If you haven’t tried making your own seasoning blends…you should! My trying it developed mostly out of necessity, since so many contain onion and/or garlic powder. I also love the fact that I can control the ingredients, making things as healthy as possible. Did you know that those seasoning or “mix” envelopes generally contain tons of sodium and other things that aren’t so good for you like artificial sweeteners, preservatives, anti-caking agents and msg?
I’ve mentioned it before in other recipes, so it’s beyond time to share my recipe (at least my current one) for chili powder, which I also use for seasoning taco meat, mixing with yogurt or sour cream for a dip, making enchilada sauce, etc. We’re going to take this in steps because I love a smoky, rich, full-bodied flavor. But, hey, you’re the boss in your own kitchen so if you’re not fond of a particular ingredient go ahead and leave it out (I won’t tell).
For a basic, onion- & garlic-free chili powder you need 3 ingredients: dried chile (I use ancho, because we like it and it’s available), cumin & oregano…
…then for more spice I include smoked paprika & chipotle (notice my jar is almost empty!)…
…next I add a little sumpin-sumpin from the other end of the spectrum – cinnamon & allspice…
…and finally, the surprises in my little cast of characters…cocoa & espresso powder!
Here’s the whole shebang.
I just toss it all in a bowl then mix it all up, smashing it a bit with the back of the spoon to crush the dried oregano leaves a little and help the flavors blend. The recipe below makes about a cup of seasoning, but we like & use it a lot, so I doubled it to fill a pint jar.
Note: If you are used to pre-packaged seasoning blends (like the envelopes) you will notice there is no salt in this recipe, so you might need to add it to whatever you are making to suit your tastes. Also, if using this to season taco meat and you are used to adding water you will need to add a thickening agent like flour or cornstarch (we just sprinkle it on the meat as we are browning it and don’t add any water, so I don’t use a thickener. Again, it just depends on your personal preference).
Rockin' Chili & Tex-Mex Seasoning
An onion-and-garlic-free chili seasoning that is as simple or complex as you want to make it!
- 1/2 cup ground dried ancho chile (or other dried chile you prefer)
- 1/4 cup ground cumin
- 3 tablespoons dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon dried chipotle chile
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoon espresso powder
- The first 3 ingredients are pretty necessary for a basic chili powder. The remaining ingredients are optional according to taste. (But try it if you’re feeling adventurous. They really add depth of flavor!)
- This yields about 1 cup of seasoning. I doubled the recipe to fill a pint-size jar. I use about 3 tablespoons of this mixture in an average pot of chili.