Quick and Easy Homemade Enchilada Sauce Recipe

Enchiladas smothered in homemade enchilada sauce
Enchiladas photo by Jupiter Images / Getty Images
  • 30 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins,
  • Cook: 25 mins
  • Yield: serves 8 - 12
Ratings (19)

The basic ingredients in homemade enchilada sauce recipe are tomatoes and lots of seasonings. This quick and easy Mexican recipe uses tomato paste to keep it simple, but, judging by the number of positive recipe reviews, it's just about perfect.

Try this recipe for a quick and easy homemade enchilada sauce recipe and make your own home made vegetarian and vegan enchilada sauce instead of using the canned stuff, which is usually full of a huge amount of added sugar, sodium, and, occasionally MSG and chicken fat (don't believe me? Read the label!). If you've never made your own homemade enchilada sauce before, it really isn't too much work using a recipe like this one, which uses canned tomato paste, and, it isn't too much work, especially considering just how much better it makes your meal!

Use your homemade enchilada sauce to make these vegetarian portabella mushroom enchiladas or try these vegetarian black bean and vegetable enchiladas. You can also use this sauce in just about any recipe that calls for enchilada sauce, such as this vegetarian Mexican casserole recipe. 

This Mexican food recipe is both vegetarian and vegan. Use a gluten-free flour as a thickener if you need it to be gluten-free as well. 

    What You'll Need

    • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
    • 2 tbsp flour
    • 2 tbsp chili powder
    • 1/2 tsp cumin
    • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, or to taste
    • 2 cups water
    • 1 8 ounce can tomato paste
    • 1 tsp garlic powder
    • 1/2 tsp onion powder
    • 1/2 tsp salt

    How to Make It

    Over medium-low heat, heat the oil, flour and chili powder together in a large pot. Allow to cook for a minute or two, stirring to form a paste and making sure that the flour doesn't burn.

    Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a slow simmer. Stir well to combine and dissolve tomato paste in water.

    Allow to cook for at least 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste, and add more spices as desired.

    This recipe makes an enchilada sauce with a consistency which I find perfect for using in just about any homemade enchilada recipe. However, if you're using it for something else or you'd like prefer a slightly thinner or thicker sauce, you can adjust the amount of water you add.