Enchilada Sauce

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This Enchilada Sauce recipe has been a very popular recipe for a good number of years!  Skip the canned stuff and make this homemade enchilada sauce (double the recipe, if you’d like).  Use it in all of your recipes that call for canned enchilada sauce.

Homemade Enchilada Sauce

I don’t know about you, but I don’t really care for the enchilada sauce that you buy in the can.  It always seems to have a bit of a metal taste to it.  The flavor isn’t there. It’s just not good.

This recipe is super simple.  It’s not made from fresh tomatoes, so you’ll see canned chicken broth and canned tomato sauce in the ingredient list.  But it’s combined with the right amount of spices, and it turns out a delicious enchilada sauce!

Enchilada Sauce

Here are a few recipes where you will need enchilada sauce:

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5 from 7 votes

Homemade Enchilada Sauce

Much better tasting than the canned variety!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 5 servings (2 1/2 cups)
Calories 143kcal
Course Condiments
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword enchilada sauce


  • 1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • cups low sodium chicken broth
  • One 8-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt


  • Heat the oil in a large skillet to medium heat. Whisk in the flour and chili powder. Reduce heat to medium and continue to whisk until lightly browned. Gradually whisk in the chicken broth, tomato sauce, cumin, garlic powder, onion salt and salt. Stir until smooth, and continue simmering over medium heat about 10 minutes, or until slightly thickened.
  • Serve immediately, or keep in a covered bowl in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


  • If you are preparing this recipe as GLUTEN FREE- just be sure to substitute an alternative thickener in place of the all purpose flour.  Some people use a good GF flour (like Bob's Redmill), and others like to use sweet rice flour. And make sure you are using a brand of chicken broth that is designated as GF (or use water instead).


Serving: 1serving (1/2 cup) | Calories: 143kcal | Carbohydrates: 7g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 661mg | Potassium: 273mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 1145IU | Vitamin C: 3.1mg | Calcium: 19mg | Iron: 1.4mg
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  • Darryl Lindballe wrote:

    Made this tonight. Totally forgot to add the chilli powder. It still turned out really well despite not having any heat to it. Live and learn

  • Debra S wrote:

    Love this sauce! Haven’t gone back to can enchilada sauce every since we tried it. Super easy to make, family loves it, and it’s a lot closer to home made enchiladas then using the can. I even use it for enchilada soup, taco hamburger soup, and Mexican rice dishes.

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Great to hear!

  • Deena wrote:

    We don’t use a lot of enchilada sauce. I like it, but the hubby doesn’t. How long can it be stored for? Ever tried freezing it?

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      I think it should be used within a week’s time, if refrigerated. I haven’t tried freezing it, but it should be just fine to freeze too!

  • MICHELLE wrote:

    This had been my go to sauce for years!

  • Becky Hardin wrote:

    Love this sauce! So good and so easy to make!

  • Kristyn wrote:

    This sauce sounds amazing!! I am excited to try this! We love enchiladas!

  • April wrote:

    I’m so glad I stumbled across this recipe! I love enchilada sauce, but I find the canned stuff to be just a little bit too spicy for my taste. Definitely will be using this recipe!

  • Rachael Yerkes wrote:

    This is sooooo good!

  • Chelsea wrote:

    This is the best enchilada sauce ever!! Seriously sooo obsessed! Thanks for sharing!

  • MJ Larson wrote:

    Chili powder or powdered chilies?

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      Chili powder.

  • Joanne Butler wrote:

    Going to make this tomorrow but I don’t need this much, have you ever frozen this to use again later. Thank you.

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      I have not, but my guess is that it would probably be okay.

  • Tom Barker wrote:

    This is an excellent sauce. Due to stomach issues, I can not eat spicy foods. This sauce is not spicy at all. I never have liked a sauce that burned your face off, so this one works great for me. Will be looking over all your recipies. Keep up the good cooking.

  • Linda Ramirez wrote:

    I know you’re probably tired of answering questions, but I need to know if this recipe can be equally doubled ingredient for ingredient. When I make enchiladas I always make at least two large pans. One for dinner, and one for the freezer. I need at least a quart of sauce. Thanks so much.

    • Lori Lange wrote:


  • Brandy M Pruden wrote:

    I have a question about storing. Can this be pressurized like a normal canning process to be stored (not in the fridge), but in the pantry instead?

    • Lori Lange wrote:

      I don’t know anything about canning, so I’m not sure!

  • Jane Kuhlmann wrote:

    Mmmmmmm I made this to go into the One Pot Cheesy Mexican Lentil, Black Beans and Rice Recipe…its very difficult in Nova Scotia, Canada to find anywhere that sells Enchilada Sauce….so glad I wasn’t able to find it in a store….this homemade version is so delicious! I was eating it by the spoonful….yummy and easy…my kind of recipe ! Thanks !

  • Bet wrote:

    OH MY GOODNESS. OUTRAGOUS best sauce ever. So easy, so tasty. Not hot at all. We don’t like spicy and this was a home run. Thank you so much for sharing.
    I made your easy enchiladas, also excellent. Next I’m going to do beef, bean & cheese, I know this sauce will be so good with them too.