Ancho Chile Enchilada Sauce Recipe

by valentina on November 23, 2012

Post image for Ancho Chile Enchilada Sauce Recipe

My favorite thing to do with leftovers is to crack an egg over them — over easy, please.  And that’s what I suggest you do today with your  Thanksgiving leftovers!

I know you’ve likely been cooking all week — and guess what?  — we’re carrying on over here at Cooking On The Weekends!  That’s just what we do. (And by “we,” I mean me!)

Today we’re heading in a totally different culinary direction — towards Latin American cuisine.

Yup, we’re making Ancho Chile Enchilada Sauce.  It’s quick, easy, delicious, and great to have on hand, as its smoky, rich flavor enhances everything it’s added to.  And we’ll be using it is to make Roasted Ancho Chile Potatoes next week.  Yum!

Isn’t is gorgeous!?

Ancho Chile Enchilada Sauce

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Yield: Makes 3-3/4 cups


About 5-ounces dried Ancho chiles (about 5 large chiles)


1 cup cooking liquid (reserved -- see recipe instructions)

1 cup vegetable stock

4 small garlic cloves, peeled and smashed

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground oregano

1/2 teaspoon ground cloves

1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1 teaspoon sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoons olive oil

  1. Place the dried chiles in a medium-sized sauce pot and add enough water to cover them.
  2. Bring the water to a boil and then cover the pot and remove it from the heat. Let the chiles hydrate in the hot water for about 20 minutes.
  3. Remove 1 cup of the water from the pot and pour it a blender.
  4. Then remove the chiles from the pot. Use your hands or a paring knife to gently remove the stems and seeds. Then add the chiles to blender.
  5. Add the stock, garlic, spices, sugar, salt and pepper.
  6. Purée until the sauce is completely smooth. This should take about 1 minute.
  7. Pour the sauce into a storage container and stir in the olive oil. (The sauce should keep for at least 3 weeks in an airtight container in the refrigerator.)


If you don't have a blender, you can use a knife to finely chop the hydrated, dried chiles until they are as close to a purée as possible.

If you want more heat in your sauce, don't remove all of the seeds from the chiles.

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Sophie November 24, 2012 at 8:54 am

What an amazing, tasty & well flavoured chile sauce! I love it!

I hope you celebrated a lovely Thanksgiving!


Deb November 24, 2012 at 6:07 pm

After the butter inducing coma of Thanksgiving your Ancho Chile Sauce is just the antidote to all the rich, decadent holiday food! I’m thinking a spoonful n those eggs you mentioned would be divine!


sippitysup November 25, 2012 at 4:19 pm

Yes let’s all head south for the day after the day after Thanksgiving! GREG


valentina November 26, 2012 at 5:32 am

let’s! ;-)


Bijouxs November 26, 2012 at 1:02 am

Beautiful Valentina! Can’t wait for the potatoes! “/Bijouxs


valentina November 26, 2012 at 5:32 am

thank you, Lynn xo


Clair November 27, 2012 at 4:35 am

Does it freeze well?


valentina November 27, 2012 at 4:51 am

Hi Claire, I haven’t tried freezing this before but I think it would freeze well in an airtight container, with a layer plastic wrap gently pressed directly on the surface of the sauce. Let it thaw overnight in the refrigerator. Enjoy!


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