Ancho Chili Spice Blend

Ancho Chili Spice Blend

Yes, this recipe is for a spice rub, but we are going to talk about tacos. Because this ancho chili spice blend is one of my go-to spice blends when I make tacos.

There are many premade spice blends that I consistently have on hand. But taco seasoning isn’t one of them–I haven’t found one that pleases my taste buds yet. Maybe it will be the next one I try?

In the meantime, I’ll continue experimenting with my own spice blends. And I encourage you to try as well! Making your own blends allows you to easily tweak the spices for your personal tastes and use what you have on hand or that is easily accessible to you. For example, I can’t stand cilantro, coriander, or fennel seed, so I tend to omit those (or use them in very tiny amounts) in my spice blends. And I love (ok, am obsessed) with garlic, so you can bet garlic will be found in most of my blends!

Now, a picture of a bowl of mixed spices may not look too exciting, but check out these (vegan) tacos!

ancho chili spice blend vegan tacos

The tofu is pressed, drained, and cut into ~1″ cubes. Dust with the ancho chili spice blend and a dash of neutral oil. Then put into a 425 degree oven until the outside is slightly crispy. Serve with your favorite toppings. We had quick-pickled radishes, some fresh lettuce and tomatoes, and a cashew garlic lime crema. Yes, I know I forgot the avocados!

And as a side note, this spice blend is not over spicy–my 6-year old devoured his tacos! Ancho chilis, which are dried poblano peppers, are typically mild in the heat department and have a slightly sweet and smoky flavor. If you want to kick up the heat level, add a pinch or so of cayenne pepper.

This ancho chili spice blend is also fantastic on grilled chicken and vegetables. I’m also thinking, although I haven’t tried yet, it would be excellent on a burger. Next time I’m going to try it in some black bean soup topped with that cashew garlic lime crema.

Let me know how you adapted this recipe for your tastes and what you like using this blend on!

Ancho Chili Spice Blend

Not too spicy and just a hint of sweetness brings deliciousness to your tacos! It is also perfect as a rub before you put meat or veggies on the grill.
Prep Time5 mins
Author: Rachel at Fridge Two Table


  • 3 tsp ground ancho chili
  • 1 tsp paprika (I typically use sweet since that is what I always have on hand, try smoked for a little extra flavor!)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tsp kosher salt
  • pinch of cayenne pepper (optional, for a bit of an extra kick)


  • Combine spices in a small bowl and mix well.
  • It not using right away, store in a sealed container in a dark, dry location for up to 6 months.

Did you try this recipe? Did you make some tweaks? Do you have a question? Just want to say hi? Please leave a comment!