The Best Ground Beef Tacos

Tacos are a family favorite around here.

I can always tell when I’ve been experimenting with too many new recipes. My family will turn their long faces toward me and plead “can we please just have tacos tonight?”

That’s my cue that we need to go back to the basics for a while.

These homemade tacos really are the best-ever.

Ditch the prepackaged taco seasoning, because you won’t need it here. The meat is flavorful and perfectly spiced!

We love these. Best tacos ever, really.

What To ServeFresh fruit, or this Honey Lime Fruit Salad
Mexican Rice

The Best Ground Beef Tacos

Yield: Serves 4-6

The Best Ground Beef Tacos


  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 pound ground beef or ground turkey
  • 1 to 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and minced fine (alternately, you can add hot pepper sauce to taste or canned jalapenos OR just leave out the heat altogether, although I think the meat really needs a little kick and adding the jalapeno without seeds didn't make the dish overly spicy)
  • Taco shells
  • Additional taco garnishes


  1. In a large skillet over medium heat, add the oil and chopped onion. Cook, stirring often, until the onion is softened, about 4-5 minutes. Add the ground beef and cook, breaking up the meat into smaller chunks, until it is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Off the heat, drain the grease from the meat.
  2. Return the skillet to the heat and stir in the garlic, chili powder, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper. Cook for about 30 seconds and then add the tomato sauce and jalapeno. Turn the heat to low and simmer the meat mixture for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve in taco shells with your choice of toppings.

Recipe Source: adapted from the Joy of Cooking

127 Responses to The Best Ground Beef Tacos

  1. Cami Mortensen says:

    Mel, I am a friend of your Aunt Laurie’s. I am just wondering if you know what was hurting the tummies out of the Taco Seasoning Packet? It would be helpful to know! Thanks.

    • Mel says:

      Hi Cami – to be honest, I’m not entirely sure. It’s been so long since we’ve used the taco seasoning packets that I haven’t really analyzed the ingredients. I don’t know if it was the combination of spices or something else. Sorry I’m not more helpful!

  2. Katt says:

    this was very good – thank you 🙂

    I used a serrano pepper (wow).

  3. Katherine says:

    I use this recipe all. the. time. It is wonderfull! I made it for my mom (who has cooked for years but has always used seasoning packets for tacos) and she couldn’t believe the flavor! My husband loves it too. This is a serious winner! Thanks so much!!!

  4. Arlene Colasurdo says:

    Will never go back to pre-packaged seasoning after this! I have been making this recipie for my family for about six months now and it never fails to impress. Kids love it and so does my husband. I love it because the flavor is all there without pre-packaged ingredients.

  5. Clark says:

    I tried these on a whim a few months back, but made burritos out of the mixture instead of tacos.

    My roommates keep demanding I make them and it’s been a 2-3 times a month type of deal since then.

    I find it’s also quite good with a bit of curtido to use as filling as well.

    Cheers for the recipe.

  6. Stephanie says:

    Hi Mel, I’m making these tonight for dinner using ground turkey. Quick question – the recipe says serves 4-6. What do you count as a serving? Enough meat for 2 tacos? Thank you!

    • Mel says:

      I don’t know how many tacos specifically – but this recipe feeds my family of 7 (five kids and two adults). It kind of depends on how much meat goes in each taco shell but there’s probably enough for 12 average-sized tacos.

  7. Diane says:

    Excellent recipe. My husband and I really loved it. When I was making it, it seemed like a lot of seasoning and I was worried it would be too strong tasting, but it wasn’t at all. It’s a keeper. Thank you!

  8. Steven says:

    I just made this recipe for dinner last night. Best tacos to ever come out of my kitchen. Definitely my go-to taco recipe!

  9. Carol says:

    This “seasoned” beef recipe instead of a salty mess of a packet is just want I wanted due to low sodium restrictions. Thanks for the great recipe, Mel!

