Adobo Seasoning is an all-purpose flavorful seasoning blend commonly used in Caribbean and Latin American Cuisine to enhance the flavor of meats, marinades, vegetables, and more.
What is Adobo Seasoning?
The culinary term adobo stems from the Spanish word adobar, which means to marinate or season.
When used alone, the word adobo refers to a popular Philippine dish that is made by marinating meat in a combination of vinegar, soy, and seasonings and then cooking until tender.
Adobo Seasoning is not a Philippine seasoning. Rather it is an all-purpose spice blend made up of salt and dried spices commonly used in Caribbean and Latin American Cuisine.
This spice blend is a flavorful combination of salt, cumin, oregano, paprika, onion powder, chili powder, and pepper and is used just as you would use a Homemade Dry Rub, Cajun Seasoning, or Seasoned Salt to enhance the flavor of meats, marinade, vegetables, and more.
Why Homemade is Best
- Quality Control. When you make your own spice blends, such as this Adobo Seasoning you have complete control over what you put into your spice blend! Most store-bought spice blends are extremely high in sodium and add anti-caking agents, sugar, preservatives, and sometimes MSG.
- Customization. Making Adobo Seasoning allows you to customize the flavor profile to your personal taste preferences and adjust the added salt as needed.
- Better Tasting. Homemade Adobo Seasoning is so much better tasting than Goyo Adobo Seasoning. It is pure and simple and will enhance your food with flavor, not preservatives.
- Cost-effective. Buying individual spices and making your own homemade spice blends will typically cost you less in the long run than purchasing pre-packaged blends.
Ingredients Needed for Adobo Seasoning
The ingredients in Adobo Seasoning can vary based on region and preference, but this homemade blend is made up of the most commonly used seasonings.
- Kosher Salt: I always recommend using kosher salt over iodized or table salt in seasoning blends. Kosher salt helps to enhance flavors, rather than just leaving them tasting salty.
- Chili Powder: Use regular ground chili powder, not Ancho Chili Powder which can be overwhelming.
- Dried Oregano
- Onion Powder
- Paprika: This recipe calls for regular paprika, not smoked paprika. If you would like a smokey undertone in your seasoning.
- White Pepper: White pepper has a slightly fermented taste and pairs well with the other spices in this Adobo blend. Feel free to use black pepper if that is what you have on hand.
∗ important to remember ∗
When making homemade spice blends, it is best to use spices that are no older than 6 months old, as spices lose their potency and flavor as they age.
How to Make Homemade Adobo Seasoning
In a medium bowl, combine all the ingredients and mix together until everything is well distributed. Easy-Peasy!
To store Adobo Seasoning, transfer the mixture to an airtight container or jar, to keep the moisture out of the seasoning and store it in your pantry for up to 6 months.
Ways to Use Adobo Seasoning
There are endless ways to use Adobo Seasoning, as it is nearly as versatile as salt and pepper.
- As a Seasoning: Sprinkle it over homemade microwave popcorn, air fryer corn on the cob, Instant Pot beans, or rice with Adobo seasoning before serving to add flavor to otherwise simple dishes.
- To Develop Flavor: Add 1-2 teaspoons of this Adobo Seasoning to soups, stews, or chilis to help enhance flavors. It is also delicious tossed with potatoes before making for Baked Fries or Air Fryer Potatoes.
- As a Dry Rub: Use it to rub onto chicken, pork, beef, or tofu before cooking. It makes a great seasoning for Baked Cod, Baked Chicken Breasts, and Air Fryer Pork Chops.
- As a Marinade: Combine this seasoning with oil and an acid, such as lemon juice or vinegar, to create a wet marinade perfect for proteins, like London Broil, or to make vegetable kabobs.
Lower Sodium: Feel free to cut the salt in half or omit it completely if needed.
Garlic Lover: Add 1 teaspoon of garlic powder if you like the flavor of garlic in your seasoning.
More Homemade Spice Blends
- Jamaican Jerk Seasoning
- Homemade Ranch Seasoning
- Homemade Greek Seasoning
- Homemade Cajun Seasoning
- Homemade Taco Seasoning
- Homemade Chili Seasoning
- Homemade Italian Seasoning
If you tried this recipe for Adobo Seasoning, I would love for you to leave a comment and review below.
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon white pepper or black pepper
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon tumeric
- In a medium bowl, combine the salt, paprika, white pepper, onion powder, oregano, cumin, chili powder, and turmeric together until everything is well distributed.
- Transfer the mixture to an airtight container or jar, to keep the moisture out of the seasoning, and store it in your pantry for up to 6 months.