Vegan Enchilada Sauce Recipe (Quick & Easy) - Shane & Simple

How to make Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce

As of my last update, I do not have any specific information about “Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce.” However, using the principles from similar sauce recipes, a general introduction to quick vegan red enchilada sauce might be as follows:

Introduction to Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce:

Quick vegan red enchilada sauce is a savory and essential component in many Mexican-inspired dishes. It is designed to bring the traditional flavors of enchilada sauce to the table without the use of any animal products, catering to those who follow a vegan lifestyle or prefer plant-based eating.

This sauce typically has a tomato and chili pepper base, which provides its signature red color and a balance of sweetness, tanginess, and heat. To achieve a rich and complex flavor profile without relying on meat-based stocks, vegan recipes often incorporate vegetable broth or water along with a carefully selected blend of spices like cumin, chili powder, garlic, and onion.

For added depth, some recipes may suggest roasting the tomatoes or chili peppers before blending them into the sauce. Others could include smoky elements like chipotle in adobo to simulate the umaminess often associated with non-vegan sauces. Thickening the sauce might involve using plant-based flours such as wheat or gluten-free options, or even cornstarch to reach the desired consistency that clings well to tortillas.

Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce Recipe

Vegan Enchilada Sauce Recipe (Quick & Easy) - Shane & Simple

Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce

Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce is a plant-based condiment that captures the traditional flavors of Mexican cuisine in a cruelty-free and healthy manner. It primarily uses tomatoes and chili peppers for its base, giving it a natural red color and a balance of sweet, tangy, and spicy notes. Essential elements such as vegetable broth or water, spices like cumin, chili powder, garlic, and onion, plus a thickening agent like flour or cornstarch, are used to create a rich and complex flavor profile suitable for various dishes.
Vegan adaptations replace any animal-derived components with vegan options, such as plant-based oils instead of lard. This sauce can be prepared at home, allowing for customization and the exclusion of preservatives found in store-bought versions. When thickening the sauce, gluten-free alternatives can be utilized to cater to those with dietary restrictions.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Course Sauce
Cuisine Italian
Servings 7 serving
Calories 50 kcal


  • 1 large skillet
  • 1 blender
  • 1 air tight container


  • 3 tbsp vegetable broth
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled and smashed
  • 1 cup white or yellow onion finely chopped
  • 7 mild dried chilies like Guajillo
  • 1 dried arbol chilies remove stems
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tsp ground smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp dried oregano


  • Heat a large skillet over medium heat, add vegetable broth once heated, add onion, garlic and cook for, stir often until slightly browned, for about 4 minutes.
  • Add dried chilies and let it cook for 2 minutes, turn and cook for another 2 minutes and then add the vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low heat, cover the skillet and let simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Add cumin, tomato paste, paprika, oregano and salt to the skillet, stir, cover and cook until peppers are soften, for about 5 minutes.
  • Transfer to a bowl of a blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Taste and make adjustment as needed.
  • Serve sauce you want immediately or store in an air tight container and keep in the fridge, use within a week or freeze and use within a month.
Keyword cloves garlic, vegetable broth

Cooking Tips about Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce

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  • Start with Quality Ingredients: Use ripe tomatoes or good-quality tomato paste as they are crucial components for taste. If using chili peppers, choose ones that suit your preferred level of heat.
  • Sauté to Enhance Flavor: Begin by sautéing garlic, onions, and spices like cumin and chili powder to deepen their flavors before adding them to the sauce.
  • Blend for Smoothness: If you want a silky texture, blend your sauce after cooking. An immersion blender can do this directly in the pot, or you can carefully transfer the sauce to a countertop blender.
  • Adjust Thickness: Depending on the application, you might prefer a thinner or thicker sauce. If it’s too thick, add a bit more vegetable broth; if it’s too thin, simmer it longer or use a thickener like cornstarch mixed with water.
  • Balance with Sweetness and Acidity: Find a harmony between the sweetness and acidity by adjusting with a small amount of sweetener or vinegar. This can round off the sharpness of the tomatoes and complement the heat from the chili peppers.
  • Simmer to Merge Flavors: Let the sauce simmer for at least 20 minutes to allow the flavors to meld together properly. The longer it simmers, the more developed the taste will be.
  • Season Well: Don’t forget to season your sauce with salt to taste, and possibly pepper, ensuring all the flavors pop.
  • Give It Heat: If you like a spicier sauce, don’t hesitate to add in some cayenne pepper, or for a smoky note, a bit of chipotle in adobo.
  • Cool Before Storing: If you plan on storing the sauce, allow it to cool completely before transferring it to an airtight container. It can typically be kept in the fridge for up to a week or frozen for longer storage.
  • Experiment with Aromatics: While onion and garlic are standard, consider adding bell peppers, roasted red peppers, or even carrot puree for different subtleties in flavor.

