How Much Homemade Taco Seasoning Do You Need for 1 Pound of Ground Beef?

Tacos are a quick, easy, and tasty weeknight dinner. But buying those little packets of taco seasoning from the store can get expensive. Luckily, it’s easy to make your own homemade taco seasoning from common spices and pantry ingredients. But how much homemade seasoning do you actually need for 1 pound of ground beef? Let’s break it down.

Typical Taco Seasoning Packet Size

First, it helps to understand how much taco seasoning comes in a typical store-bought packet. Most commercial taco seasoning packets contain around 1-1.5 ounces or about 2-3 tablespoons of seasoning mix. This is the pre-measured amount designed to flavor 1 pound of ground beef or protein.

So when making homemade taco seasoning to replace packets, you’ll want to make about 2-3 tablespoons worth of seasoning blend for each pound of meat.

Homemade Taco Seasoning Ingredients

A basic homemade taco seasoning recipe includes spices like

  • Chili powder
  • Cumin
  • Paprika
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Oregano
  • Salt
  • Pepper

You can also add extras like cayenne pepper, coriander, or red pepper flakes. Combine the spices to equal about 2-3 tablespoons total.

How to Use Homemade Taco Seasoning

To use homemade taco seasoning

  1. Brown 1 pound of ground beef and drain fat

  2. Add 2-3 tablespoons of seasoning blend.

  3. Stir in 1/4 cup water.

  4. Simmer for 5 minutes until thickened.

This allows the spices to evenly coat the meat and become absorbed in the moisture. Then it’s ready for tacos!

Adjusting Homemade Taco Seasoning to Taste

One of the benefits of making your own taco seasoning is customize the flavor. Want it spicier? Add extra cayenne or chili powder. Don’t like cumin? Leave it out.

Start with less seasoning and add more to taste. You can always amp up the flavor, but you can’t take it away once over-seasoned.

Make a Big Batch for Meal Prep

Consider making a big batch of homemade taco seasoning to have on hand for easy dinner prep.

For a one quart jar, mix together:

  • 1 cup chili powder
  • 1/4 cup cumin
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon each garlic powder, onion powder, oregano
  • 2 teaspoons each salt and pepper

This makes about 2 cups, enough for 8-10 pounds of ground beef. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

Now you’ll always have taco seasoning ready when taco night calls!

Other Uses for Homemade Taco Seasoning

While perfect in tacos, homemade taco seasoning has many uses:

  • Chili
  • Nachos
  • Fajitas
  • Burritos
  • Quesadillas
  • Rice or veggie bowls
  • Casseroles
  • Soups and chilis

Anywhere you want a Tex-Mex kick of flavor, this versatile spice blend does the job deliciously.

Make Tacos More Healthy

While tasty, tacos made with highly seasoned beef and cheese-laden shells can be heavy. Try these healthier ideas:

  • Use lean ground turkey or chicken instead of beef

  • Swap soft shells for crunchy taco salads

  • Load up on veggies like lettuce, tomatoes, peppers

  • Use just a sprinkle of cheese rather than heaping portions

  • Salsa, guacamole, and Greek yogurt make great toppings

With smart tweaks, tacos can be a balanced and wholesome family favorite.

Save Money with Homemade

Taco seasoning packets may seem cheap but costs add up. Making your own only takes a few basic spices that you likely have already.

And purchasing larger containers of spices is cheaper in the long run compared to small packs. With just a bit of prep work, you can flavor pounds of ground beef for pennies.

When making homemade taco seasoning to replace store-bought packets, the general rule of thumb is 2-3 tablespoons of spice blend per pound of ground beef.

This provides the same amount of flavoring as commercial mixes. Follow basic seasoning instructions to allow the spices to properly permeate the meat before serving.

With the ability to customize flavors and save money, homemade taco seasoning is a winner. Keep a batch in the pantry for effortless Tex-Mex meals any night of the week.

Quick & Easy Homemade Taco Seasoning


How much taco seasoning to use for 1 pound of meat?

Freshly made taco seasoning, without msg and preservatives, tastes so much better. Use about 2 tablespoons of seasoning per pound of ground meat for tacos.

How many tacos will 1 pound of ground beef make?

Each taco shell or small soft taco-size tortilla fits about 2 ounces or 1/4 cup of meat. If you add diced onions, you could stretch a pound of ground beef to make about a dozen tacos. With just the meat and spices, you can make about 8 tacos from a pound of meat.

How much seasoning per pound of beef?

At the very least, you should add about one tablespoon of meat seasoning for every pound of meat. Apply the dry rub evenly so that every mouth has flavor. For the perfect steak, make sure to use beef seasoning.

What can I use if I don’t have taco seasoning?

Chili powder and cumin: This is a simple but effective substitute for taco seasoning. Simply combine equal parts chili powder and cumin in a bowl. You can also add other spices to your liking, such as garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and oregano.

How much taco seasoning do you put in a pound?

Use 2 tablespoons of taco seasoning per pound of ground beef or ground turkey. To make taco meat, first brown the ground meat in a large skillet. Then add the taco seasoning and 1/2 cup of water. I also like to add 1/2 cup of canned tomato sauce for added moisture and flavor, but this is optional.

How much taco seasoning do you add to ground beef?

Add 2 tablespoons of taco seasoning to the ground beef along with 1/2 cup of water. Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation. Tried this recipe?

How many tablespoons of taco seasoning in a packet?

Typically 2 Tablespoons of homemade taco seasoning is equal to 1 packet of storebought seasoning. In addition to using taco seasoning for Taco Recipes, you can use it for: Ground Beef – for a pound of ground beef, add two tablespoons of this seasoning, along with 1/2 cup of water. This seasoned ground beef is great for Taco Salad.

How do you make the best taco meat?

Use this homemade taco seasoning to make the BEST taco meat. Brown 1 pound of ground beef, breaking it up while cooking, cook until it’s no longer pink. Stir in the taco seasoning. A lot of recipes say to use water when mixing a taco seasoning with the ground beef. Personally, I love to use about 1/2 a cup of tomato sauce.

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