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Coupon Abbreviations
  • SC = Store Coupon
  • MC = Manufacturer Coupon
  • SS = Smart Source
  • RP = Red Plum
  • PG = Proctor and Gamble
Coupon Terms
  • WYB = When You Buy
  • B1G1 = Buy One Get One Free
  • .75/1 = 75 cents off one item
  • .75/3 = 75 cents off three items
  • EXP = Expiration Date

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Easy recipes for homemade spice blends!

If you enjoy cooking a great way to save money is to make your own spice blends and mixes! It is fun to be able to control exactly what you are putting in them. You can make changes based on your family’s preferences or what you have on hand.

The key to creating fresh spice blends is to buy whole spices and use a coffee grinder to grind them as needed. Pre-ground spices lose their flavor more quickly. You’ll be able to taste, see, and smell the difference.

As a general rule of thumb, we never add salt to spice blends. This allows you to adjust the amount of spices you have without adjusting the amount of salt. If you want something really spicy it doesn’t have to taste like a salt lick. Store bought spice blends almost always have salt as the first or second ingredient.

Spice blends can be mixed ahead of time and stored in air tight containers. A great option is mason jars and they look nice in your pantry too!

Spice Blend Recipes:

Taco Seasoning

Recipe
-2 Tbsp Chili Powder
-2 Tsp Cornstarch
-1 Tsp Coriander
-1 Tsp Cumin
-1 1/2 Tsp Hot Smoked Paprika
-1/2 Tsp Cayenne Pepper

You can make it more or less spicy by the amount of Cayenne Pepper you add. If you really like it hot you could also throw in some Red Pepper Flakes.

This will season 1 lb of ground meat.

Cajun Spice Blend

Recipe
-2 1/2 Tbsp Paprika
-2 Tbsp Garlic Powder
-1 Tbsp Black Pepper
-1 Tbsp Onion Powder
-1 Tbsp Cayenne Pepper
-1 Tbsp Dried Oregano
-1 Tbsp Dried Thyme

 This yields 2/3 cup. It can be used on almost any kind of meat and is actually very good on potato chips and fries.

Chili Seasoning

Recipe
-4 Tbsp Chili Powder
-1 Tsp Garlic Powder
-1 Tsp Onion Powder
-1 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
-1/4 Tsp Cayenne Pepper
-1 Tsp Dried Oregano
-2 Tsp Paprika
-2 Tsp Cumin
-4 Tsp Black Pepper

When cooking use 1 1/2 Tbsp per lb of meat.

Ranch Dressing

Recipe
-1/3 Cup Nonfat Greek Yogurt
-1/3 Cup Buttermilk
-3 Tbsp Mayonnaise
-1 1/2 Tsp Lemon Juice
-1 Tsp Dijon Mustard
-1/2 Tsp Onion Powder
-1/4 Tsp Garlic Powder
-1 Tbsp Chives
-1 Tsp Parsley

To save time, you can mix the dry ingredients ahead of time. When ready to use, you will then just add the wet ingredients, mix, and serve.

If you don’t have buttermilk on hand you can easily make some by mixing 1 cup Milk with 1 tablespoon white vinegar or lemon juice. Let it sit for 5 minutes and then it is ready to use!

Pumpkin Pie Spice

Recipe
-1 Tsp Cinnamon
-1/4 Tsp Nutmeg
-1/4 Tsp Ginger
-1/8 Tsp Cloves

Makes enough for 1 pumpkin pie.

Montreal Steak Seasoning

Recipe
-2 Tbsp Paprika
-2 Tbsp Crushed Black Pepper
-1 Tbsp Granulated Garlic
-1 Tbsp Granulated Onion
-1 Tbsp Crushed Coriander
-1 Tbsp Dill
-1 Tbsp Crushed Red Pepper flakes

This is great on steak and potatoes.

Chinese 5 Spice Powder

Recipe
-2 Whole Star Anise
-2 Tsp Szechuan or Generic Peppercorns
-1 Tsp Cloves
-1 Tsp Fennel
-1 Tsp Coriander Seed (optional)
-1 Cassia or Cinnamon Stick (broken into pieces)

This is perfect for vegetable stir-fry, dry rubs for meat, rice dishes and more. Keep in mind that a little goes a long way.

