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This Homemade Red Enchilada Sauce is low carb, keto-friendly, gluten-free, and tastes so authentic you would think you were eating at your favorite Mexican restaurant!
Looking for more low carb and keto sauce recipe ideas? Give this Authentic Tzatziki Sauce Recipe or Cilantro Lime Crema a try!
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I moved to Southern California when I was 14 and pretty much lived on Mexican food, and I am not talking about American/Mexican food. I am talking about truly authentic, sitting at Abuela's kitchen table with the heavenly smells of machaca or carnitas cooking away, and tortillas hot off the stove.
That my dear friends is pure heaven.
Actually, when I think about it, my love for Mexican food goes back even further. My babysitter, when I was very young, was a wonderful woman that had been an elementary school teacher in Chihuahua Mexico.
Ohhhh the food this woman would make. I loved her homemade refried beans, and sopapillas, and especially her red chile enchiladas.
At 4 years old I loved huevos rancheros for breakfast and lived for her chicken tostadas or bean burritos at lunch. She would have me help in the kitchen every day making homemade flour tortillas or stirring one pot or another.
If I really think about it, she is probably the person that put the love of cooking fresh food in the back of my young mind.
But, as I have mentioned, my Mom wasn't a big cook from scratch kinda gal. We usually ate something from a box, or a can, or the freezer for dinner. So, after I went off to school, those lovely homemade Mexican delights were just a memory.
Sadly, our red chile enchilada sauce came from a can, and that was that.
Fast forward to now, and my desire to separate me from as much over-processed food as possible.
I have mastered the art of a low-carb mac and cheese, making a killer spaghetti sauce, making a mean keto cream of mushroom soup, and am quick to the rescue if someone is feeling under the weather with this low carb lemon chicken noodle soup.
I have even ventured into Mexican flavors with homemade chorizo, pico de gallo, and one damn good salsa fresca. But just haven't been able to nail down my enchilada sauce.
You will find that the majority of homemade red chile enchilada sauces call for chili powder, and that works alright. But the issue is that any "chili powder" you buy in a store is a blend of different spices that you have no control over or idea about, what they are, how much is used, or how old the powder is.
Some call for tomato paste or even ketchup, and I am not knocking them. They work in a pinch and are 100% better for you than the stuff from a can.
Butttttttttttttttttttt.....and it is a big ol' but, they do. not. taste. authentic.
So why was that?
Cue the big giant light bulb over my head
You need to use "real" chiles, not jarred powder.
And the difference?
Ooohhhhh it is huuuuuuuuuuuge....colossal......ginormous!!
And the proof is in this sauce.
Oh ya, baby, it brings all of those flavors that I have been dreaming about. The flavors I have tried to find at every Mexican restaurant around.
I am not going to lie, I cried a little tear when I tasted it #dontjudgeme
However, I cried quite a few more tears when it was all gone
Next time I will make a quadruple batch so I can freeze some for later because I do not want to be without this sauce on hand.......EVER!!
P.S. Even Kevin liked it!!
INGREDIENTS NEEDED TO MAKE HOMEMADE RED ENCHILADA SAUCE
- Dried New Mexico or California red chiles
- Chicken bone broth (or water)
- Mexican oregano
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
Place dried chiles in a large pot of water, and bring to a boil.
Remove the stems and seeds from the chiles and place them in a food processor with the remaining ingredients. Process until very smooth.
Pass the sauce through a strainer or double layers of cheesecloth to remove the skins of the chile. Use a rubber spatula (or your hand) to press it well.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
Use immediately or place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator or freeze it.
Last thoughts about Homemade Red Enchilada Sauce
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Red Chile Enchilada Sauce (Keto and Gluten-Free)
- 4 ounces dried New Mexico or California red chiles stems and seeds removed * See Notes
- 2 cups chicken bone broth (or water) *See Notes
- 1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 2 teaspoons organic garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon organic onion powder
- pink salt
- cracked black pepper
- Place dried chiles in a large pot of water, and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, and place a plate or bowl on top to make sure the chiles stay submerged in the hot water. Allow the chiles to steep for 30 minutes.
- Remove the stems and seeds from the chiles and place them in a food processor with the remaining ingredients. Process until very smooth.
- Pass the sauce through a strainer or double layers of cheesecloth to remove the skins of the chile. Use a rubber spatula (or your hand) to press it well.
- Taste and adjust the seasoning if needed.
- Use immediately or place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator or freeze it.
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I made this about a year ago, and it was an excellent sauce, but it was SO SPICY I couldn't eat it. I removed the seeds and everything! Any tips on making it less spicy?
Bobbi | Bobbi's Kozy Kitchen
Hi, I am sorry the sauce was too spicy for you. I am not sure which chile you used. New Mexico chiles, while considered a mild heat chile, are a bit hotter at 800-1,400 SHU (Scoville Heat Units) and more flavorful than the California Chiles (500-1,000 SHU). If you used New Mexico chiles I would suggest you try the California chiles. I have not made this sauce with any other chiles but the California (which is basically an Anaheim pepper dried) is pretty mild.