You know, that make at home stuff, that kind of real,¬†ingredients you don’t need just to make it pretty. This includes you American Paprika, you’re only job here would be food coloring and we can live without kids with orange chins and shirts likewise stained. And I’m also looking at you partially hydrogenated soybean oil, whey, maltodextrin, ethoxyquin and 10% of your daily sodium, we just don’t need you futzing up a nice healthy meal, so move on along.

This post is happening because I said “hey I’ll make taco meat for 25, no prob!” Only to get home and realize not everyone is going to like my style of taco meat which consists of cumin, chili powder and salt only. I needed the real deal and quickly. I did a quick Internet search and found 1.9 billion recipes for it and every single one included paprika which I was out of. I am nothing if not resourceful and I quickly googled ‘what taste does paprika have’ only to find out that American Paprika is mostly tasteless to most people, huh.

Smoked Paprika is amazing and I try to order it when I can find it or hit the spice shop. Now I wouldn’t have used it in Taco Seasoning but I do like to keep it on hand for my Smokehouse Almonds. And Hungarian Paprika is the more widely used very flavorful paprika. American Paprika is used for color not taste, interesting. And useful, it meant I could use the recipe and omit the paprika.

I mixed up the original recipe and found it very dull once mixed with the ground beef I was cooking. Did it need to have the boost of paprika? Did it in fact have a flavor element meant to enhance everything else? Double darn! I had 3 other items cooking at the time so I was really going nowhere to find questionable paprika. I finally decided to double
the cumin and almost double the chili powder and add more salt. Ah there was the flavor I was looking for, almost identical to well seasoned meat without the cost of a packet of seasoning that runs about 20 dollars a pound. Now I know and so do you.

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Real Taco Seasoning
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Instructions
  1. mix together
  2. store in a jar until needed
  3. use with one month for best flavor
  4. to use add 2 TBSP to one pound of meat
  5. add 1/3 cup of water
  6. simmer until water is mostly evaporated

Now of course add more or less of the spices according to your preferred taste. And if you like it orange please do feel free to add up to 1 teaspoon of paprika. And I think Smoked Paprika would be excellent in tacos but if added to the mix and stored it may become overwhelming, so best to add separately, directly to the cooked meat.