Jerk Seasoning

Recipe
-3/4 Tsp Pepper
-3 Tbsp Paprika
-3 Tbsp Garlic Powder
-1 Tbsp Allspice
-3/4 Tsp Cayenne Pepper
-1 1/2 Tsp Nutmeg

To use mix with oil or honey and brush onto chicken, pork, or seafood.

Curry Powder

Recipe
-2 Tbsp Whole Cumin Seeds, toasted
-2 Tbsp Whole Cardamom Seeds, toasted
-2 Tbsp Whole Coriander Seeds, toasted
-1/4 Cup Ground Turmeric
-1 Tbsp Dry Mustard
-1 Tsp Cayenne Pepper

Before using, grind the powder in a spice grinder and then add to dishes.

Italian Seasoning

Recipe
3 Tbsp Dried Basil
3 Tbsp Dried Oregano
3 Tbsp Dried Parsley
1 Tbsp Garlic Powder
1 Tsp Onion Powder
1 Tsp Dried Thyme
1/4 Tsp Black Pepper
1/4 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes

Yields 7 Tbsps of seasoning.

Blackened Seasoning

Recipe
-1 Tsp Basil
-1 Tsp Thyme
-1 Tsp Garlic
-1 Tsp White Pepper
-1 Tsp Black Pepper
-1 Tsp Onion Powder
-2 Tsp Cayenne Pepper
-1 Tsp Paprika

Combine all ingredients and use on meat, pastas dishes, and more.

Do you make your own spice blends? What are you favorite spices to make yourself?

    • Linda

      Great collection! I already do my own taco seasoning but can’t wait to try some of the others. Thanks, Jenny!

    • Nick

      We do our own Taco Seasoning but it is:

      1 tbsp Chili Powder
      2 tsp Onion Powder
      1 tsp each of: Cumin, Garlic Powder, Paprika, Oregeno, and Cayenne Pepper.

      Low sodium and delicious! I multiply it by 10 and make it in bulk! WE LOVE IT!

    • Its_Gwen

      I make Greek Dressing Spice blend in bulk, and we use it as a dry spice, and as a quick dressing mix…here is the recipe:
      http://www.gwens-nest.com/family-favorite-recipes/greek-salad-dressing-recipe/

      And my bulk Ranch recipe, with lots of different ways to use it. It’s SO concentrated, that you use way less than the store brand, and it’s EVERY bit as good (if not better) than the store bought dressings and mixes (and no MSG!)
      http://www.gwens-nest.com/family-favorite-recipes/ranch-dressing-mix/

    • Stephanie

      Thank you for this Jenny!! I have started making ALOT of things homemade of the past several months. I will say.. sometimes it seems more expensive in the beginning when you go to buy starter items, but over time, I see that there are several recipes that call for the same things and so I do not have to rebuy it. Just some of my homemade things other than these wonderful spices include chai tea mix, russian tea mix, brownie mix, cake mix, granola, breakfast bars, bread, allllllllllll kinds of cleaners, laundry detergent (powder and liquid), and several other things. I love knowing what I am feeding my family and cleaning my home with it better for us and honestly… its still VERY frugal!!! God Bless!

    • Mommyof1

      thanks so much for these – we have really tried to eat healthier this month and these will be a great help! thanks for posting

    • Beth

      Thanks! We live close to a farmer’s market that sells spices in small or large containers. I just stocked up. I can’t wait to try some of these recipes!!

    • Jess

      Or if you don’t want to have a ton made up in your cabinet, you could just shake each spice directly onto the meal. This also gives you the freedom to change ratios depending on what you’re going for and what you feel like.

    • Amy

      these are great! have you ever done a homemade version of Lipton’s onion dry mix? i’d love to have that one too!

      • Jennifer

        Lipton Beefy Onion Soup Mix (I don’t have a regular onion one but this one taste just like the Beefy one)

        1/4 cup onion flakes
        2 T beef bouillon granules
        1/4 t onion powder
        1/4 t parsley
        1/8 t celery seed
        1/8 t paprika
        1/8 t black pepper

        It makes the equivalent of one packet of mix.

    • JuneC

      I purchased Whole Cardamom Seeds and I am not sure how to use them. Are you supposed to remove what looks to me like a fuzzy covering to the seeds or just grind the whole thing?

    • TheChapLeigh

      Thanks for this list!!

