Enchilada Sauce


This speedy homemade enchilada sauce only takes about 10 minutes to cook, but it tastes authentic and is full of Mexican flavor. Use it to make your favorite enchiladas, wet burritos, or any dish that calls for canned enchilada sauce.

Prep Time:
10 mins
Cook Time:
11 mins
Total Time:
21 mins

This quick and easy enchilada sauce recipe is loaded with zesty seasonings that make every bite a zippy, spicy delight. Hundreds of reviewers have given this homemade enchilada sauce a 5-star rating — cut out the canned stuff and create an enticingly tangy condiment that can be used in a number of Southwestern-inspired dishes.

enchilada sauce in a white bowl garnished with a cilantro sprig

What Is Enchilada Sauce?

Traditional enchilada sauce is the foolproof solution to any dinner dilemma. Ground cumin and garlic powder infuse the tomato-based sauce with tons of bold flavor that pairs well with meats, cheeses, soups, and casseroles. It's a rich and smoky sauce that adds depth to any dish it touches.

How to Make Enchilada Sauce

Making mouthwatering enchilada sauce at home couldn't be easier — this recipe comes together in just 20 minutes. You'll find the full recipe below with step-by-step instructions, but here's what you can expect when you make this top-rated recipe:

Begin by heating oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in chili powder and flour until thoroughly combined, then incorporate tomato sauce and other seasonings. Cook for 10 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened. Your homemade sauce is ready to add incredible flavor to a range of Tex-Mex dishes.

Enchilada Sauce Variations

Red enchilada sauce is the most commonly used. This rich concoction gets its flavor from tomatoes, chili powder, and other spicy seasonings.

Green enchilada sauce follows the same basic formula but adds fresh green chiles for a brighter taste.

Westernized white enchilada sauce is usually dairy-based and uses cream soup or stock to deepen the flavor.

How to Store Enchilada Sauce

Homemade enchilada sauce will last up to 7 days in the refrigerator if properly stored. Keep in an airtight container for best results. Be aware the mixture may thicken in the fridge — use broth or water to thin to your liking.

Allrecipes Community Tips and Praise

"Excellent!" raves TC. "Be sure to NOT use the run-of-the-mill chili powder — it'll ruin it. I used New Mexico Chili Powder, fresh garlic (sauteed with the flour), and some cayenne for a little kick. Superior to the canned stuff, by far."

"I just made this sauce and actually can't wait to try it once it has sat overnight," shares home cook Blondie in CA. "I too doubled the garlic, used regular flour, and added approximately one teaspoon of sugar to this recipe. Love how easy it is to make! Hubby loves it."

"Absolutely delicious!" says kpierce. "So simple and I had all the ingredients at home!!

Editorial contributions by Rai Mincey


  • ¼ cup vegetable oil

  • ¼ cup New Mexico or California chili powder

  • 2 tablespoons self-rising flour

  • 1 ½ cups water

  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce

  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin

  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder

  • ¼ teaspoon onion salt

  • salt to taste


  1. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in chili powder and flour, reduce heat to medium, and cook until fragrant and deepened in color, stirring constantly to prevent the flour from burning, about 1 minute.

  2. Gradually stir in water, tomato sauce, cumin, garlic powder, and onion salt until smooth. Continue cooking over medium heat until thickened slightly, about 10 minutes. Season with salt.

    high angle looking into a jar of enchilada sauce with a spoonful being pulled out
    Dotdash Meredith Food Studios

Nutrition Facts (per serving)

116 Calories
10g Fat
7g Carbs
1g Protein
Nutrition Facts
Servings Per Recipe 6
Calories 116
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10g 13%
Saturated Fat 2g 8%
Sodium 408mg 18%
Total Carbohydrate 7g 3%
Dietary Fiber 2g 9%
Total Sugars 2g
Protein 1g
Vitamin C 6mg 30%
Calcium 31mg 2%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 232mg 5%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

** Nutrient information is not available for all ingredients. Amount is based on available nutrient data.

(-) Information is not currently available for this nutrient. If you are following a medically restrictive diet, please consult your doctor or registered dietitian before preparing this recipe for personal consumption.

You’ll Also Love