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Tacos. So good.
Tacos are usually a weekly meal around my house and I would like to share our tasty homemade taco seasoning we add to ground turkey. Grocery store seasoning is under a dollar but includes up to 15 ingredients and if you’re not careful, some seasonings will slip MSG or caramel coloring in on you. Yucko. Scroll on down to get the granola about the dangers of MSG and caramel coloring.
The hustle is below and I recommend putting your taco pants on and make yourself a delicious taco seasoning with pronounceable, natural ingredients. Best of all, you probably already have all of them in your kitchen cupboard. I usually triple the recipe because, well, we really get down on tacos. Are you up for making some awesome homemade taco seasoning?
Homemade Taco Seasoning
3 tablespoon chili powder
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon onion powder
3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
3/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoon paprika
4 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoon black pepper
*Put all of the ingredients in a Mason jar or container of choice. Shake.
- Brown your ground beef or turkey.
- Add 1/2 cup of water and 3 tablespoons per pound of protein.
- Simmer for 15-20 minutes.
The shelf life of this homemade taco seasoning is up to one year but really, who can wait that long for tacos? This seasoning can be used for all things tacoesque….enchiladas, burritos….you get the idea.
MSG – Monosodium Glutamate
Glutamate is a naturally occurring amino acid that our body needs and uses. When the glutamate is synthetically manipulated and processed, it creates a form that is not naturally found in nature. This form, MSG, can cause health issues such as headaches, fibromyalgia, fatigue, upset stomach and flushing. Some people are more sensitive to MSG than others but regular consumption over time can lead to side effects for those who are not.
MSG is used as an ingredient to enhance the flavor of foods. It is found primarily in processed foods, frozen meals and canned goods to make them taste fresher and smell better. MSG will never be found in whole foods such as fruits, vegetables and unprocessed meats.
It’s a good idea to be on the lookout for MSG when checking out the ingredients of foods you purchase. Manufacturers are required to label foods that contain MSG however; MSG can be snuck in by being labeled other names such as:
Autolyzed Yeast extract
Vegetable Protein Extract
Caramel color is a food coloring used to make soft drinks and a majority of processed foods a brownish color. Food coloring is created by heating or burning a carbohydrate and mixing it with an acid or alkali (ammonia, sulfites). Carbohydrates can come from sugar, barley, lactose, corn or wheat. Since the source of the carbohydrate is not known, anyone with food allergies should avoid caramel coloring due to possible allergic reactions.
When carbohydrates are mixed with ammonia, a chemical called 4-methylimidazole (4-MeI) is produced. Previous studies of 4-Mel have found that the long term exposure to the chemical caused lung, liver and thyroid cancer in mice, according to the California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. These findings led California to add 4-Mel to the list of potentially hazardous chemicals and therefore limiting the exposure levels of 4-Mel in products sold in the state.
That is some pretty scary stuff! But what it all boils down to is the importance of ingredient awareness, especially when it comes to the stuff we are putting in our bodies. If you aren’t already, start looking at the ingredients of the foods you buy. I bet you will be surprised, I know I sure was!
Once you start down the road of ingredient awareness, there is no going back. Trust me, you will be glad you did especially if you have little ones.