  10. Sharon says:

    I’ve been making tacos for years and always wonder why they’re never as tasty as I think they should be. Then I tried this recipe – and it was a hit! Even my picky 3 and 5 yr old couldn’t get enough. That is the best kind of success. Wish I had tried this recipe sooner but it’s definitely in the regular round-up now. Thanks for all the fantastic recipes!

  11. Trisha says:

    This taco meat is amazing! Thank you for the recipe!

  12. Mel Hilgenberg says:

    Mel, Do you sell T shirts ?

  13. Jessica S. says:

    I tried this recipe out last week and it was an absolute hit! The beef mixture was so flavorful 🙂 I did tacos for dinner and used the filling to make a salad for work! I added black beans to the mixture which made it even more filling. Thanks for a great recipe! 🙂

  14. Jessica says:

    This is a great recipe, I make it all of the time. It takes 15-20 minutes, great for a week night. Thanks for a recipe that’s become one of my favorites!

  15. We have been trying your cookie recipes (lemon bars tomorrow) and now I want to make your tacos. My favorite recipe is:
    Thanks so much for having such a wonderful site. It is so fun to share recipes with a kindred cook.

  16. Jessica says:

    These were awesome! And so easy. My daughter doesn’t do tacos so I had her help me make a quesadilla with the meat. Thanks for another great meal!

  17. Amber says:

    So I know you posted this like 6 or 7 years ago but I don’t care about leaving comments on old posts. This recipe is new to me so whateves. I was on a long taco strike because sooooo many taco recipes are gross. I tried this one on whim. “The best you say? Ok I’ll try it”…and it changed our dinners forever. We now eat tacos all the time. I made them for my sister last Friday and she called me yesterday while at the grocery store requesting the recipe because she said “Those tacos where life changing”. You weren’t kidding, they are the BEST ground beef tacos. Thanks for a stellar recipe!

  18. Aubree says:

    Hello Mel!

    I stumbled upon your site when searching ‘best taco recipe’ on the web, so glad I did! I am a newbie in the kitchen and this was amazingly delicious and easy. I am beyond excited to start making all of your recipes! I want to thank you for such a great website and user friendly recipes. You make it easy to follow from start to finish, not to mention how great the kitchen tips page is for a new cook!

    Thanks again 🙂

  19. Shannon says:

    Hey Mel thank you so much for sharing this recipe. I am a vegetarian and I used to use the packaged sauce mix (the wet kind and dry) and I hated all of the weird ingredients and one even had anchovies in it. I love that it is made with stuff I always have on hand and is so easy and cheap to make! I just used some Morningstar Farms crumbs in place of the meat. My husband loves how spicy it is too. Thanks again.

  20. ahsan says:

    I think ground beef tacos are an awesome thing..its a nyc thing to start your day with..doing can check this out for a good recipe..Ground Beef Tacos

  21. Ben says:

    You MUST buy the cumin and coriander as whole seeds and toast and grind yourself. This makes a world of difference.

  22. Ryger says:

    This is a pretty good recipe, definitely one of the best I’ve come across. Changes I made:

    -6oz of tomato paste (standard can size) instead of 8oz. Made it with both amounts and tasted pretty much the same regardless
    -Paleo friendly: coconut oil instead of canola oil, and in place of corn/flour shells, create wraps out of bibb lettuce or another large leafed green.
    -I ground the cumin/coriander from whole seeds. Much more flavor over pre-ground
    -1/2 tsp of red pepper flakes, if you like spicy tacos.

  23. STEVEN STAHL says:

    i use this recipe every time. i used to buy the package stuff; not any more. i was never completely satisfied with their taste. not so with this recipe. sooo glad i found it. thx

  24. shiela says:

    Wow this was a hit! Wow now I love tacos more! My bf enjoyed it we couldn’t stop eating hahah!

    Kudos to you!


  25. Melanese says:

    Googled taco recipe ground beef and this came up. Noticed its 6 years to the day. You’re obviously doing something right. Thanks for the recipe. Melanese

  26. Tom says:

    First ever comment, but had to do this. Made this last night for tacos with a few modifications (salsa instead of tomato sauce, bit of extra spices, and it was great. We had a fair bit of left-overs, so this morning I threw in a cup of salsa, the left-over tomatoes & sliced mushrooms, a cup of beef broth & 2 cups of cooked rice. Slow cooker on low for 6 hours and voila! a wonderful chili needing only a good buttermilk cornbread for a quick, delicious dinner. Thank you for the great recipe!!

