Homemade Enchilada Sauce

In my entire life I’ve purchased two cans of enchilada sauce, both expired before I could use them.  For some reason every time I would see them I would push them aside thinking I’d use them next time.  Last night I made chicken enchiladas and decided to make my own sauce, I mean it doesn’t exactly seem like a difficult sauce to make.   was correct, it was super easy and quite honestly, super delicious.

On top of how easy it was to make it’s a very forgiving recipe that still works with substitutions as well as being customizable.  It’s all about what works for your taste.

For the Recipe:

4 dried New Mexico chiles

1 large onion, quartered

3 cloves of garlic

1 28 oz. can tomatoes, I’ve also used fresh and it works great

2 tsp. dried oregano

1 tbsp. dried cumin, cumin is a very strong flavor, I would start with less than 1 tbsp. then add more during the “tasting”, if needed

1 tbsp. salt, start with 2 tsp. then add more during the “tasting” if needed.

1 tsp. pepper

1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper, adjust to suit your taste


Deseed the dried chiles, and dry roast them in a pan.  They will soften up as they get warm, however, don’t walk away when you do this as they can burn quite quickly.  Flip them over so all sides are roasted.  Then drop them into two cups of hot water to soften, let sit for about 10 minutes.  Add all ingredients (including the chiles AND the water they were soaking in) into a blender and blend until it has reached a nice sauce consistency, no chunks.  Next, pour into a large sauce pan and cook down until it has reduced by about 1/4.  You will want to taste it about halfway through the cooking to check for salt and cumin.  The canned tomatoes used can vary in saltiness which is why I suggest adding only half in the beginning.  Once it has reduced by roughly 1/4 it will be thicker and ready for use.  This makes quite a bit of sauce so you can always reduce the recipe or do as I do and freeze half for later.






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