Ancho Chile Enchilada Sauce

Ancho Chile Enchilada Sauce Recipe

Ancho Chile Enchilada Sauce is the best red enchilada sauce recipe ever! It's just spicy enough, and it's full of warming spices that will have you licking your plate. And this Ancho chile sauce is so versatile -- it can be added to all sorts of recipes!

*Makes about 2 1/2 cups

Course Condiments, Sauces
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword Mexican sauces, using dried chiles
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 20
Calories 28 kcal
Author Valentina K. Wein


  • 4 ounces dried Ancho chiles
  • water
  • 1 cup cooking liquid, reserved (see recipe instruction no. 2))
  • 1 cup vegetable stock
  • 4 small garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • a few turns freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil


  1. Place the dried chiles in a medium-sized sauce pot and add just enough water to cover them. Bring the water to a boil, and then cover the pot and and turn off the heat. Let the chiles hydrate in the hot water until they're soft, at least 20 minutes.

  2. Remove 1 cup of the water from the pot and pour it in a blender.
  3. Remove the chiles from the pot. Use your hands or a paring knife to gently remove the stems and seeds. Add the hydrated chiles to the blender. (If you're very sensitive to the heat, I suggest wearing cooking gloves.)

  4. Add the stock, sugar, garlic, spices, salt and pepper to the blender. Purée in the blender until the mixture is as smooth as possible.

  5. 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.)