No need to buy pre-made enchilada sauce with this tutorial for homemade enchilada sauce from just a jar of tomato sauce! Just mix on the stovetop and you have enchilada sauce ready in under 10 minutes for a delicious base for your next Mexican fiesta!
While I’m certainly not thrilled about our current global situation (my emotions vacillate from panic, to fear, to deep sadness) I have been working to try and find the pockets of joy throughout my day. From the flowers blooming on our property, to the excessive use of my label maker there are definitely things to feel good about. One of those things is how much more time I’m spending in the kitchen. To be honest, I probably spend more time in the kitchen than the average person (it’s part of my job after all!) but cooking- and more specifically – getting innovative with simple pantry ingredients has in some ways become the highlight of my day.
This homemade enchilada sauce is no exception! It can easily be made from a jar of tomato sauce and a spice blend that most of us have at home. So if you’re out of enchilada sauce or the store is sold out, this enchilada sauce recipe has got you covered!
Ingredients in Homemade Enchilada Sauce
- 1 jar of tomato sauce – a standard 24 ounce jar works perfectly
- Olive oil – or a neutral oil like vegetable oil or avocado oil
- Flour – regular all-purpose flour
- Spices: chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin
How to Make Homemade Enchilada Sauce
Add olive oil to a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Drop a little flour into the oil and if it sizzles it’s ready for the flour. Slowly add the flour and use a whisk to incorporate into oil. Pour in tomato sauce , spices, salt and pepper and water. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil and then lower to a simmer until mixture thickens.
Suggestions + Tips
Use a mild tomato sauce – Try to use the most mild tomato sauce you can find. I know we’re all working with what we have on hand so don’t stress if all you’ve got is truffle-infused mushroom and basil tomato sauce (although that sounds fancy so you may want to save it lol) but generally this tastes better with a more mild marinara sauce or basic tomato sauce.
Blend if desired – If all you have is a can of diced or crushed tomatoes you can absolutely use that in place of the tomato sauce. However, depending on how chunky the canned tomatoes are, you may want to use an immersion blender (or a regular blender) to get that creamy consistency. It won’t change the flavor though so work with what you got.
Use gluten-free flour – if you’re gluten-free, you can easily substitute a gluten-free flour blend in place of all-purpose flour
How To Store Homemade Enchilada Sauce
Your enchilada sauce will last in the refrigerator for up to one week. However I’ve been making extra and freezing an extra batch. Just store in an airtight container in your freezer for up to 6 months. Be sure to label and date your homemade enchilada sauce!
I take mine out the night before to allow it to thaw or you can let thaw slightly and heat up over the stove-top or microwave before using.
My Favorite Enchilada Recipes
- The Best Chicken Enchiladas
- Vegetarian Enchilada Bake
- Slow Cooker Enchilada Casserole
- Chicken Enchilada Soup
- Black Bean Enchiladas
- Beef Enchiladas
Homemade Enchilada Sauce
No need to buy premade enchilada sauce with this tutorial for homemade enchilada sauce from just a jar of tomato sauce! Just mix on the stovetop and you have enchilada sauce ready in under 10 minutes for a delicious base for your next Mexican fiesta!
- Prep Time: 0 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 10 minutes
- Yield: 4 cups 1x
- Category: Dinner
- Method: Cook
- Cuisine: Mexican
- Diet: Vegan
- 1/4 cup olive oil (or other neutral oil)
- 1/4 cup flour (gluten-free flour also works)
- 1 jar of tomato sauce (24 oz)
- 2 tbsp chili powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 cup water
- Add olive oil (or neutral oil) to a medium sauce pan and bring to a boil.
- Drop a little flour into the oil and if it sizzles it’s ready for the flour. Slowly add the flour while whisking to incorporate into oil.
- Add tomato sauce , spices, salt and pepper and water. Stir to combine.
- Bring to a boil and then lower to a simmer until mixture thickens.
- If tomato sauce is chunky feel free to blend with an immersion blender or in a tabletop blender. This is optional.
- Allow to cool and store in an airtight container for up to 1 week or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Use in place of store-bought enchilada sauce where desired.
Keywords: homemade enchilada sauce
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NatheMay 24, 2022 at 6:24 pm
I tried to bring the oil to a boil in step one, but then it smoked and caught fire. Other than that tasted great. I didn’t measure any of the ingredients.
BrookeMarch 14, 2022 at 8:55 am
When does the 1 cup of water come into play?
Davida LederleMarch 16, 2022 at 11:02 am
You add it when you add in the tomato sauce + spices!
MonicaFebruary 15, 2021 at 2:42 am
Such a good idea! So easy and turned out delicious
Davida LederleFebruary 17, 2021 at 10:31 am
So happy to hear that, Monica!