Earlier this week, I discovered I was fresh out of my pork sausage seasoning. I pulled out the recipe to make more (after combing through my recipe binder not once, but TWICE trying to find it), and thought, “Hey, this would be something fun to share! I wonder how long it will take me to find a couple more of my favorite spice mixes in this pile o’ recipes?” Longer than necessary, despite having a fancy recipe binder, complete with LABEL TABS! Welcome to the never-ending search and rescue mission called my life.
You think: No time for this!
I promise, it hardly takes a moment. Unless you have to run to the store for a missing ingredient. At that point you could just buy dry Ranch mix or taco seasoning and save yourself the trouble. But hear me out. It’s fun to play with herbs and spices and I’m sure there is a cost savings in there somewhere. And no funky ingredients. That’s something, right?
If you are still with me, grab a bowl and some measuring spoons and let’s play with herbs.
First up is pork sausage seasoning. I started making this when I read the ingredient label on pre-seasoned ground pork and breakfast link packaging. Why on God’s green earth would meat need that many unnatural ingredients to taste good is a mystery. I use this to season sausage for patties, pizza, or just crumbled meat. Go easy on the ground clove if that’s not your thing.
For 8 pounds of meat:
8 tsp dried sage
8 tsp salt
4 tsp pepper
4 heaping tbsp sugar
dash of red pepper or cayenne
¼-½ tsp ground cloves (a dab will do ya’)
1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Store in an airtight container or in a glass jar with a lid.
2. Use 4 teaspoons for one pound of meat.
This taco seasoning recipe is probably one of my top five Ah-Ha Moments ever. For cooking at least. Homemade taco seasoning has a depth of flavor beyond what I had found in a packet. This recipe is somewhat spicy, so I toned down the cayenne for kid-friendliness.
Makes enough for 8 pounds of meat
8 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp red pepper flake OR 1 tsp cayenne (more or less, depending on heat preference)
2 tsp dried oregano
4 tsp paprika
6 tsp cumin
8 tsp salt
8 tsp black pepper
8 tsp flour
1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Store in an airtight container or a glass jar with a lid.
2. To prepare, add ¾ to 1 cup of water to 1 pound of meat, then stir in 3 1/2 tablespoons of seasoning mix. Cook on medium-high until sauce thickens.
While this recipe for dry ranch makes a perfectly acceptable ranch dressing, I much prefer to use it in hotdish, mac salad, and in burgers. As you can see from the picture, the parsley flakes float on the top, so make sure to stir it around and get all the flavors.
¼ cup black pepper
1 ½ cups parsley flakes
½ cup garlic salt
2 tbsp salt
¼ cup granulated garlic
½ cup granulated onion
2 tbsp dill weed
1. Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Store in an airtight container or a jar with a lid.
2. To prepare dressing, mix 2 tbsp mix with 2 cups of mayonnaise, 2 cups of buttermilk, 1 ½ cups sour cream and 1 tsp lemon juice. Use date on buttermilk for expiration.
There you have it! Three homemade seasoning mixes. Printables are in the links at the top and with each recipe.
Oh, and here’s a bonus, semi-homemade marinade….
Place one pound of meat into a zipper bag, add 1/2 cup garlic teriyaki sauce and 1 tablespoon of Montreal Steak Seasoning. Marinate in fridge for a few hours.