Learn how to make homestyle enchilada sauce from scratch with minimal ingredients. Wholesome, personalized, and great substitute for the store bought version.
Enchilada’s are such a favorite in our home. Easy to quick make up, throw in the oven, and dish up, this meal is a winner for sure. But the enchilada sauce that you can get at the store, personally I think it leaves a lot to be desired. It just is lack-luster and basic. I like to also have more ability to personalize my food’s flavors. I feel like with the store bought version, there are flavors that are out of my control.
And when it comes down to it, the ingredients to enchilada sauce aren’t all that complicated. So why wouldn’t I make the switch to making it at home?? Plus, if you can and preserve tomatoes, you likely have a good deal of tomato sauce on hand which is the base ingredient. So, let’s dive in shall we?
Ingredients for Homestyle Enchilada Sauce
The base of a good red enchilada sauce is, yup, you guessed it… tomato sauce. I make homemade tomato sauce and can it every year. It’s a basic tomato sauce, no spices or extra ingredients. Just simply tomatoes. If you don’t preserve your own tomato sauce every year, don’t sweat it. Tomato sauce from the store will more than do the trick. I use a pint jar of tomato sauce to get somewhere between 6 and 10 enchilada’s depending on how you put them together. So about 16 ounces of tomato sauce.
The next ingredients are actually a range of ingredients. Personally, I use a combination of chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne flakes/powder, and a pepper powder combination (Anaheim, jalapeño, and poblano).
Pepper Powders and Flakes
Pepper powders and flakes are a great way to add flavor to your enchilada sauce, especially if you like a little bit of a zing to your enchilada’s. I tend to make beef enchilada’s, so having a little spice is something that I prefer.
If you don’t prefer having a spicy enchilada, then you may want to dial back how much pepper powders you put in.
What if You don’t have Pepper Powders & Flakes?
Before I started making my own pepper powders, I actually just used a combination of chili powder, taco seasoning, garlic powder, and onion powder. This is a little less of a novel flavor and leans itself towards the store bought enchilada sauce, in my opinion. It’s still good and make a really easy recipe to remember.
How to Make Homemade Enchilada Sauce
To make homemade enchilada sauce, first add 16 ounces of tomato sauce to a sauce pan. Add your spices to the tomato sauce and whisk together. I then heat this mixture on a medium heat just until the sauce starts to bubble. I find that this step, while some may consider it unnecessary, actually helps the flavors meld together before you stick the enchilada’s in the oven. Since they really don’t spend a lot of time in the oven, the flavors don’t meld as nicely. By taking this extra step ahead of time, the sauce just really pops.
My typical enchilada ingredients, besides the sauce, are beef, cheddar cheese, and chopped onion.
If you don’t like beef, some good other options are chicken, pork, and black beans. All of them lend some protein to the dish.
Homestyle Enchilada Sauce
An easy red enchilada sauce that has a mellowed zing.
- 16 ounces ( 2 cups) tomato sauce
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 TBS pepper powder
- 1/4 tsp cayenne powder/flakes
- 1 TBS chili powder
- Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan. Whisk to combine.
- Place on medium heat. Stir frequently.
- When mixture begins to bubble, turn heat to low until you are ready to assemble enchilda's.
If you don't have the different pepper powders, simply use the onion powder, garlic powder, chili powder as recommended above as well as 1 TBS taco seasoning.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 159Total Fat: 5gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 6mgSodium: 1352mgCarbohydrates: 24gFiber: 6gSugar: 15gProtein: 5g