What Are Southwest Seasonings?


Southwestern cuisine combines flavors from Mexican, Native American and Spanish cultures. Some popular southwestern entrees include tacos and burritos. The spicy flavors are often combined with the tortillas and other flour and corn-based products. Large cuts of meat are often used, with beef, chicken and pork being popular. Although there is no official recipe for southwestern seasoning, there are ingredients that are typically used.


  • People who enjoy spicy flavors will love southwestern seasoning for its use of common peppers. Cayenne pepper and crushed red pepper offer an unparalleled fiery taste. Chili powder, derived from the chili pepper, is another ingredient used with a zesty appeal. Paprika, which can range from sweet to spicy, is a pepper indigenous to the Western hemisphere. Black pepper is another pepper often used as a southwestern seasoning ingredient.


  • Garlic is a pungent ingredient used in southwestern seasonings. There are different forms of garlic spices used, such as garlic powder or garlic salt. Fresh minced garlic can also be used in the tangy seasoning.


  • Cumin is an herb in the parsley family. Although it is commonly derived from Iran and India, it is used in many Mexican dishes. This is why the herb has landed a place in southwestern seasoning recipes. Cumin has a warm flavor, which complements the spicy flavors of the peppers.

Other Flavors

  • Salty flavors complement spicy flavors, which is why salt is almost always used in southwestern seasonings. Minced onions and onion power can also be used, in addition to coriander, oregano, basil and thyme. Citrus can be added for a more tangy twist to southwest seasoning. Lime flavor or juice is the most common citrus flavor used, but lemons are used as well.

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