Today, I’m bringing you another fresh homemade seasoning recipe to help you bring amazing flavor to your kitchen without the nasty additives of pre-made mixes: Homemade Adobo Seasoning!
Homemade Adobo Seasoning Recipe
Adobo exists as both a liquid marinade and a dry spice blend. Both are heavily used in Latin recipes to add a blend of warm, zesty and savory flavors.
Adobo seasoning can be tricky to find in most grocery stores, and the options can vary from great quality to flavorless powders jam-packed with salt. There are also often questionable ingredients like maltodextrin which is justified as a preservative but has some serious health risks, monosodium glutamine (MSG), calcium stearate (more health risks), etc.
While I am definitely not the mom who avoids a treat, I also really prioritize keeping a healthy microbiome and if I can avoid ingredients that pose a threat to that, I’m going to. (Both maltodextrin and calcium stearate can have adverse effects on gut health.)
Making our own homemade adobo seasoning is not only cheaper than buying the pre-made mixes, but I can feel good about serving food seasoned with this adobo seasoning to my family.
The best cost savings with this recipe is to purchase your spices from a bulk store, or if that’s not an option, buy the large containers of the individual spices and herbs. Buying the little containers to make this seasoning would be crazy expensive (but ironically, still cheaper than using the seasoning packets).
This homemade adobo seasoning is shelf-stable for up to a year, as long as you use fresh (dried) herbs and spices when you make it and store in a cool, dry spot in your kitchen.
This seasoning is gluten-free, paleo, low-carb and vegan and makes a great homemade gift.
What is adobo seasoning? Our adobo seasoning is made with salt, paprika, black pepper, dehydrated onion (or onion powder), cumin, oregano, dehydrated garlic and ground chipotle pepper. Some versions contain dried orange peel or dried lemon peel, cloves, etc.
Is adobo seasoning spicy? That is completely up to you! Adobo should definitely add some warmth and flavor, but you can control the heat in your homemade seasoning to either avoiding making it too spicy or really amp up the heat.
Making this adobo seasoning once makes enough for 18 batches of our chicken enchiladas recipe. It’s also delicious in dips and soups. I keep all of my homemade spice blends in small mason jars near the stove and they get used daily.
Need some inspiration for how to use your adobo seasoning? Check out these recipes for how to use adobo seasoning:
- Chipotle Chicken Enchiladas
- Chipotle Black Bean & Corn Stuffed Peppers from The Wholesome Dish
- Instant Pot Adobo Chicken from Cooking with Curls
- Crockpot Barbacoa Beef from Shugary Sweets
- Carolina Mustard Barbecue Sauce from Self-Proclaimed Foodie
- Vegan Jackfruit Tacos from Stacey Homemaker
- Creamy Adobo Chicken from The Bitter Side of Sweet
- Keto Instant Pot Chicken Adobo Thighs from Oh So Foodie
You can also use it on popcorn, homemade french fries or potatoes, chicken wings, breaded chicken tenders, or on roasted veggies. The options are endless!
Homemade Adobo Seasoning Ingredients
- Salt – don’t use finishing or kosher salt, opt for a quality sea salt
- Smoked paprika
- Black pepper
- Onion powder, optional – I use dehydrated onion in my homemade seasonings
- Dehydrated Garlic or Garlic powder
- Ground chipotle pepper
Scroll down to the printable recipe card for full measurements.
Tip: you can shake up this recipe by adding cayenne pepper for a spicier ranch, or parmesan for a cheesier ranch.
Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful
- Spice Grinder
- Measuring spoons
- Mason jars, for storing – I do not recommend plastic jars as they can hold moisture and you want to keep this seasoning mix dry to preserve freshness
How to Make Adobo Seasoning
Measuring out your ingredients and mix together.
Store in a glass mason jar in a cool, dry place in your kitchen.
If you’d like a smoother, more uniform texture, measure the ingredients into a spice grinder and blitz for 20 seconds until large pieces are broken but the mix isn’t too powdery.
Grab your free printable for our easy adobo seasoning mix:
- 2 Tablespoons coarse salt
- 1 Tablespoon smoked paprika
- 2 teaspoons cracked black pepper
- 2 teaspoons dehydrated onion or onion powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 1 1/2 teaspoons oregano
- 1 teaspoon dehydrated garlic
- 1 teaspoons ground chipotle pepper
- Measuring out your ingredients and mix together.
- Store in a glass mason jar in a cool, dry place in your kitchen.
- If you'd like a smoother, more uniform texture, measure the ingredients into a spice grinder and blitz for 20 seconds until large pieces are broken but the mix isn't too powdery.
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This easy homemade adobo seasoning mix is an essential kitchen staple and makes a thoughtful homemade gift for the Mexican food lover in your life!
For more recipes using adobo seasoning, check out our Chipotle Chicken Enchiladas recipe (with video).