This is a rich, flavorful red enchilada sauce. Pour over your favorite enchiladas and you're all set.


Recipe Summary

5 mins
15 mins
20 mins
3 cups


Original recipe yields 8 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and saute for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the onion, oregano, chili powder, basil, ground black pepper, salt, cumin, parsley, salsa and tomato sauce.

  • Mix together and then stir in the water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes.

Nutrition Facts

27 calories; protein 0.7g; carbohydrates 2.5g; fat 1.9g; sodium 191.6mg. Full Nutrition

Reviews (710)

Read More Reviews
919 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 625
  • 4 star values: 199
  • 3 star values: 48
  • 2 star values: 23
  • 1 star values: 24
Rating: 2 stars
My mother is Mexican (born and raised) and immigrated to the US when she was 15. My inlaws are also Mexican who immigrated 30 years ago. This sauce is sooo NOT like anything my mom or my inlaws would ever make. The sauce was 1. Too runny 2. Way too sweet 3. Tasted like italian pasta sauce. I tried to fix it by adding some chopped jalapenos and some splashes of tabasco sauce, but my enchiladas tasted like I made them with ragu. On the possitive end, I think this is a good base and will try again with some modifications. Also, I think this is kid friendly and would be something young kids and non spicy tolerant people might enjoy. Sorry, I hate giving bad reviews but I appreciate the sharing! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
I am so glad I read the other reviews before I made this dish. This recipe makes an excellent enchilada sauce with a few changes: 1) use tomato paste instead of sauce 2) use chicken broth instead of water 3) blend the salsa to make it smooth 4) double the chili powder and 5) cook the sauce for several hours, adding broth to maintain a smooth consistency. I made this sauce with Gerry's Chicken Enchiladas, also on this site. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
First let me start by saying I am 1/2 Hispanic 1/2 White. This does NOT taste authentic as far as enchilada sauce goes, it DOES however taste really really good. Usually when I try any new recipe here I'll tweek it a bit to my own taste. This is so far the only recipie I have ever come across that I did NOT want to change anything. It is great !!EDIT: I have used 1 can of tomato juice and ommited paste/water. If you do it this way, I'd suggest a long simmer.Also my choice is CALVIN AND CLEOS™ salsa. Tried Pace™/Old El Paso™, even my own home made, but commercially, theres tasted best in at least this recipe. Be warned, the awsome smell it creates may drive you crazy for a while....dang it I'm hungry now ...Gonna make some again this weekend.............. Quick recipe. Make enchilada filling from 2lb hamburger, 1 medium onion, 1lb velveeta cubed, or shredded, and about 1/2 cup of this sauce, roll your filling up,Pour about a cup on the bottom of a 9x13 pan, Place rolled enchiladas in cake pan, pour the rest of this sauce over it all, and top with shredded cheddar, bake for 30 min @ 350. YUMMMM. Read More
Rating: 1 stars
If you really like Mexican food authentic Mexican food don't use this recipe. It tased more like an Italian sauce nothing near an enchilada sauce. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
This recipe is a keeper. Like other reviewers I will no longer be using canned enchilada sauce. I never liked using it because it has MSG in it. Now I can make my own MSG-free sauce. I did cut the chili powder in half since my family does not like real hot things. It turned out to be the perfect amount of spice for us. The first time I made this I used tomato sauce and it was very watery. The second time I made it I used tomato paste. I noticed the recipe called for 6 ounces of tomato sauce. Since sauce comes in 8 ounce cans and paste comes in 6 ounce cans I decided to try it with the paste. It worked out so much better!!! The sauce was not watery like when I used the tomato sauce. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I have been using this recipe for about 6 months and it is the best enchilada sauce I've ever had. True in flavor and fairly easy to make. I normally double or triple it so I can freeze the extra for future use (even better reheated). I let it simmer for about an hour or two just to get it to a thicker consistency and let the flavors meld. I always add some crushed dried chipotle chile pepper and it adds a great smoky flavor. Also a bay leaf or two- just don't forget to take them out before serving. This is a keeper for life- Thanks!! Read More
Rating: 4 stars
I made sure to read other reviews before starting. I also decided to use tomato paste rather than sauce. I measured out the 1 1/2 cups of chicken stock and added slowly until the sauce had the right consistency (about 1 1/4 cups). I didn't care for the chunky texture the salsa gave so I used a hand blender to smooth out the sauce. I have to say this was so easy and I will not bother to purchase canned sauce any longer. Read More
Rating: 5 stars
My husband dozed off to sleep dreaming of this sauce after a wonderful cheese enchilada dinner. Thank you so much! I added about 2 tsp. of chicken boullion to the water and used about 1/2 cup of fresh Texas 1015 sweet onion. For the enchiladas we lightly fried corn tortillas keeping them soft and filled them with grated colby/jack cheese and more of the sweet onion. We drenched the pan of rolled enchies with this superb sauce topped with monterrey jack and baked at 400 until bubbly (10 minutes). Read More
Rating: 5 stars
I thought the flavor of this sauce was great though I did double the chili powder. And do we think the cook really meant to use tomato paste? I think yes as the 6oz amount refers to the can size of tomato paste. If she had meant sauce then wouldn't she have said 8 oz? I made it with the tomato paste and used 2 cups water and it was just right. Read More