  27. […] recipe would also work great with leftover taco or sloppy joe […]

  28. Pamela says:

    We just had these tacos for dinner tonight. Everyone loved them, they were the perfect spice combo. The only changes I made was to skip the oil and onion, I just tossed dehydrated onions into my hamburger as it browned and I swapped out the jalapenos for a pinch of red pepper flakes to add a bit of heat. YUM

  29. […] recipe for the beef seasoning is from the blog Mel’s Kitchen Cafe which is such a good site because her recipes consistently turn out the way they’re supposed […]

  30. Thuy says:

    I made this with guacamole and layered it with sour cream and it was delish! Could not have enough. Is it okay if I link this page and post the recipe on my blog?

    • Mel says:

      Thuy – Sure, as long as you include a full, clearly viewable link back to the recipe, which it sounds like you are doing. Thank you for asking permission. I am glad you liked it.

  31. Nadia says:

    This is really really tasty and so so simple! I normally swear by Lawry’s but I think I’m officially done! Great recipe 🙂

  32. Mia says:

    This is the best beef taco recipe I’ve ever made. Thank you Mel! I use at least one of your recipes every week!

  33. Jenn says:

    I made this last night and my kids gobbled it up! I’ve been avoiding the packets of seasoning in favor of making my own however mine lacked the ground coriander which in my opinion really makes this recipe shine. I’ve already made up a batch of the dry ingredients to keep on hand for different uses. I made up a marinade of the spice mix with oil and lime juice, rubbed over chicken to grill. I intend to use it on the chopped taco salad in place of ground meat.

  34. Luke says:

    great simple recipe. if the flavor is a bit flat, try addind a teaspoon or two soft brown sugar to add body. let it cook out for another 5min after adding. you wont be dissapointed

  35. Cecilia Merc says:

    Great recipe. Instant hit with my hubby. Definitely a new favorite for us!

  36. Lisa says:

    To make chicken faihtas used all your spices except for the tomato sauce. And it turned out awesome.

  37. Melody Susan says:

    Yum. i always try to avoid processed foods and packets of anything. I know people have been making tacos for years before everything went convenience, I’ve been trying to perfect my own formula. Luckily for me, you have already done it. Delicious. I used ground chicken breast in my recipe.

  38. […] am going to keep the spirit of the day and make some delicious tacos for dinner. This recipe sounds amazing! I have been getting really into cooking lately. I have had  a lot of culinary […]

  39. Melissa says:

    This was so yummy!! I’ll never use taco seasoning again!!

  40. Kalah says:

    Tonight will be my first attempt at this recipe. I’m very excited!! I have made tacos with and without packaged seasoning and I have to admit my family has not ever experienced any issues but I love the idea of just using what is already in my pantry and knowing exactly what is going in our food.

  41. Ali says:

    Have made these several times. Delicious!! This is a new favorite go-to recipe. Thanks, Mel!!

  42. Ro says:

    Yum! I began making my own taco seasoning years ago… the packaged mixes were making me sick in the middle of the night, fighting for air. Making this tonight, it is similar but much simpler. TY for posting it.

  43. Mel,
    I made this taco meat tonight, and loved it. I didn’t have a jalapeno on hand so I used some canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. I also had to add a wee bit of water (like a scant tablespoon) to thin the meat mixture out a bit. I will be making it again for sure!
    –Michelle Jones

  44. levi says:

    Just browsing through and found your recipe sounds like a good one. I have one question what if i wanted to double the meat do i double the ingredients as well?

  45. Julie says:

    AWESOME!! I cook these at least once a week! Thank you!!

  46. […] realize you could make taco meat from scratch until I saw a recipe on my favorite recipe blog, Mel’s Kitchen Cafe. I made her recipe for (the best) tacos one night, and I realized I could never turn back. They […]

  47. Andrea says:

    I love this recipe! I always use it now when I make tacos. Thanks for posting.

