Best Red Enchilada Sauce

READY IN: 40mins
YIELD: 4 cups




  • 1. Rinse the ancho chiles and the chiles de arbol under cold water and pat dry. Remove the stems. Toast the chiles in a dry pan or comal over medium low heat until fragrant. Keep turning the chiles so they don't burn. You can also use a toaster oven, but be sure to watch the chiles closely so they don't burn. I find the toaster oven method easier because the ancho chiles are not flat. Toast the two different types of chiles separately.
  • 2. Sautee onion until translucent. Add garlic and diced tomatoes and saute for another minute.
  • 3. Bring six cups of water and bouillon to a boil and add all of the chiles, onion, tomato, and garlic. Reduce the heat and simmer for fifteen minutes.
  • 4. Transfer the contents of the pan to a blender and add the oregano and cumin. Place a towel over the top of the blender while blending to protect from any splatters. Blend for two minutes until the mixture is very smooth. Be careful because the mixture is very hot. Hot contents can cause the lid to fly off your blender, so just use the towel.
  • 4. Return the contents of the blender back to the pan by forcing the mixture through a strainer with the back of a spoon to remove the seeds and tough bits of chile skin that remain. Don’t skip this step.
  • 5. Simmer the strained enchilada sauce for 15 minutes to blend the flavors. Add salt to taste.
  • This recipe makes about 4 cups of finished salsa. Store the salsa in the refrigerator for 3 days or in the freezer for one month.