It’s super easy to go to the store and buy chili powder, right? Right. So why am I showing you how to make your own chili powder? I started making my own chili powder almost a year ago for a variety of reasons and so many people said “I never thought of making my own chili powder” so I thought I’d share why I do and how easy it is for you to make your own also.
4 Reasons I Make My Own Chili Powder
A friend is allergic to garlic powder. This proves difficult when making chili and other recipes that include chili powder. Making my own chili powder means we can all enjoy the same dishes with the signature flavor chili powder adds.
We add salt to everything. That’s great. Salt is a wonderful flavor enhancer. It adds something to almost every dish we eat but it is also easy to overdo. My dad always taught us to use a light hand with salt – to use it to bring out flavors without overpowering. So many people over salt and quite honestly, it’s addictive. Your taste buds adjust to the flavor and you add more. Is it any wonder many of us are ingesting too much? I like to keep ingredients as pure and simple as possible and add salt to the dish without it already being incorporated in other added components more than necessary.
Store-bought chili powder goes through processing and delivery then can sit on store shelves for a while before ending up in our cabinets for even longer. It gets stale, losing flavor, and we don’t even realize it as we use it in recipes. Once you make your own chili powder you will see just how much the flavor improves in your favorite recipes and how much better freshly made chili powder tastes.
The final reason I love making my own chili powder is because I can control the heat level. I like to make a variety of mild to spicy chili powders. This means I can skip adding hot sauce to recipes, make a mild chili when serving a group with a wide range of palates and use a spicier chili powder when making it for our family or guests who like spicy food.
What You Need to Make Your Own Chili Powder
**Please note I include affiliate links below.**
- Mortar and Pestle (I recommend 6 inches or larger)
- Chili Peppers (I use Don Enrique Brand from Melissa’s Produce. In full disclosure they sent me several packages of peppers when I told them I wanted to experiment with making my own chili powder)
- Spice jars or 4 oz. canning jars
- Fine mesh sieve (optional – see video below)
How to Make Your Own Chili Powder
Here is the quick step-by-step tutorial on how to make your own chili powder. For an extra little tip using the fine mesh sieve and an easy visual, see the video below.
- Break chile peppers up a bit.
- Shake seeds into a separate bowl or jar (save for your own crushed red pepper flakes)
- Use the mortar and pestle to grind up the dried pepper flesh into a powder. This will take a while but can be done a little quicker using the tip in my video. Also, I have found it works better if you add a little at a time rather than overfilling the mortar.
- You can put some of the smaller pepper flakes into the container holding your pepper seeds for crushed red pepper flakes.
While it does take a little time to grind dried chile peppers down into a powder, I believe you will find the end result worth it. You will have freshly made chili powder that is allergy-friendly, sodium-free, and packing so much more flavor.
Let me know in the comments below if you tried making your own chili powder. How did it work for you?