The best secret ingredient for chili is Homemade Chili Seasoning, a blend of herbs and spices that take ordinary ground beef and beans to the next level.
Making your own spice blends is where it’s at, and it saves you money. Homemade Cajun Seasoning is deliciously spicy on whatever it touches. Italian Seasoning is mama, mia, good. And don’t forget Montreal Steak Seasoning on strip steaks, beef tenderloins, and anything grilled.
Skip the packet and the expensive little jar of McCormick chili seasoning. As long as you have a batch of homemade chili mix in the pantry, your favorite chili recipe will always be perfectly seasoned and delicious. Not too spicy, but wonderfully rich and hearty.
Once chili season comes, your biggest problem might be deciding what kind of chili to make first. This homemade blend of spices is a natural fit for beans, venison, ground beef, ground turkey, or shredded chicken. Make a big pot of mouthwatering chili for your next potluck or Sunday supper; it couldn't be easier when you have your own custom seasoning.
Making Homemade Chili Seasoning for a chili mix kit? Click and slide the number next to “servings” on the recipe card below to adjust the ingredients to match how many you’re feeding—the recipe does the math for you, it’s that easy.
What spices go in chili?
Here's what this recipe for Homemade Chili Seasoning contains. Think of it as an all-purpose chili seasoning that works with everything. It doesn't contain any added salt, plus it's gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan. So it's perfect for vegetarian or vegan chili, too.
- Chili powder. *
- Ground cumin.
- Dried oregano.
- Chipotle chili powder.
- Dried thyme.
- Ground coriander.
Technically, you can add a little of this and a bit of that to just about any homemade chili. After all, it's a recipe that was created around a campfire in the great outdoors to feed hungry folks.
And every chili is supposed to be a little different. Depending on where it's made, chili can be a mish-mash of regional flavors and ingredients, every version unique and delicious.
*Looking for a chili seasoning without chili powder? Leave it out if you don't like it, or make a chili powder substitute with cumin, paprika, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper.
How to make Homemade Chili Seasoning:
This recipe makes a little more than 1/2 cup of chili seasoning. Once you gather all the spices, making the best chili seasoning you'll ever taste is fast and easy.
- Simply combine the ground cumin, chili powder, oregano, thyme, and coriander together in a small bowl. That’s it!
- You can store the blend in a glass jar with a tight-fitting lid and keep it in the pantry for when you need it.
What is chili powder?
Frequently chili powder is a blend of dried red peppers and other spices: usually cayenne pepper, ground cumin, paprika, and garlic powder. It’s kind of a catch-all ingredient that most people use as the only spice in their chili or chili con carne.
Most chili powder tastes mild, but can be spicy, depending on the amount of cayenne pepper in the mix or how fresh it is. Some brands even include added salt.
Chile powder, on the other hand, is a blend of only dried peppers: ancho, cayenne, or chipotle. Homemade Ancho Chile Powder is really just ground ancho chilies.
While chili powder is an important ingredient in chili recipes everywhere, this recipe for homemade chili seasoning boosts up the cumin, adds coriander and a couple other herbs for a deeper, more robust flavor you’ll fall in love with.
How to make chili:
As you might imagine, there are as many delicious chili recipes around as there are chili lovers. Try some of these or invent your own for chili every day of the week.
- Healthy Turkey Chili. A fabulous and easy ground turkey recipe that's so good for you.
- Slow Cooker Chili Con Carne. Slow cooked traditional chili is great to come home to after a frantic day. Especially with cornbread.
- Venison Chili. Got a hunter in the family? Help them make space in the freezer with this healthy chili made with deer meat.
- Cincinnati Chili. Famous chili eaten on spaghetti and topped with onions and cheese. Add some cinnamon to the mix to make it authentic.
- Slow Cooker White Chicken Chili. Creamy white chili that wows them at parties.
Homemade Chili Seasoning
- 1/4 cup chili powder
- 2 tablespoons ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 2 teaspoons chipotle chili powder or 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon ground corinader
- In a small bowl, combine chili powder, cumin, oregano, chipotle chili powder, thyme, and coriander. Stir to combine. Store covered for up to 6 months.