  48. […] to make and most people would probably enjoy making them. They would also probably taste great. the only downside to this site is that it is in imperial but it is the only one I […]

  49. Emily says:

    I really love this taco recipe. This past week I made them yet again, using ground turkey, no jalapeno (my husband doesn’t do spicy and I just don’t like cutting them), and a cocoa chili powder. It was fabulous and I enjoyed the leftovers all week!

  50. Nancy E says:

    I’ll be honest. I love the taco seasoning packets! But I’ve loved all your recipes that I’ve tried so I want to try this really soon!

  51. Lindsey says:

    I am sitting here waiting for these 10 minutes to go by so my family and I can dig in! The whole house smells delicious…Can’t wait! 🙂

  52. Auntie Karats says:

    Love your website and these tacos are outrageously simple and good. Just wanted to suggest a can of rotel diced tomatoes with lime and cilantro as an alternative to tomato sauce and jalapeño. Thanks for another great recipe!!

  53. Yolie :) says:

    This is a really good recipe, I also used the package taco mix, and your recipe is so good. thanks for your site 🙂

  54. Jen says:

    I made these last night after finding them on Pinterest and they really are amazing. Ya know that slightly “off” taste that the packaged taco seasonings have? Not here. Tastes like restaurant quality taco meat. I used ground turkey and an extra jalapeno (we like things spicy), but kept everything else the same. My husband was very impressed which is saying a lot for a guy who normally drowns everything he eats in hot sauce. This was tasty enough on it’s own and he went back for seconds (OK, I did too).

  55. Paola says:

    I tried this recipe tonight and it was a hit with my family!!! They loved it and asked me to make it again! I was looking for a recipe online and I went over several before I picked this one. This one was just what I was looking for…delicious and very easy to make. I put less chili powder since my son who is 11 years old doesn’t like anything that’s hot.
    Thank you again for such a wonderful recipe!

  56. Patti says:

    made this tonight… amazing! I did not have a can of tomato sauce though, and only a tablespoon or so of tomato paste… I added an equal amount of water to that, and then a little bit more water, and then some ketchup (maybe a tablespoon) to get it just moist enough. It was so good! The ketchup gave it a touch of sweetness. I did add a bit more salt as well. Love the spices!

  57. kim says:

    Perfect. I’ve triedmany, many home made taco recioes, including Cook’s Illustrated “Best” recipe, but none of them were quite right. This hit the mark. I used 8 oz. picante sauce instead of tomato sauce though, and added 2 TB’s of tomato paste. THANK YOU so much!

  58. Rachel R says:

    This is our new taco recipe. We added a can of beans and it was great!

  59. Ashley says:

    Hi Mel, I just made these for me and my housemate and they were delicious! Thanks so much for the recipe, I’ll be using it again 🙂

  60. Rose says:

    Thank you so much Mel my family loves it…They want me to cook it again to our grand home party this Nov.

  61. Mel says:

    Jessica – I guess I’m a little confused about what you want to use the marinara sauce for. Are you wanting to make spaghetti sauce or are you wanting to sub it in for the tomato sauce? I’ve never subbed anything for the tomato sauce (I just use the kind in the cans found by the diced tomatoes).

  62. Jessica Hermes says:

    Hey I have a question. I have all the ingredients for the tacos, but I have a jar of Bertolli sauce. Do you think that would work? It is the red kind not alfredo.

  63. Darlene says:

    I was searching the web for the best ever ground beef taco recipe, and found your site. I am so glad that I did!! I love beef tacos, but the boxed kinds were tough on my husband’s belly too.
    I tried it out tonight, and it was perfect!!! Everyone loved it!! The flavors just don’t compare to pre-mixed brands….this recipe is easy to make and a sure hit 🙂
    Thanks so much…I can’t wait to try out other recipes here!

  64. Joy says:

    Since I never have jalapeños on hand I frequently sub the canned diced green chilis.

