Ready in only 10 minutes, this easy enchilada sauce is super simple to make and requires no dried chiles! All you need are a few staple herbs and spices in your pantry and you’re good to go!
When you’ve got a craving for some Mexican food but don’t have a jar of enchilada sauce in the pantry, this recipe will save the day!
Ready in only 10 minutes, this recipe is a quick and easy version of the authentic enchilada sauce that my Mom my taught me how to make using whole dried chiles and Mexican chocolate.
Since posting that recipe a few years ago, I’ve realized that not everyone has easy access to those ingredients like I do. So I’ve decided to create a good alternative version that tastes very similar to what I grew up eating and is made with easy to find ingredients that you likely already have!
Let’s get to it!
Easy Enchilada Sauce Ingredients
Here’s what you’ll need for this recipe:
- Olive oil + all-purpose flour: These two ingredients are cooked together to make a roux, which thickens up the sauce just a tad and gives everything a good mouthfeel. (You could also use a gluten-free flour blend instead of all-purpose flour if you want.)
- Spices + herbs: Chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, cumin and dried oregano
- Broth: Chicken or vegetable broth both work
- Tomato paste: This provides a nice velvety tomato flavor with making it too watery like tomato sauce can sometimes do
How to make enchilada sauce in 10 minutes!
- Make a roux by whisking the flour and oil together over medium-high heat. Cook it for about a minute to get rid of any raw flour flavor.
- Add all the spices and herbs into the roux, and whisk it all up. Cook for about 30 seconds. To make the process easier, I like to put all the spices into a small bowl so I can just dump everything in all at once.
- Slowly add the broth while continuously whisking to make sure no big lumps form.
- Add the tomato paste and continue whisking the sauce until it’s completely smooth.
- Bring the sauce to a simmer, remove from heat and that’s it!
Super simple, right?! You can use this sauce right away or store it in a jar in the fridge for up to a week.
You can also freeze the sauce for up to 3 months and use it for later, which is perfect if you make a double batch.
Easy recipes made with enchilada sauce
Aside from using this sauce in enchilada recipes like these red chicken enchiladas and vegetarian spinach enchiladas, it’s also perfect for using in casseroles, soups and more! Here are a few of my favorite recipes you can use it in:
- Easy Red Chilaquiles
- Chicken Tamale Casserole
- Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Quinoa Enchilada Bake
- Low Carb Enchilada Cabbage Rolls
Be sure to check out my recipe for Green Enchilada Sauce, too! Hope you love it!
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (or gluten-free flour blend)
- 4 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 1/4 cups broth (chicken or vegetable)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- In a small pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat.
- Add flour and whisk together for 1 minute.
- Add chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, salt, cumin and dried oregano and whisk together for 30 seconds.
- Slowly pour in the broth while whisking constantly to make sure no big lumps form.
- Add the tomato paste and whisk the enchilada sauce until completely smooth.
- Bring to a simmer, remove from heat and serve.
- Storage – Can be stored in an airtight jar in the fridge for up to a week. Can also be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months.
- Concerned this may be too spicy? Start with using only half of the chili powder and add more to taste.