Canned green enchilada sauce is just kind of sad. It’s watery and usually not very flavorful. Authentic green enchilada sauce is a little bit of a project, involving roasting fresh tomatillos, onions, garlic, and peppers—not something I necessarily want to be doing in addition to making the rest of dinner on a busy weeknight. I needed something in between. A rich and flavorful green enchilada sauce that was still super fast and easy. So I crafted this super easy Green Chile Enchilada Sauce, based on my Easy Homemade Red Enchilada Sauce, but with a green chile base and a slightly different mix of spices. If you love my red enchilada sauce, I think you’re going to enjoy this one just as much!
What is in Green Enchilada Sauce?
Green enchilada sauce is a mix of roasted peppers, onions, garlic, tomatillos, and spices. If you want to try an authentic recipe, give this Green Enchilada Sauce from Isabel Eats a shot. But as I mentioned in the intro, I was looking for convenience without sacrificing a lot of flavor. So I swapped out the fresh roasted peppers, onions, and garlic for canned green chiles and dried spices. I also add a little oil and flour for thickening power. On days when I have time to cook for fun, I’ll probably make my enchilada sauce the real way, but this quick version will be my go-to most of the time!
Is This Sauce Spicy?
It can be. Canned green chiles can vary in heat level. The canned diced green chiles I purchased from Kroger were completely mild, but depending on the brand, they may have a little heat. If you want to make your green enchilada sauce spicy, you can always add a pinch or two of cayenne pepper.
How Do You Use Green Chile Enchilada Sauce?
Enchilada is great for so much more than just enchiladas! It’s also great for:
- Combining with eggs, tortilla chips, and cheese for chilaquiles or migas
- Drizzled over tacos
- Stirred into sour cream for a creamy-tangy chip dip
- Smothering burritos
- Mixed into mayo to use as a green chile coleslaw dressing
Can I Skip the Flour?
Yes, if you need to make this sauce gluten-free, you can skip the flour. The flour-oil combo does help thicken the sauce, but you’ll still have a wonderfully flavorful sauce without it, just slightly less viscous.
Easy Green Chile Enchilada Sauce
- 2 4oz. cans diced green chiles $1.58
- 2 Tbsp cooking oil $0.08
- 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour $0.02
- 1 tsp ground cumin $0.10
- 1/2 tsp garlic powder $0.05
- 1/4 tsp onion powder $0.02
- 1 cup water $0.00
- 1/2 tsp salt $0.02
Add the canned green chiles (with any liquid in the can) to a blender and purée until smooth. Set the puréed chiles aside.
Add the cooking oil, flour, cumin, garlic powder, and onion powder to a small sauce pot. Stir and cook over medium heat until it begins to simmer and bubble up. Continue cooking and stirring for about 1 minute to toast the flour and spices.
Carefully add the water and puréed green chiles to the oil, flour, and spices in the sauce pot. Whisk the mixture until everything is evenly combined.
Allow the sauce to come back up to a simmer, then add 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste.
Use the green chile enchilada sauce immediately, or refrigerate up to four days.
Scroll down for the step by step photos!
How to Make Green Chile Enchilada Sauce – Step by Step Photos
These are the canned green chiles that I used as the base for this sauce. Some brands are spicy, some are mild (the kind I used are mild).
Add two 4oz. cans of green chiles to a blender (with all the liquid in the can) and purée them until smooth.
Add 2 Tbsp cooking oil, 2 Tbsp all-purpose flour, 1 tsp ground cumin, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp onion powder to a small sauce pot.
Cook and stir the oil, flour, and spices over medium heat until they begin to simmer and bubble. Continue to cook and stir for about one minute to toast the flour and spices.
Carefully add 1 cup water…
Also add the puréed green chiles.
Whisk the ingredients together until smooth, then allow it to come back up to a simmer, stirring occasionally. This should only take a few minutes. Finally, season the finished sauce with 1/2 tsp salt, or to taste.
Use the Green Chile Enchilada Sauce immediately on your favorite enchiladas, or refrigerate the sauce up to four days.