  65. Mel says:

    Bobbe – add it right when it indicates in the second paragraph of the directions (with the jalapeno).

  66. So. . .when do you add the tomato sauce?

  67. Rachel Winkler says:

    Just have to say we love this recipe. One of my girls Jose this for birthday dinner because it was “SO good, mommy”. It’s my go-to when I need something quick and delicious. Thank you!!!

  68. YolieA. says:

    This is way better than the packet, thanks for the recipe :0)

    • alaminhossain says:

      These tacos are absolutely amazing! I did add jalapenos but left out the onions.I love this recipe so much. I believe it was the second recipe I tried from your site. We make it often. I add 1 can of kidney beans and 1 cup of the Costco organic frozen sweet corn. I have fallen in love with jalapeños since finding your site. They really add so much to all the recipes I’ve tried with jalapeños.

  69. SB says:

    I’ve made these probably 6 times in the past couple months and they are spectacular every time!! Thanks so much for posting the recipe; I never would have thought to add tomato sauce to my tacos and I stopped using those disgusting packets years ago — too much MSG, chemicals and garbage in them anyway. These are absolutely delicious! I do add some cayenne pepper for a kick… just fantastic! Thanks again

  70. Stephanie says:

    These tacos are the best! Well seasoned the right amount of GB to go inside the hard shell…..ummmmmmmmmmm……mhhmmmmmmmmmmmm DELICIO’S

  71. Michele says:

    Made these for dinner tonight and they were sooooo good. I will never buy the packaged taco seaoning again!!!!

  72. Celia says:

    Another great recipe! I omitted the pepper in the end because I didn’t want hubby to have to sweat it out. Everything else was perfect!

  73. Melanie says:

    These tacos are absolutely amazing! I did add jalapenos but left out the onions. I’m new to cooking, and these tacos were fun and easy to make! So thankful to have stumbled across this site! Excited to try your other recipes. Thanks for sharing, Mel!

  74. Zim says:

    I just tried this recipe for our taco night dinner tonight and it is just fantastic. It is now my go to recipe! I just trashed my last 2 prepackaged taco mixes. Thank you for another great / fast recipe.

  75. Deb says:

    This was so easy and so awesome! I would say it maybe takes 5 more minutes than using the mix and it’s way worth it. I used ground turkey and it was so good, I don’t even feel the need to try ground beef. Thanks!

  76. Alles says:

    Made it as per specifications and the boys LOVED it. They kept eating till the meat was gone! I did put in a scotch bonnet 😀 so the kick was substantial!

  77. Bri says:

    I love this recipe so much. I believe it was the second recipe I tried from your site. We make it often. I add 1 can of kidney beans and 1 cup of the Costco organic frozen sweet corn. I have fallen in love with jalapeños since finding your site. They really add so much to all the recipes I’ve tried with jalapeños. We actually usually eat these as burritos instead of tacos. I use the raw tortillas from Costco that you dry fry. I think this is one of my favorite meals we make (there are many). My biggest question for you is have you tried making homemade tortillas? I would love to start making my own so I could use a different oil other than the canola that are in the costco ones (or I would use organic canola). Anyway, we love this meal like so many of your others!

  78. Cara says:

    I’m glad I found this site. I NEVER use the prepared prepackaged taco seasoning. I prefer to use my own ‘blend’, which includes chopped onions and fresh garlic, salt, pepper, and cumin. I love the idea of making my own tortilla bowls, too. Little ones love the idea of eating the bowl. Mexican dishes are a favorite in my family, including our own Mexican casseroles and Mexican lasagna (or stuffed shells, depending on what I have on hand).

  79. Stacy says:

    Silly question. Do you drain your meat/onion mixture? I usually do when making tacos and spaghetti sauce, but I know a lot of recipes do not have this as an instruction.


    • Mel says:

      Hi Stacy – that is definitely not a silly question! I actually need to edit the recipe, because, yes, I do drain my meat/onion mixture if I am not using extremely lean ground beef.

