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Easy Tomato Enchilada Sauce Recipe

A no-fuss tomato enchilada sauce that’s perfect for your next Fiesta Friday. All you need is a few ingredients and saucepan to create your own spicy sauce!

Whether you prefer Taco Tuesday or Fiesta Friday, there’s no denying your love for all things Tex-Mex.

We’re the same way, although, what we make may change from time to time. On some occasions I’ll make shredded beef tacos or Kim will make grilled chicken quesadillas.

It simply depends on what we want at that particular moment. However, when we eat enchiladas, there’s only one sauce we’ll use and that’s our tomato enchilada sauce.

It’s smokey, spicy and perfectly balanced to our taste buds. That’s the best part about a recipe like this one, you can modify it to taste the way you want.

The tomato enchilada sauce in a mason jar accented with jalapenos.

I invite you to try it out on your own and find that perfect balance of chili, cumin, and garlic. So, how about we get started?

How to make tomato enchilada sauce:

All in all, the whole recipe only takes about ten minutes from start to finish. Usually, when Kim and I are making dinner together, one of us preps the chorizo enchiladas, while other makes the sauce.

The flour and oil cooking in a medium sized saucepan.

First, grab a medium size saucepan and place it over medium heat. Add the oil to the pan and let it heat for about thirty seconds.

After that, sprinkle in the flour. Whisk together the mixture and let the flour cook for two to three minutes.

The spices have been added to the cooked flour and oil.

Then, toss in all the spices and allow them to cook for another thirty seconds. At this point, you can pour in the broth and tomato sauce.

  • You can use chicken, beef, or vegetable broth. Usually, the broth we use depends on the type of enchiladas we’re making (chicken broth for shredded chicken, beef broth for shredded beef, etc.).
An aerial view of the mixed ingredients simmered in a saucepan.

Use your whisk once more to combine everything into a rich tomato enchilada sauce. All that’s left to do, is let it simmer until the sauce reaches a thickness you like. That’s it your dish is done.

Pour it over the prepped enchiladas or mix it with some prepared minute-rice to create your own Mexican rice for a side dish. Kim and I hope you enjoy the recipe and wish you all the best 🙂

A close-up photo of the sauce to show viewers the spices.

Why doesn’t my enchilada sauce look like the pictures?

So, this question hasn’t come up yet, but I suspect it will in the future. The only reason I’m bringing it up is because our enchilada sauce looks different from time to time as well.

Well, Kim figured out that the color of the final product will differ based on the amount and brand of chili powder that is used in the recipe.

For example, an inexpensive store brand powder creates the slightly orange color you see in the pictures.

However, a higher quality chili powder creates a deep, dark red sauce. Kim and I think this has to do with the chili pepper that was used to make the powder.

Also, it may have to do with how much of the pepper makes it into the powder (i.e. cheaper brands using more filler ingredients).

Regardless of the reasons, we wanted to make you aware that the brand of powder you select will affect the color of the sauce.

A spoonful of the sauce held over the opened mason jar.

Tomato Enchilada Sauce Tips:

  • If you happen to have any lumps of flour in the sauce, don’t panic. It can be easily fixed by straining the sauce through a sieve or strainer.
  • You can make this recipe gluten-free by using gluten-free broth, flour, and spices.
  • Also, if you use vegetable broth instead of chicken broth, then the sauce is also vegetarian.
  • One way to thin it out this easy enchilada sauce is to add more broth (a tablespoon at a time) until you find a thickness you like.
Yield: 4 Servings

Tomato Enchilada Sauce Recipe

A spoonful of the sauce held over the opened mason jar.

A no-fuss tomato enchilada sauce that's perfect for your next Fiesta Friday. All you need is a few ingredients and saucepan to create your own spicy sauce!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes


  • 2 Tablespoons Cooking Oil, (olive or vegetable)
  • 2 Tablespoons All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 Tablespoons Chili Powder, (add more for extra spicy)
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt
  • ½ Teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • ¼ Teaspoon Oregano
  • ¼ Teaspoon Cumin
  • 1 Cup Chicken Broth, (or vegetable broth)
  • 8 Ounces Tomato Sauce


  1. Heat the oil over medium heat and whisk in flour until to combined. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Add salt, garlic powder, oregano, and cumin. Whisk to combine and cook for an additional 30 seconds.
  3. Add chicken or vegetable stock and tomato sauce.
  4. Whisk and ensure flour and spices are evenly distributed.
  5. Continue to cook over medium heat until sauce reaches desired thickness.
  6. Pour sauce over prepared enchiladas and bake.
  7. Save any unused portions in a jar or other airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients and a serving size of about half (1/2) a cup enchilada sauce. Actual calories will vary. The sauce can be stored in a sealed container, in your fridge, for up to three (3) days.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

0.5 Cup

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 105Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 1gUnsaturated Fat: 0gSodium: 869mgCarbohydrates: 9gFiber: 2gSugar: 3gProtein: 2g

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Little Cooking Tips

Friday 8th of September 2017

This. Is. So. Awesome! Mexican food is an oddity here in Greece, but we can definitely use this amazing sauce in countless other recipes like in sandwiches, gyros, casseroles or beans. Can't wait to try this, thank you!


Friday 8th of September 2017

Thank you! We are thrilled you like the recipe and hope you put it to good use. Thank you again for commenting and we wish you a lovely weekend :)

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