taco seasoning from scratch
I'm cooking for a group with numerous food allergies on Sunday and need a taco seasoning that is gluten (wheat), dairy, and egg free. McCormicks (my normal standby) has whey (milk) and I think I'm going to have to make my own. What all goes in? Cumin, I'm sure of, but what else? I figured seasoned ground beef and/or chicken, corn tortillas and flour ones for those that can have, and numerous toppings will make a feast for all. Thanks!
I use the following, and just add to taste: ground cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika, chili powder and habanera powder if you can take the heat. Salt to taste.
This may be heresy in terms of taco meat, and the other posts have all the right ingredients, I like to cook my taco meat in a 'slow' cooker that cooks more like stove top, I just don't have to pay attention. In other words, I like to simmer the ground beef and seasonings until it softens and absorbs all the lovely flavors. Cumin, oregano, onion (which I briefly saute or don't depending on time), garlic and chilies or even a bit of El Patio...well...check the label...I also brown the meat. I kind of treat my taco meat like a stew in a way, assuming, right or wrong, that a simmer will allow flavors to absorb and make tender.
I no longer buy spice packets now that I have the following:
Taco Seasoning Blend
ONION, DRIED MINCED, 2 T
CHILI POWDER, 4 t
SALT, 2 t
GARLIC POWDER, 2 t
CORNSTARCH, 2 t
CUMIN, 2 t ground
CAYENNE PEPPER, 1 t (OR HOT PAPRIKA)
PAPRIKA, 1 1 t hot (OR CAYENNE)
Combine all ingredients, and stir to blend. Makes the equivalent of two 1 1/4-ounce packages of taco seasoning mix. To make Taco Filling: brown 2 lbs lean ground beef in large skillet over medium heat; drain grease. Add 1 C water and Taco Seasoning Blend. Reduce heat, cover pan, and simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. If watery, remove cover and reduce. Makes enough filling for 16 to 20 tacos. One could also stir in 1 14.5 oz can of refried beans for burrito filling. Spicier than standard taco seasoning; halve cayenne/hot paprika if you prefer it milder.
All commercial taco seasonings have some form of msg. Make sure to include it if you're looking for that 'authentic' taste.