  80. Farmgirl says:

    Hey there! I tried another one of your wonderful recipes! This one was so good. Very easy and with home ingredients on hand. I love the seasonings. In the past I bought the taco mix envelope seasonings but this is so much better! Thanks for this recipe!

  81. Jenna says:

    Sorry – I forgot to add this — I didn’t have coriander, so I threw in a little paprika and I omitted the jalepeno since my kids aren’t too keen on spicy. Wonderful recipe!

  82. Jenna says:

    Another great recipe! I am slowly cooking my way through your Best Recipes List and I have found another keeper. I thought the tomato sauce would be too overpowering, but it was a nice flavor and made the meat nice and juicy. My kids loved these and I will go to this recipe for our next taco night! Thanks!

  83. nancy says:

    I make killer tacos, and I have never used seasonings:
    fry ground round with finely diced white onion, salt and pepper.
    chop up lettice, add diced green onion, both white and green parts, toss.
    remove the skin from tomatoes and dice.
    add your favorite salsa, mine is pace picante, top with parmesan cheese.
    the key is the taco shell: first, soften the tortillas wrapped, in the microwave. Heat a large frying pan, and add a heaping tablespoon of Crisco solid (Yes, Crisco, it crisps the tortillas up fast with nice bubbles of blisters while leaving the insides soft – fold the tortillas and use tongs, cooking just a few seconds on each side – you can do three at a time – remove each batch to a plate covered with paper towels, and put a dish towel over the top. Add Crisco as needed, per batch. I hope you try this, somehow you can eat and eat and not get full – my husband puts 9 away!

  84. Nicole says:

    Thank you thank you thank you!
    I had boughten a big huge taco seasoning tub at Sams Club and I don’t know if it is the humidity here or what, but last time I made tacos with it they turned out horrible! My nose now turns up at the thought of any packaged taco seasonings, and I figured knowing you there would probably be a recipe on your blog and here it was. These turned out so great! I didn’t add the jalapeno just for my kids sake, and I also didn’t have any coriander so I substituted parsley instead. (good ol’ google search for substitutes) They turned out wonderful- I will definitely be using this from now on

  85. Lauren says:

    Made these a few weeks ago and now they are a staple. I need to pull out my Joy of Cooking book more often! Thanks!

  86. Rebecca B says:

    Made these a while back and loved them. Making them for dinner again tonight!! For a bit of spice and oh-so-yummy-goodness, we added some pickled jalapenos on top.
    I like the fact that these are completely from scratch and you know what exactly is going into your body! I felt much better about feeding these to my kids than from the spice bag, and they are so much tastier IMHO.

  87. Debs says:

    I have not had Tacos for years. Thanks for the reminder, will have to try your recipe very soon.

  88. Kimiko says:

    I made this a few days ago and loved it. I will never buy packaged taco seasoning again! This is so easy, and TASTY! We ran out of taco shells and had extra meat, so we baked some tortillas in the oven, and made tostadas. I have a feeling I will be making these again and again!

  89. Kina says:

    Made this last night and I have to agree that the seasoning was far better than packaged taco seasoning. It also turned out better than the way I usually make my tacos. I plan to play around with the seasoning to suit our preferences but this is definitely my new “go-to” recipe for tacos!!! Thanks so much!

  90. Diana Shrome says:

    YUM!!! made this last night and it is WAY better tasting than packaged stuff..This will be my ONLY taco meat from now on..

  91. Crystalyn says:

    I love enjoy looking at your web site and have loved everything I have tried, which is amazing and almost unbelievable. Anyway. I am becoming a good cook and have outgrown Better Homes and Garden. Can you tell me more about The JOY of Cooking?

    • Mel says:

      Hi Crystalyn – I would definitely recommend the Joy of Cooking to anyone who is semi-serious in the kitchen. It has recipes from beginner to extremely advance and many of the more intense recipes include simple drawings/illustrations. It is definitely a must-have. It has a section for everything – all the main categories plus a buffet section and other unique sections.

  92. Danielle says:

    This has become my go-to taco meat recipe. It is so, so flavorful. We really like it with half meat and half beans (black or pinto). Sometimes if I have a crazy afternoon, I make it in the morning and stick it in the crock pot for the day. It really adds to the flavor.

