Easy homemade enchilada sauce (vegan)

This easy homemade enchilada sauce is the only enchilada sauce recipe you need. It is a great fridge staple to quickly make healthy and delicious Mexican dishes. This recipe is vegan, and you can make it as spicy as you want.

Vegan homemade red enchilada sauce
Authentic red enchilada sauce with tomato sauce and chipotle chili powder.

About this recipe

This easy homemade enchilada sauce recipe is straightforward to make and is a total lifesaver when life gets hectic. It’s a great starter to make enchiladas, burritos, chilaquiles, or migas  – anything Mexican. I usually prepare it in large batches, store it in the fridge, or freeze it.

How to make enchilada sauce?

  • Sauté the aromatics. Add the tablespoon of oil and the onion in a saucepan over medium heat. When the onion is translucent, add the garlic and leave for three minutes. Be careful not to let it burn.
  • Add the spices. Add the dried oregano, ground cumin, chipotle powder, and salt. Leave for a minute or until the aroma of the spices is released.
  • Tomato sauce. Add the tomato puree and water; some splatter may happen. Be prepared to clean (have a Bona Mop and Bona surface cleaner).
  • Blend. Using a food processor (affiliate link) or a blender, liquefy until completely smooth.

How to use the homemade red enchilada sauce?

As I mentioned, this enchilada sauce is so versatile that it can work in many ways: you could use it to make enchiladas, an enchilada casserole, or as a base for a soup, or even as simple salsa for nachos, chilaquiles, quesadillas, or burritos.

want super easy and flavorful enchiladas?

Grab a baking dish (affiliate link) and put this enchilada sauce in a spoonful or two. Roll up warm corn tortillas filled with brown rice, black beans, and greens. Place them on the enchilada sauce, pour more sauce on top, and bake for 20 minutes. Serve with diced avocado, chopped cilantro, and sliced red onion. And there you go, dinner under 30 minutes.

Easy enchilada sauce recipe most asked questions

How to store the red enchilada sauce?

Store in glass jars in the fridge or freeze in a freezer-safe container. It will last up to 5 days in the fridge and up to 3 months in the freezer.

What types of chiles can I use?

You can use ground ancho chile or guajillo chiles. Use ground dried chiles or whole dried chiles. If you are using whole, soften them in hot water for a couple of minutes before blending.

Is enchilada sauce vegan?

Yes, this recipe is suitable for vegetarians and vegans. Traditional enchilada sauce is always vegan, but some people use chicken or beef broth to thin it out.

How spicy is the enchilada sauce?

It depends, but one of the benefits of making homemade enchilada sauce is that you can control the spiciness.

Tips & Tricks for a clean home

The only downside of making this enchilada sauce recipe is that it is messy to prepare. That is when having Bona® Premium Spray Mop for Hard-Surface Floors and Bona PowerPlus Antibacterial Surface Cleaner comes in handy.

  • CLEAN AS YOU GO. Do not wait until the end to clean and pick up everything you used. Have a good mop and your surface cleaner on hand, always. I use Bona® Premium Spray Mop for Hard-Surface Floors because I love the combination of a good floor cleaning solution and a good microfiber cleaning pad. Also, it is so easy to use… spray, wipe, and you’re done. You have clean floors without dust, dirt, or grime, and NO residue. Bona products are safe for my family and pet.
  • HAVE A TRASH BOWL. I always have a bowl beside my cutting board when I start cooking. All the scraps, empty cans, empty jars, etc. go in there. This makes picking up so much faster!
  • BUY THE RIGHT CLEANING PRODUCTS. Buy cleaning products that are safe to use on most or all of your surfaces, products that are ready to use, and eliminate grease and grime. I like to use Bona PowerPlus® Antibacterial Surface Cleaner, which uses hydrogen peroxide to power through tough stains and germs.
Vegan homemade red enchilada sauce

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Easy homemade enchilada sauce

Super easy to prepare, vegan, healthy and easy enchilada sauce.
5 de 1 voto
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
0 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Basics
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 3 cups
Calories 120 kcal


  • Blender or immersion blender


  • 1 tablespoon oil with a neutral taste I use avocado oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
  • cups tomato puree
  • cup water


  • In a saucepan add the tablespoon of oil and the onion. When the onion is translucent add the garlic and leave for three minutes. Be careful not to let it burn.
  • Add the oregano, cumin, chipotle, and salt. Leave for a minute or until the aroma of the spices is released.
  • Add the tomato puree and water. Mix well and simmer on low for five minutes.
  • Test and adjust seasoning if necessary.
  • Using a food processor or a blender, liquefy until completely smooth.
  • Store in jars in the fridge or freeze.


This recipe calls for chipotle chile powder, but feel free to use any othe ground chili or chili powder mix that you like.


Calories: 120kcalCarbohydrates: 18gProtein: 3gFat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 1gSodium: 832mgPotassium: 690mgFiber: 4gSugar: 9gVitamin A: 887IUVitamin C: 18mgCalcium: 61mgIron: 3mg
Keyword enchilada sauce, mexican sauces


Nutritional information of this recipe is only an estimate, the accuracy for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

Did you make this recipe?Tag @piloncilloyvainilla on Instagram and hashtag it #brownsugarandvanilla so we can all see your creations.

Bona® sponsors this post; the recipe, pictures, and opinions are all mine.

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1 month ago

Hi. Thank you for the recipe. What is the difference between tomato purée and tomato sauce? Can I use tomato sauce instead?





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