Serving suggestions about Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce

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  • Traditional Vegan Enchiladas: Roll up your favorite fillings—such as black beans, sweet potatoes, spinach, or vegan cheese—in corn tortillas. Smother them in the red enchilada sauce, and bake until bubbly.
  • Enchilada Casserole: Layer tortillas, your choice of vegan fillings, and ample red enchilada sauce in a casserole dish. Repeat the layers like a lasagna and bake until heated through.
  • Tofu Scramble: For a breakfast twist, you can mix this sauce into a tofu scramble to give it a Mexican flair. Garnish with avocado, fresh cilantro, and a squeeze of lime.
  • Mexican Pizza: Use the sauce as the base for a Mexican-inspired pizza topped with vegan cheeses, jalapeños, and black olives before baking to perfection.
  • Burrito Bowl: Drizzle over a bowl of rice, beans, corn, greens, and avocado for a quick and easy burrito bowl.
  • Nachos: Pour this tantalizing sauce over a pile of tortilla chips loaded with vegan cheese, black beans, guacamole, and vegan sour cream.
  • Stuffed Peppers: Add a spoonful into bell peppers filled with rice, beans, corn, and spices, top with more sauce, and bake.
  • Chilaquiles: Briefly cook tortilla chips in the sauce until they begin to soften, then top with vegan queso fresco, onions, and cilantro for an authentic Mexican breakfast.
  • Soup Base: Kick-start a pot of Mexican soup by using the enchilada sauce as a flavorful base, adding in your preferred vegetables and legumes.
  • Dip: Combine the enchilada sauce with vegan cream cheese to make a zesty dip for chips or veggies.

Top 5 FAQs about Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce

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  • What are the key ingredients in Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce? The primary ingredients for a Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce include tomatoes and chili peppers for the base, vegetable broth or water, plant-based oils, and a blend of spices such as cumin, chili powder, garlic, and onion. A thickening agent like flour or cornstarch is also common, with the option of using gluten-free alternatives for those with dietary restrictions.
  • How do I make my enchilada sauce thicker without using traditional flour? To thicken the sauce without traditional flour, you can use cornstarch mixed with a little cold water to create a slurry that will thicken the sauce when added while cooking. Another gluten-free option would be to use arrowroot powder in the same way.
  • Is it possible to make Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce without oil? Yes, you can make the sauce oil-free by sautéing the vegetables and spices in a small amount of vegetable broth or water instead of using oil. This technique helps to reduce the fat content in the sauce while maintaining the flavor.
  • Can Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce be frozen for later use? Yes, Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce can be frozen. Allow the sauce to cool completely, transfer it into an airtight container or freezer bag, and freeze it for future use. It can typically be kept in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • How long does homemade vegan red enchilada sauce last in the refrigerator? Homemade vegan red enchilada sauce can last in the refrigerator for up to a week when stored properly in an airtight container. Ensure it is cooled completely before storing to maintain its freshness and prevent bacterial growth.

In conclusion, Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce is a flavorsome, easy-to-prepare condiment that brings authentic Mexican taste to a variety of dishes while adhering to vegan dietary guidelines. Created with a blend of tomatoes and chili peppers for its base, combined with aromatic ingredients like garlic and onions, as well as a thoughtful selection of spices, this sauce celebrates the richness of traditional enchilada sauce in a plant-based form.

The quick cooking process does not sacrifice depth or complexity; by sautéing, blending, and simmering, the flavors meld together beautifully, capturing the essence of a sauce that typically takes much longer to prepare. This speedy variant proves convenient for busy home chefs aiming to deliver high-quality meals without a significant time investment.

Whether used to smother enchiladas, as a topping for tacos, or as a base ingredient in other creative vegan dishes, Quick Vegan Red Enchilada Sauce serves as a testament to the versatility and adaptability of vegan cuisine. It demonstrates how easy and delicious it can be to enjoy traditional tastes while maintaining a conscious and cruelty-free lifestyle.


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