Always have enchilada sauce on hand with this easy, 20-minute recipe. Can be used as a garnish, dipping sauce, condiment, or as a base for soups or moles.

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Top down view of a mason jar of enchilada sauce, surrounded by bowls of dried herbs.

About Homemade Enchilada Sauce

Enchilada sauce is one of those pantry staples that’s great to have on hand for all types of dishes, and it tastes so much better when made from scratch. This simple recipe comes together in just 20 minutes and is easy to customize to your tastes. You’ll never want storebought again!

What’s in enchilada sauce?

  • Olive oil – Chosen for flavor, but you could use any type of oil that you want.
  • All-purpose flour and chicken broth – Used for creating the roux that thickens the sauce. You can also use vegetable broth instead.
  • Mexican oregano – Different than the oregano you typically see in Mediterranean cuisine, Mexican oregano is made from a completely different plant family and has a flavor with more floral and citrus notes.
  • Tomato sauce and tomato paste – Staples in any type of red sauce.
  • Garlic powder, onion powder, ground cumin, chili powder, salt – For adding flavor and heat. Any one of these spices can be customized to your tastes.

What can you use enchilada sauce for?

Enchilada sauce can be used for more than just enchiladas, such as:

  • As a garnish on other Mexican dishes, like tacos and burritos.
  • Served as a dip with salty chips.
  • Used as a more flavorful substitute for ketchup. Try it on hamburgers, hotdogs, or french fries.
  • Works well as a sauce for two-ingredient slow cooker meals. It pairs well with chicken or pork.
Two mason jars filled with enchilada sauce, surrounded by tortillas an bowls of dried and fresh herbs.

How long is homemade enchilada sauce good for?

Once prepared and cooled, this enchilada sauce can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to ten days.

Can you freeze enchilada sauce?

Yes! This sauce freezes very well.

Once prepared and cooled, this sauce can be stored in a sealed container or freezer bag for up to three months.

TIP: Freeze this sauce in small cubes (like in an ice cube tray) to make it easy to use as garnishes or per-serving portions as needed.

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How to make homemade enchilada sauce

This next part is only a photo tutorial of the recipe steps. If you’re looking for the full recipe measurements and instructions, scroll down to Recipe Details.

Step 1 – In a saucepan over medium heat, create a roux by cooking the flour in warm hot olive oil, then adding the chicken broth. Cook and whisk until the liquid begins to thicken.

Step 2 – Add the rest of the ingredients: tomato sauce, tomato paste, chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, Mexican oregano, and salt. Bring it all to a simmer, then whisk and cook until desired thickness is reached.

Step 3 – Allow to cool.

Step 4– Serve and enjoy!

Recipe Details

Top down view of a mason jar of enchilada sauce, surrounded by bowls of dried herbs.
5 from 1 vote

Homemade Enchilada Sauce

5 mins prep + 15 mins cook
38 kcal
Yields: 20 servings (1/4 cup per)
Always have enchilada sauce on hand with this easy, 20-minute recipe. Can be used as a garnish, dipping sauce, condiment, or as a base for soups or moles.

Ingredients 

Instructions

  • In a large saucepan over medium heat, warm olive oil. Add flour and cook for 1 minute, whisking constantly.
    3 tablespoons olive oil, 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • While continuing to whisk, pour in chicken broth. Cook and whisk until mixture has thickened slightly, about 5-7 minutes.
    1 cup chicken broth
  • Add tomato sauce, chili powder, tomato paste, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, Mexican oregano, and salt. Bring to a simmer and allow to cook for 5 minutes or until sauce reaches desired thickness.
    30 ounce tomato sauce, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, 1/2 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, 2 tablespoons chili powder, 2 tablespoons tomato paste, 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Allow sauce to cool completely.
  • Store or use as desired.

Notes

Recipe makes 5 cups of enchilada sauce.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 38kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 1mg | Sodium: 329mg | Potassium: 166mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 447IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 12mg | Iron: 1mg

I do my best to provide nutrition information, but please keep in mind that I’m not a certified nutritionist. Any nutritional information discussed or disclosed in this post should only be seen as my best amateur estimates of the correct values.

Author: Chrisy