Spicy Enchilada Sauce

Spicy Enchilada Sauce - easy to make at home and only takes 15 minutes!  via KatiesCucina.com

Last month, I had this brilliant idea for a recipe, but the only problem was that I needed enchilada sauce. I was out of the jarred variety and well I didn’t feel like going to the store. That is when I had an ah-ha moment, “wait I can make my own“. My husband looked at me in disbelief… you can make enchilada sauce? Of course, I proceeded to reply in a smart-alic tone… I mean come on. You can make everything yourself (or just about everything). So that’s when I proceeded to spend the following 10 minutes looking at recipes; comparing ingredients and preparation methods.

I did an inventory of all the ingredients on hand. Confirmed that I had everything and got to work. I think I amazed my husband with this one. In less than 20 minutes, our home smelled of Spicy Enchilada Sauce! Truly aromatic, in my opinion. I gave my husband a taste of the sauce and not only was he sold but high impressed. I’m not sure if I will ever use store bought enchilada sauce again. After learning how easy it is to make and then of course tasting the rich deep flavors. Nothing beats the homemade version. I used 1 jar for my Chicken Enchilada Stuffed Peppers (recipe to come), and then saved the rest for ground beef and black bean enchiladas (also to come). I sealed the other two jars up and refrigerated them until the next day when I proceeded to cook more!

Adapted from Emeril Lagasse

Spicy Enchilada Sauce

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 18 minutes

Total Time: 22 minutes

Yield: 3 cups

Spicy Enchilada Sauce


  • 3 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tbsp chili powder
  • 2-1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 12 ounces tomato paste
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt


  1. In a medium saucepan, heat vegetable oil to medium heat then add flour, Stir with a wooden spoon, and cook for 1 minute.
  2. Add chili powder, stir well, and cook for 30 seconds. Then add chicken broth, tomato paste, oregano, cumin, cayenne pepper, and onion powder. Stir to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 15 minutes (the sauce will begin to thicken and smooth out). Serve on enchiladas or store sauce in sealed container for up to 3 days.
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  1. You have me craving enchiladas now! I love this spicy sauce, yum!

  2. I love spicy sauces :) must try this soon!

    • You can add additional cayenne pepper to the sauce to make it even spicier. This one has a mild kick at the end… nothing overwhelming!

  3. This looks amazing! It would make a great gift for a summer party too… And those jars! Love!

    • Thanks Courtney! I never thought to bring this sauce as a summer party gift! Love the idea.

  4. Nikki

    My friend found a similar recipe we both use regularly now. I found that it also makes a great base for making chili!

  5. Thank you for sharing. This looks like a great base for a lot of different recipes. Just curious as to why you say “store up to 3 days”?

    • THanks Susan for stopping by. Since the sauce does not have preservatives to extend its shelf life I like to stay on the safe side and only keep it refrigerated for 3 days. After that you could always freeze any leftover sauce you have.

  6. Thanks for the great recipe. Would it be possible to can this?

  7. Kathi

    Can you freeze it?


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