It’s been a holiday tradition in my family to make homemade gifts for friends, coworkers, teachers and neighbors during the holiday season. Several years ago, my mom inspired a new edible treat that makes a perfect signature holiday gift: Homemade Steak Rub.
In this post I’ll will:
- Give tips for choosing a spice jar
- Help you determine and calculate your batch size
- Explain where to get the best deals on spices
- Provide a free, printable label for your gift
Choosing a Spice Jar
First up, you need to find a good spice jar. The first time I made these was pre-Amazon, and I had a hard time finding packaging that would suit my discerning tastes and limited budget. I searched high and low, online and off for a suitable choice. I went between plastic and glass, big and small, round and square.
Two main things to look for when choosing a spice jar are style and capacity. I was on a budget so I tried to find jars that were 3 oz. or less. Most standard spice jars are 4 oz. By choosing 2.8 oz. and 3 oz. jars I saved money on spices.
I ended up finding two nice solutions at World Market. They didn’t have enough of each in stock, so I got 12 of one and 10 of the other. In terms of look, I loved the rustic/farmhouse look of the metal lidded jars. The white worked out well though too. The jars were the perfect size and the right price!
Now, you can find many more options on Amazon and at other online retailers. I’ve put together a few of my favorites based on look and price in the carousel below.
Purchasing the Spices
Before purchasing spices, it’s important to figure out what size batch you’re making to understand how much you’ll need of each ingredient.
Here is a cheat sheet for how many ounces you need of each spice depending on your spice jar size and how many you’re making.
|Ingredients||12 4oz. Jars||24 4oz. Jars||12 3oz. Jars||24 3oz. Jars|
|Kosher Salt||18 oz.||36 oz.||13.5 oz.||27 oz.|
|Black Pepper||6 oz.||12 oz.||4.5 oz.||9 oz.|
|Chili Powder||6 oz.||12 oz.||4.5 oz.||9 oz.|
|Garlic Powder||6 oz.||12 oz.||4.5 oz.||9 oz.|
|White Sugar||6 oz.||12 oz.||4.5 oz.||9 oz.|
|Rosemary||3 oz.||6 oz.||2.25 oz.||4.5 oz.|
|Thyme||1.5 oz.||3 oz.||1.125 oz.||2.25 oz.|
|Paprika||1.5 oz.||3 oz.||1.125 oz.||2.25 oz.|
While the original recipe (listed below) uses tablespoons and teaspoons, spices are sold by the ounce so I converted them to make buying (and measuring bulk quantities) easier.
Dollar Stores and Walmart sell spices in bulk for a fraction of the cost of regular grocery stores. If you are making large batches, I also suggest checking out Sam’s or Costco.
If you want to make it easy, simply add these ingredients to your cart (all on Walmart.com) to have all the ingredients you need to make 24 4 oz. spice jar! Important Note: Add TWO of the rosemary. It comes in larger sizes but in this case it made sense to buy two of this size rather than buying in bulk.
How to Make Texas Steak Rub
Making the steak rub is the easiest part. My mom found a recipe for Texas Steak Rub (below) and we’ve honed it to make it a perfect balance of spices suited to our tastes.
First, start by washing and drying all the spice jars. While they’re drying, start the mix.
Begin by measuring and mixing all the ingredients into a large bowl. To make this easier, you can use a kitchen scale to precisely measure out ounces.
Next, whisk them together so they are well blended.
Lastly, pour the mix into each of the spice jars using a funnel.
Packaging Your Steak Rub
Lastly, you will need to design and print labels for the spices. I wanted something with a vintage yet Texas-like look. I ended up using free fonts, including Mouse Deco, EcuyerDAX and Cheboygan, all available at dafont.com.
I designed two labels: one for the front, and one with directions and ingredients for the back. You can download an editable PDF to customize the city and state for yourself. Just make sure you have the Cheboygan font installed first!
Download Free Texas Steak Rub Labels (Full Page)
Download Texas Steak Rub Labels (Avery Circles)
Cutting the labels was tedious but made easier by the help of my Fiskars straight edge cutter. (I originally made these back before Silhouettes were invented! Today I’d use the print and cut functionality to cut these out with my Silhouette Cameo.)
I experimented with how to adhere my labels to the jars, and after failed attempts with hot glue, a glue stick and double sided tape, I hit up Google to see how other crafters had solved this problem. Luckily, I found the perfect solution! Xyron makes a product that allows you to make a sticker out of any shaped object. Since my labels were small, they fit perfectly into the 1.5 Inch Create-A-Sticker maker. Just run the labels through the x-shaped device and you get a perfectly sticky label!
If you aren’t feeling like taking that extra step, simply print these onto Avery Kraft Sticker Paper.
I finished the gifts off with a raffia bow for a little extra holiday flare. I was so happy with how they turned out and my coworkers were very impressed! I got nice notes from a few friends commenting that the steak rub was delicious, so it’s a good bet that the recipe is worth trying again!
Texas Steak Rub
- 1 tbsp Kosher salt
- 1 tsp Black pepper
- 1 tsp Chili powder
- 1 tsp Garlic powder
- ½ tsp Rosemary
- ¼ tsp Thyme
- 1 tsp White sugar
- ¼ tsp Paprika
- Mix ingredients together stir well.
- Rub spice mixture on each side of steak at least 30 minutes before grilling.