    Thanks for introducing me to packet-free tacos (see, you’re not the last one)!

  93. Alicia says:

    3 yr old girl: “Mom! This is YUM!”
    4 yr old boy: “Mom, this is REALLY YUM! Thanks for dinner, Mom.”
    In other words, this is a hit. Both of those comments were made after just one bite.

  94. I just made this last night and it was AMAZING!! I also made your Balsamic Black Bean Salsa which was just perfect. Thanks for the great recipes! BTW- I’m starting a “best recipes from other blogs” section on my blog- these will go in there!

  95. Sonya says:

    Thanks for a great quick taco seasoning. This was so yummy and I had all the seasoning in the cabinet. It was a HUGE hit!

  96. mia says:

    Love that idea Deborah! (I may mix some of this up and keep it in a little spice container in my spice drawer) OH I LOVE GOOD IDEAS!! Yay!!!

    Mel ~ yum, yum, yum. This is delicious and tasts so much more ‘natural’ than the packages, if that makes sense. I one time started to make tacos and when I went to grab the package of seasoning, realized I didn’t have one…so I spiced the meat up (made it up as I went along) and it was really good but I totally forgot what I used besides chili powder, so I’m so glad to have found this recipe. This is awesome. (I didn’t add the tomato sauce cuz I was using it for taco salad…you know the whole ‘tortilla bowl I just finished raving about?) so I wanted a dry meat. Delicious. I will add the tomato sauce next time if I can convince myself to eat a taco and not HAVE to have it in a bowl instead 🙂 🙂

    • Mel says:

      mia – I like the natural taste of this spice mixture, too. And hey, there’s nothing wrong with preferring your tacos in a bowl!

  97. Deborah says:

    I found a seasoning recipe online awhile ago, and I always have some made up in a jar that I keep with my spices. We never like the whole packet of taco seasoning, and I got tired of having half empty packages in the cabinet. The homemade one is better, and easier because it’s just in a jar! I’ll have to try this recipe because it sounds wonderful!

  98. RecipeGirl says:

    I’m glad you discovered that you don’t have to use package seasoning! They’re so much better when it’s homemade 🙂

  99. Natalie says:

    Hi!My name is Natalie, and I found your blog a little while ago, and I have been a HUGE fan ever since! The recipes you make always sound so delicious, and very do-able at the same time. I have four young kids and a husband who loves to eat good food. But I’m really not a great cook. However, your blog gives me hope that I can be. I especially appreciate that you leave your own practical tips for your recipes. I made the German Chocolate brownies. SO good! I hope you don’t mind if I link you on my blog. Everytime your blog is updated, I get so excited to see what you’re cooking next!

  100. Melanie says:

    Thanks everyone for commenting. It looks like I’m officially the last person on the planet to try a homemade taco meat/seasoning! You are all in trouble for not informing me of the benefits earlier. 🙂Sarah, I whole-heartedly support you making the Joy of Cooking your next person. It is so worth it.Natalie – what a sweet comment! Thank you. You made my day. I commented on your blog, too!

  101. Steph says:

    I haven’t made taco’s in a long while because of those nasty taco seasoning packets. I will definitely have to try these, because I miss tacos…. Thanks!

  102. Sarah says:

    I am always surprised at myself that I don’t own “The Joy of Cooking”. I really have to make this my next purchase.There is nothing like homemade seasonings instead of the packets. I found this out with an amazing batch of chili one day and the next time I made tacos hunted down a recipe as well. I will never go back to the packages.

  103. grace says:

    the taco seasoning packets are pretty foul. plus, i don’t think they ever contain coriander, which i agree is a delicious component. all hail <>joy of baking<>. 🙂

  104. Mary says:

    This sounds really good! Our daughter’s fave food is tacos and I always only use about 1/2 the pack of seasoning because I too think it’s too strong and ick. I will definitely try this out though! 🙂

  105. Lina says:

    Looks great! Taco night is the best night~!

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