Looking for a tasty taco sauce with healthy ingredients? Look no further! I couldn’t find one I liked; so I started making my own. Besides taste, I needed it to be healthy, without ingredients, such as potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate, potassium chloride, yeast extract, and natural flavors. I found a recipe that I modified to fit my nutritional needs and I have been loving my taco life ever since because this is the real deal!!!
Those who know me, know that I TRY to avoid anything canned. Sometimes the canned is the only thing I can afford, but this is especially true for affordable tomato sauce. I prefer to eat things out of glass bottles or carton. Canned foods usually contain extremely high levels of Bisphenol A, or BPA, a chemical used as protective coating inside of the cans. BPA has been linked to a host of major health problems, such as breast cancer, prostate cancer, diabetes, obesity, learning disabilities and other neurological problems (Google this! It’s worth knowing). When buying anything canned, look for a label that says “BPA free.” If it doesn’t and that’s all you can afford, then pray, pray, pray! God is all we got and He knows. FYI: For tomato sauce, the Muir Glen Company began transitioning their tomato products to BPA free cans in September 2010, decreasing the shelf life of these products to 2 1/2 years. Consequently, an expiration date after March 2013 should have a BPA-free liner that is the color of copper (the old BPA liner is white). Remember for those of you who cook, you can also make your own tomato sauce and store it in mason jars.
I used to make this with Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar with the Mother, but I have since substituted the lemon juice in its place. Lemon juice is a great substitute for any type vinegar, but sometimes you have to adjust the taste. Sometimes I will use 3 Tablespoons of lemon juice and 1 Tablespoon of apple juice. Sometimes I would add a pinch of vitamin C powder (citric acid) to up the tartness of a recipe. You have to make a recipe and play with the taste at times. However, a good rule of thumb is that vinegar and lemon juice can often be substituted on a 1:1 ratio. Now, is apple cider vinegar (ACV) with the Mother bad? My answer would be that I still use Bragg’s ACV with the Mother medicinally because this vinegar has an alkalining effect upon the body, unlike white distilled vinegars, and it cuts through gray matter inflammation like you wouldn’t believe! Medicinally, this vinegar was once used to save my life. When I get time one day, I’ll relate that testimony. Until then…
Taco Sauce (Mild)
- 1 (32 ounce) quart tomato sauce (no chunks)
- 1 1/3 cups water
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 2 tablespoons cumin
- 2 tablespoons instant minced onion
- 4 tablespoons lemon or lime juice
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic salt*
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon cane sugar (or 3/4 teaspoon honey or agave)
- 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- Place all ingredients into a sauce pan, stir well, and bring to a boil. Turn down heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes.
- Remove and cool. Pour into the jar.
- May be kept in refrigerator for several days. (I get two 3 cup jars out of this. I always freeze one jar).
*You can make your own: Combine 3 Tablespoons sea salt and 1 Tablespoon garlic powder. You’ll have some garlic salt left over. If you jar it in a glass jar, you might want to put a cheesecloth bag of rice in there to keep the moisture away. It will cake up otherwise.