Thursday, March 26, 2009

TACO FILLING

I often look at the packets of dry seasoning and gravy mixes, at the grocery store, and wonder what is in them besides the main ingredient which seems to be salt. I see young cooks buying packets of taco seasoning mix and I have to resist the urge to tell them “save your money…you probably have the necessary ingredients at home already!”

This is a good, basic, kid friendly recipe for beef taco filling because it is more flavorful than spicy; I’ve used this recipe for many years. If you like more “heat”, just add some (seeded and diced) jalapeƱo peppers. Personally, I like more heat than my husband (who thinks black pepper is too spicy LOL), so instead of bumping up the seasoning in the whole recipe, I just add some pepperjack cheese to MY taco.

1 pound lean ground beef
2/3 cup chopped sweet onion
3 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon regular paprika (not the hot kind)
pinch garlic powder
pinch of dried red pepper flakes (or to taste)
½ cup water
(1) 4 ounce can of Ortega chopped mild green chiles

Brown the ground beef and onions, then drain well. Return meat to pan and add everything else. Simmer for about 15 minutes, using your spatula to chop the burger into fine pieces as it cooks. The water will help disperse the seasonings and then it will cook away. Turn heat down and keep warm until ready to use.

NOTE: If have an unexpected guest or two, just add some refried beans to the meat and mix well.

15 comments:

girlichef said...

Not much better than a taco.

Barbara Bakes said...

I think the same thing about the packets - why? Your tacos look great!

Katherine Aucoin said...

I am so glad you posted this because I am guilty of using taco seasoning in a packet and I have all of the ingredients you mentioned at home.

Your tacos look fantastic. My girls would love these!

Cate said...

Mmmm, love tacos, the messier the better!

Elyse said...

It's so true, Coleen! I have all of these spices in my pantry right now. People shouldn't pay the extra money to buy some overly salty mix!! Your tacos look fabulous, by the way. I love a good Taco. Todd and I--until we fell off the bandwagon--used to have taco Tuesdays, and we'd make all kinds of tacos from fish and beef to pork and chicken (never sold him on the tofu)!

burpandslurp said...

yay! a breakdown on taco seasoning! I find those packets quite expensive when you can make them at home! I like spice, so I'll definitely add some chili.

Judy said...

We love tacos and I usually make them from scratch but this recipe looks better than mine. I am going to try these. Thanks and also thanks for the award.

Donna-FFW said...

Your tacos look restaurant quality Coleen, no even better actually, I have go to try these, its actually a favorite here!

SUGAMAMA'S CAFE' said...

They look great.. I make my own spice concotions. A few years back I made taco and put in smoky paprika.. The family thought it was great. The first few times, then hated it! Took about 3 months to get rid of all of it before I could make a new patch!

Carrie said...

I wonder that about seasoning packets too!! What's in there?! I've never made my own taco seasoning but I think I have everything you listed in my cabinet already, I will definitely use this recipe next time we make tacos! :-D

Be My Chickadee said...

I like that there isn't a puddle of water or grease under the taco (I'm telling on myself...)

Kim said...

Yes! I agree with you!! At last! Who knows what's in that packet of seasoning. I loved the comment about your husband saying black pepper is too spicy.

Judy said...

This is a great recipe. I have a can of chilies to use up and have plenty of spices.

Chris said...

Yummy, very versatile recipe!

Gloria Chadwick said...

Tacos taste so much better when you make them without using a seasoning mix. Great recipe! :)