pm

      When I please a 6 year old, Sheila, I feel like my job is worthwhile! I’m so glad to save dinner. Enjoy!

  13. Peter — January 8, 2017 at 1:21 pm

    I used this recipe due to my Wife’s Gluten Allergy for the first time and will use it again. This recipe is better than what is pre packaged.


    • Jamie — January 9, 2017 at 11:41 am

      Thank you, Peter!

  14. Mick — March 22, 2017 at 10:14 pm

    I actually added the whole mixture (sounds like a lot, it’s not) to a huge pot of chili I made. consisted of

    1 large white onion
    one large green pepper
    2 cloves of garlic minced
    1 can of diced tomoatos (not drained)
    1 can tomato paste
    1 can of tomato sauce
    1 can of kidney beans
    1 can of chick peas
    1.5 pounds of ground beef

    let simmer for about 1 hour and had it with rice

    it turned out amazing and was a crowd pleasure.


    • Jamie — March 23, 2017 at 12:57 pm

      Great, Mick!

  15. Kyradog — May 20, 2017 at 8:46 pm

    Michael and Annie made valid points, though I don’t think Michael understood the difference between prepackaged chilli seasoning such as Old El Paso, French’s etc… and basic chilli powder. Nor do you for that matter. Chilli powder is not JUST a blend of ground chillies. EVERY major spice retailer, IE: ClubHouse, McKormick’s etc … use a blend of ingredients to make chilli powder over and above just ground peppers!
    Looking at my chilli powder under Safeway’s own label from their spice rack I read: chilli pepper, cumin, salt, oregano, garlic, silicon dioxide. The package of No Name generic powder I have lists that with the addition of coriander and cloves without SiOx. Perhaps you should visit the spice aisle and read the ingredient list on those jars of chilli powder and offer an apology. If you’ve been buying your spices and herbs in bulk then you probably wont see an ingredient list. Sorry to be a real jerk but you were so certain of yourself in shutting down Michael and Annie. I only stumbled on your page to find the correct proportion of other ingredients to add to my chilli powder to replicate the French’s Chilli-O seasoning packet I forgot to buy earlier when I was out and this just set me off.


    • Jamie — May 22, 2017 at 6:51 am

      I appreciate your feedback!

  16. Sharla — June 1, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    Jamie, you are very patient! I just made this and it’s very good.


    • Jamie — June 1, 2017 at 3:47 pm

      Thank you, Sharla! I’m so glad you liked it!

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