      I wanted to add a recent spice blend that I’ve found after attending a local-favorite Chef’s workshop of how he easily changes up chicken dishes. One that he uses is Garam Masala, and I LOVE it!! I’ve since used it in both chicken & pork dishes, and is particularly awesome with an orange zest or flavoring added in…. this can be purchased at Harris Teeter, made by McCormic gourmet collection. Now that I’ve realized this is a MUST in my kitchen, I will search out a good recipe to home-make it. The label of ingredients says it’s got: Coriander, black pepper, cumin, cardamom and cinnamon. YUM-O!!

      • TheChapLeigh

        Ok, I couldn’t wait — here’s what i found on All Recipes for “The Magic Spice”… Looks like you can vary it up a lot…

        4 tbsps coriander seeds
        1 tbsp cumin seeds
        1 tbsp black peppercorns
        1 ½ tsps black cumin seeds (shahjeera)
        1 ½ tsps dry ginger
        ¾ tsp black cardamom (3-4 large pods approx)
        ¾ tsp cloves
        ¾ tsp cinnamon (2 X 1” pieces)
        ¾ tsp crushed bay leaves

        Preparation:
        Heat a heavy skillet on a medium flame and gently roast all ingredients (leave cardamom in its pods till later) except the dry ginger, till they turn a few shades darker. Stir occasionally. Do not be tempted to speed up the process by turning up the heat as the spices will burn on the outside and remain raw on the inside. When the spices are roasted turn off the heat and allow them to cool. Once cooled, remove the cardamom seeds from their skins and mix them back with all the other roasted spices. Grind them all together, to a fine powder in a clean, dry coffee grinder. Store in an air-tight container in a cool, dark place.
        ·

    • allison

      I know Aldi’s sells a number of spices at a reasonable price, but can anyone recommend any other store? Spices are up to $5.00 at Walmart, which I feel is exhorbitant. I go to the International market whenever possible.
      Boil one cup of lentils.
      My lentil spice recipe can be eaten on a bed of rice or add water and call it soup!
      After cooking 1/2 onion in oil, add:
      1 tsp salt
      1/4 tsp pepper
      1 tsp cumin
      1/2- 1 tsp garlic
      grate 1 inch of ginger (anti-inflammatory)
      1/4 tsp of turmeric (a great anti-inflammatory/antibiotic medicine)
      Let them cook in the oil because the oil absorbs the flavor.
      Add a dollop of butter.
      Add the boiled lentils to the spices. Cook until thick if you are going to pour them on rice. You can also add a little meat, which will flavor your lentils. Enjoy!
      Thank you for all the other spice recipes, Jenny. I prefer to eat homemade, since I want to avoid msg, because it actually makes us fatter.
      B

    • allison

      I know Aldi’s sells a number of spices at a reasonable price, but can anyone recommend any other store? Spices are up to $5.00 at Walmart, which I feel is exhorbitant. I go to the International market whenever possible.
      Boil one cup of lentils.
      My lentil spice recipe can be eaten on a bed of rice or add water and call it soup!
      After cooking 1/2 onion in oil, add:
      1 tsp salt
      1/4 tsp pepper
      1 tsp cumin
      1/2- 1 tsp garlic
      grate 1 inch of ginger (anti-inflammatory)
      1/4 tsp of turmeric (a great anti-inflammatory/antibiotic medicine)
      Let them cook in the oil because the oil absorbs the flavor.
      Add a dollop of butter.
      Add the boiled lentils to the spices. Cook until thick if you are going to pour them on rice. You can also add a little meat, which will flavor your lentils. Enjoy!
      Thank you for all the other spice recipes, Jenny. I prefer to eat homemade, since I want to avoid msg, because it actually makes us fatter.
      B

    • Jennifer

      I’ve been looking for a good seasoning salt, like Lawrey’s. I’ve looked at a few recipes and bought all the spices when Kroger had them 1/2 off. Haven’t tried the one I found yet since I need a large container for it. One of my large spice containers is almost empty and I will clean it and us it as soon as it is gone.

    • Kris Olson Harden

      I have seen on cooking show where top chefs will tell you to get spices from the dollar store. As long as they are in date and sealed properly they are fine and the same for the most part. You won’t be able to find unusual things but general stuff at a dollar a bottle is great. I do this and it works.
      I have also put them in the brand label bottle and either no one can tell or they want to know why it tastes better, funny. Mrs Dash especially.

    • Guest

      .