You can easily bring the flavors of your favorite Mexican dishes home with this easy Ranchero sauce — a tomato-based sauce infused with Mexican flavors and sauteed jalapenos, onions, and fresh garlic.
In under 20 minutes, you’ll have a healthy, flavorful sauce perfect for topping all of your homemade Mexican creations! Enjoy this savory sauce on Chicken Flautas, Ranchero Chicken, Breakfast Tacos, and more!
WHAT IS RANCHERO SAUCE?
Ranchero Sauce is a savory, tomato-based Mexican sauce with a hint of smokiness thanks to the cumin. Although it contains hot peppers (usually jalapeños or serranos), it is not necessarily a spicy sauce.
WHAT’S IN IT?
- Hot Peppers (Jalapeños or Serranos)
- Spices (Salt, Pepper, Cumin, and Paprika)
RANCHERO SAUCE VS. ENCHILADA SAUCE
Enchilada sauce (or Rojo Sauce) is not the same thing as Ranchero Sauce, although both are used to top enchiladas. Confusing, right? They look almost identical, but you’ll find enchilada sauce is heavy on the chili powder and the tomato flavor much less pronounced.
HOW TO MAKE RANCHERO SAUCE
Homemade Ranchero Sauce is simple to make and requires only a few ingredients. To begin, you’ll sauté the onions and jalapeños until softened and then add in the garlic. The garlic quickly cooks and in goes the tomatoes, along with your spices.
The mixture simmers for a short time on the stovetop to allow all those flavors to marry, and the sauce it ready!
QUICK RECIPE OVERVIEW
- Saute diced onions, peppers, and garlic on the stovetop
- Add the canned tomatoes and spices.
- Simmer 10 minutes.
SERVE IT SMOOTH OR CHUNKY — YOUR CHOICE!
You can serve this sauce chunky or smooth. If you’d like a smooth sauce, you could use an immersion blender, a blender, or a food processor to puree it.
WANT TO HEAT THINGS UP?
Just because this sauce isn’t typically spicy, doesn’t mean you can’t add a little heat. If you’d like to spice it up, simply omit de-seeding the peppers.
IS IT HEALTHY?
Ranchero Sauce in and of itself is a healthy sauce full of vegetables. It’s what we smother with it that’s typically the calorie culprit.
WHAT TO SERVE IT ON
Ranchero Sauce is most popular and well-known is for topping Huevos Rancheros, a Mexican dish in which corn tortillas, beans, and over-easy eggs are topped with cheese and Ranchero Sauce. But, the fun certainly doesn’t stop there.
This zesty Mexican sauce is also served on top of:
- Chili Relleños (we use it here in our Chili Relleno Casserole!)
It’s a family-friendly sauce that goes with almost anything and makes pretty much everything better.
5 MORE MEXICAN RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE
- Chuy’s Salsa Fresca is an easy, homemade salsa recipe, that tastes just like the beloved Tex-Mex restaurant Chuy’s famous salsa fresca.
- Tamale Sauce is a quick-fix, cheesy sauce that reigns supreme with its Tex-Mex flare and kick of spice! It’s the perfect consistency for dipping or drizzling over tamales, but can also be used for enchiladas, burritos, chimichangas and more!
- Tex-Mex Beef Enchiladas features a foolproof enchilada gravy and a flavorful beef enchilada filling smothered in cheese and baked to perfection!
- Homemade Beef Chimichangas are loaded with a savory ground beef filling and topped with a quick and easy stovetop queso! Plus, tips for frying to perfection and more.
- Chicken Verde Enchiladas are a gluten-free dinner recipe featuring shredded chicken, Monterrey Jack cheese, corn tortillas, and a green sauce with sour cream.
A quick and easy recipe for Ranchero sauce — a tomato based sauce infused with sauteed vegetables like jalapenos, onions and fresh garlic.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1/2 of a white onion diced
- 3 jalapenos stemmed, seeded and diced
- 1 clove of garlic minced
- 28 ounces whole peeled tomatoes preferably San Marzanos
- 1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
Add the olive oil to a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in the onion and jalapeño and sauté for about 5 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic and sauté 1 minute more.
Carefully pour in the tomatoes and using the back of a wooden spoon, crush the tomatoes. Stir in the salt, pepper, cumin, and paprika. Reduce the heat to medium and allow to simmer 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
For a smooth sauce, transfer the contents of the saucepan to a blender or food processor. Remove the feed tube (to prevent a build-up of steam and pressure), cover with a dish towel and process until smooth. Serve and enjoy.
Makes 2 cups. About 3 tablespoons per serving.