Make Your Mix: 3 Seasoning Blends You Can Make at Home

make-your-mix
Image adapted from iStock

If you’re looking for a cost effective alternative to buying seasoning or mixing packets, making your own is the way to go. If you can find spices in bulk, then I would suggest buying them that way because then, you’ll never rarely run out of seasonings. Making your own mixes can save money in the long run, but if you’re like me, buying all of these spices in bulk, all at once, isn’t fiscally reasonable. Start slow, like I did. Use what you have first, then gradually replace your empty spice bottles with bags that you get to fill yourself, at your grocery store’s bulk stations – I love this option because it enables me to get only what I need while staying within my budget).

I’m not a precise measurer, I usually just dump a little of this, and shake in a little of that. I know people who are measurers, and so, in case you are too, I found some great recipes, measurements and all. Here are three that you can make yourself.

taco
Image via Steven DePolo, Wikimedia

Taco Seasoning:

This recipe is good for a one-time use – just mix all the ingredients in a small bowl and you’re good to mix it in with whatever you make your tacos with (chicken, beef, beans…). 

  • 1 tablespoon of chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 
  • ¼ teaspoon oregano
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • 1 ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper 

Make it in bulk! I found this bulk recipe that lasts eight to ten meals, depending on how much you need to use. Use around three tablespoons per pound of browned burger. If you have a collection of empty glass jars, you can dump all of the ingredients in it, and when they’re all added, lid it and then shake it up.

  • ½ cup chili powder
  • ¼ cup ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons of ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons oregano
  • 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
  • 1 ½ tablespoon paprika
  • 2 ½ tablespoons salt
  • 2 ½ tablespoons black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch

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Italian dressing
Image via Mogart, Wikimedia

Italian Dry Mix:

You can use this dry mix as a rub, or a seasoning for anything – potatoes, vegetables, soups, anything, a roast!

  • 3/8 teaspoons garlic powder
  • ¼ tablespoon onion powder
  • ½ tablespoon oregano
  • ¼ tablespoon granulated sugar
  • ½ tablespoons salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon basil
  • 1/16 teaspoon ground thyme
  • 1/8 teaspoon celery leaves

Make it in bulk! This bulk recipe yields around ten tablespoons.

  • 1 7/8 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 1 ¼ tablespoons onion powder
  • 2 ½ tablespoons oregano
  • 1 ¼ tablespoons dried parsley
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 2 ½ tablespoons salt
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons black pepper
  • 1 ¼ teaspoons basil
  • 1/3 teaspoon thyme
  • 5/8 teaspoon celery leaves

Suppose you want to make some Italian salad dressing? All you have to do is combine the following in a jar:

  • 2 tablespoons of this mixture
  • ¼ cup vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • ½ cup oil (I like olive oil); you can add a little more, if needed.

Shake it up.

ranch
Image via Whitney, Wikimedia

 Ranch Seasoning: 

I have a friend who lives off ranch dressing – she puts it on nearly everything she eats. Can you blame her? It’s kind of delicious, and it is just as versatile as the dry Italian mix – you can use it to season anything.

For a one-time use, mix together:                                                                                                                                                  

  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • ¾ teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¼ teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon dill

Here are the measurements to make it in bulk:

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  • 1 ¼ teaspoon parsley
  • 2 ½ teaspoons white pepper
  • 1 ¼ tablespoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ¾ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • ¾ teaspoon dill

Top your green salads off with homemade ranch dressing by mixing 1 tablespoon (or a little more if you wish) with 1 cup mayonnaise and 1 cup buttermilk. When I don’t have buttermilk, I add a tablespoon of vinegar to my milk so that it curdles it, and then I mix it in.

I’m going to make some of these, this weekend. Do you want to make some with me?

Oh, before I forget – in addition to bulk sections at your grocer, I want to tell you that sometimes you can find deals on bulk spices at Amazon. And on a side note, today at school, someone informed me that the holidays are just 10 weeks away, and pre-made seasoning packets make great, inexpensive gifts. So get ready to start making thrifty gifts with me in a few weeks!

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Make Your Mix: 3 Seasoning Blends You Can Make at Home

Melanie Denney lives in the smallest of towns, with her two little darlings. She has a Bachelor's degree and happily works as a full-time mother and a freelance writer, specializing in sociology and recreation leadership. ... More

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3 comments

  1. dawn says:

    i am so glad i read this! i am deffinately gonna try these out.

  2. EbyMom says:

    Wow this also helps one save a lot of money and u know what u are serving ur family. Love the idea.

  3. Tammy says:

    Love the idea of making bulk seasonings. Seems very cost effective and fairly easy to put together.

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