Homemade Tajín Recipe (Copy Cat)

Versatile, magical chile lime seasoning (aka Tajín) brings bright fiery flavor to so many foods! My Homemade Tajín (Copy Cat) focuses on the lime and roasted chile powders while reducing the sodium content. Elevate your fresh fruit, rim a cocktail, sprinkle on popcorn, rub on grilled chicken breasts

Homemade Low Sodium Tajín (chile lime powder) with ancho and chipotle powder, crystallized lime, and sea salt, in a clear glass bowl on a grey background.

👩🏻‍🍳 Tamara Talks – About Spice Mixes and Plastic

I have to take just a moment to stress the main reason I am looking to create my own spice mixes and condiments. I am a gal with a mission!

I have always been somewhat eco-conscious, but recently have become alarmed at the vast amount of single-use plastic we’re generating on planet Earth. In spite of the popularity of recycling in many parts of the World, plastic isn’t being recycled at even a fraction of the rate we’re generating it.

Making spice mixes is only a small step towards using less plastic. This taco seasoning, and this mole spice blend followed this homemade tajín recipe. Store bought Tajín is very inexpensive and widely available, and I would use it in a pinch. However, making my own, and storing it in reusable glass jars is one of many small steps I’ve begun taking. Join me on my journey?

🌶 What is Tajín?

I was at least half serious in the opening sentence when I referred to tajín as “magical.” This transformative 3 or 4 ingredient powder elevates the simplest ingredients – fresh mango comes to mind – to something special.

Tajín (pronounced ta-heen) is the ubiquitous, chile-lime powder of Mexico, and while we think of it as a spice mix, it is important to note: Tajín is a brand – think Kleenex and CrockPot. Its bracing acidity, spicy kick, and saltiness shines on fruit, but don’t stop there!

Want to know the history of Tajín? See 13 Facts You Didn’t Know About Tajín

My spice jar of Homemade Low Sodium Tajín with a chalk label, a small wood spoon with chile lime powder, and a lime cut in half on a grey background.

🥭 Tajín Seasoning Uses

📋 Ingredients

  • red chile powder – single or a mix. I like ancho and chipotle. New Mexico ground red chile powder is another good option. Avoid generic “chili powder.” It’s a spice blend that includes cumin and other spices.
  • fine sea salt
  • lime powder – Lime powder is widely available, and adds actual lime flavor to the spice blend. Citric acid just adds the sour flavor (rather than lime), but is a good substitute if you can’t find lime powder.
The ingredients for low sodium tají lined up - crystallized lime powder, fine sea salt, ancho and chipotle powders - next to a glass spice jar.

🔪 How to Make Tajín

Most recipes as well as the bottle of commercial Tajín are equal parts – salt, dehydrated lime powder, and red chile powder. At Andersen casa, we try to watch our sodium intake, and have found the “regular” Tajín to be a little too salty for our taste.

  • Add 4 tablespoons of red chile powder (can be 1 kind or a combination) and crystallized lime powder to a small prep bowl.
  • Add 2 tablespoons fine sea salt.
  • Stir well to combine.
  • Using a funnel, add to an airtight container.

💭 Tips

Store spice blends in airtight containers. I use mason jars. I keep “chalkboard” labels and a liquid chalk marker to label them.

If the tajín is exposed to air, it will start to clump. Make small batches that you will use quickly to avoid clumping.

❓ FAQ

Is there a substitute for lime powder?

Yes. Citric acid is a decent substitute for the sour element of this spice mix. Keep in mind it tastes sour rather than like lime!

How can I tell if my tajín is salty enough?

You can add salt, but you can’t subtract salt. Sprinkle a bit on some fruit or cucumber, and add more if you want it saltier.

What kind of red chile powder can I use?

New Mexico red chile powder, generic red chile powder, ancho, chipotle, are all good options. Generic chili powder is not! It is a spice mix that includes things like cumin.

I would like it hotter. What can I use?

To bump the heat up a bit, use a little cayenne (proceed cautiously!).

I hope you’ve found some inspiration for both making your own spice mixes and creative ways to use them! See What to Put Tajín On for more ideas…

Signature in red and green with chiles and limes. Healthyish Latin cuisine.

A clear glass bowl with Homemade Low Sodium Tajín and a stainless steel measuring spoon.

Homemade Tajín Recipe

My version of the ubiquitous Mexican chile-lime powder with ancho and chipotle powder, crystallized lime powder, and a little less salt!
4.71 from 37 votes

Click to rate!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes
Course Condiment
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 96 servings
Calories 2 kcal

Ingredients
  

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients thoroughly in a prep bowl.
  • Use a funnel to store in an airtight container.
  • Keeps indefinitely (I think!).

Notes

My recommendation is for a total of 4 tablespoons of red chile powder. You can choose your favorites and make it as hot or mild as you like! Cayenne is a good way to boot the heat if you like it extra hot.
I recommend the True Lime because it actually tastes like lime (not just sour). There are similar products out there that can probably get the job done.

Nutrition

Calories: 2kcal | Monounsaturated Fat: -1g

NOTE: Macronutrients are an approximation only using unbranded ingredients and MyFitnessPal.com. Please do your own research with the products you’re using if you have a serious health issue or are following a specific diet.

Did you make this recipe? Please leave a comment and/or star rating! Email us with any questions: tamara@beyondmeresustenance.com

🥭 Recipes That Use Homemade Tajín

Below you’ll find a few of my own recipes that use tajín, but if you love the spice blend, you won’t want to miss What to Put Tajín On! It’s a collection of 24 delicious ideas for how to use tajín…

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15 Comments

  1. Thank you for introducing us to crystallized lime powder. Not only is this delicious in your homemade Tajin powder but fabulous in drinks and more. Love Tajin on sliced mango.

  2. Low sodium Tajin is probably our favorite seasoning and we use it on almost everything, (including burgers and fries). We love this stuff! Also True Lime powder is a staple in our house, ( It has so many uses.) so I will defintely try making my own chili lime seasoning with your recipe!

    1. Awesome! I hope you like it as much as we do! When I first came up with the recipe, the Tajin brand didn’t include a low sodium version, which motivated me to come up with the recipe. We try to watch our sodium intake.

  3. Made this last night and turned out so good. I didn’t have the lime powder, but I did have fresh limes — used some of the zest. So, so good!

  4. This stuff is fantastic! Of course it’s incredibly good on mangos, but you really need to try it on cantaloupe. Wow! Just experiment with this tajin on fresh fruit in general.

    1. Hi Christine! If you can’t find lime powder, it’s a decent (and probably the only) substitute. The lime powder provides lime flavor rather than just tartness, and that is why I recommend it. If you can’t get it, by all means use citric acid. Citric acid definitely provides the sour taste, but not necessarily lime taste. I also prefer all natural products. Citric acid encompasses a whole lot of products, and not all are food grade and 100% natural. I should put in the notes that it’s a good substitute with instruction on what kind to get. Thank you!

  5. Thank you for the recipe & your great article. I recently discovered this stuff, love it! Need less salt & less waste.

  6. Have never seen crystalline lime powder but I’ll be looking for it. I love this spice mix. Have never made it and I’m not sure if I’ve ever had it, but I can already taste it. Thanks for sharing! Over the years I’ve added more and more homemade spice mixes to my pantry and am looking forward to adding this one.