Smothered In Red Chile Sauce

Smothered in Red - A collection of dishes smothered in New Mexico red chile sauce #red #chile @MJsKitchen

Every fall we buy either a ristra or a sack of dried red chiles and then use them throughout the year for New Mexico red chile sauce, chile paste, chile infused oils, or to season soups or casseroles. In the early summer I try to use up any remaining pods by making a huge batch of red chile sauce. So with so much sauce now sitting in the freezer, I thought I would gather up a bunch of recipes that use red chile sauce and share them with you in one post.

Let’s start off with the a couple of red chile sauce recipes. The first recipe is chile sauce made from pods, and the second one is red chile sauce made from red chile powder. When I make chile sauce from dried red chile pods, I make a big batch and then freeze it in 1 to 2 cup portions. The red chile sauce from powder recipe makes a much smaller batch (about 2 cups) and is great when you just want to make a single batch and make it very quickly.


New Mexico Red Chile Sauce @MJsKitchen

 New Mexico Red Chile Sauce

made from red chile pods


New Mexico Red Chile Sauce made from chile powder @MJsKitchen

Red Chile Sauce From Powder


I’ve been asked many times “How do you tone down the heat in a red chile sauce?”  Well, if you know from the start that the red chile is TOO hot for your taste, then tone it done with pumpkin pulp.  Here’s my recipe for Red Chile Pumpkin Sauce.

Red Chile Pumpkin Sauce can be used for enchiladas, tacos, burritos, or for whatever your heart desires.

Red Chile Pumpkin Sauce

If after you make the sauce you find it to be too hot, then you could add some sour cream or plain yogurt to it.  A 1:1 ratio of chile sauce to yogurt yields a nice red chile cream sauce.

All of these sauces can be used to smother just about anything.  Here are a few things that I like to smother with red chile sauce:

  • Burritos (Beef, pull pork, chicken, bean, beans and rice, grilled vegetables, scrambled eggs)
  • Enchiladas (several examples listed below)
  • Tostadas
  • Hamburgers
  • Veggie Burgers
  • Eggs
  • Hashbrowns or French fries
  • Tamales

Speaking of tamales…

This red chile chicken tamale is a non-traditional tamale that is easy to make and is just as tasty as a traditionally made tamale.

Red Chile Chicken Tamales

Add some red chile sauce to tamale masa with cooked chicken, wrap in corn husks, and steam.  Serve tamales smothered in red chile sauce!


Some more of my favorite dishes to smother:

Huevos Rancheros with New Mexico Red chile sauce

Huevos Rancheros

A hearty breakfast of fried eggs, on steamed tortillas, topped with chopped onion, cheese, and black olives, and smothered in red chile.  Serve with a side of hash browns or beans.


New Mexico Red Chile Enchiladas - Restaurant Style

New Mexico Red Chile Enchiladas with Onion and Cheese

Corn tortillas dipped in red chile and stacked with onion, cheese, and olives.
Smother with red chile, heat in the microwave for 2 minutes,
top with an egg and enjoy!


Enchiladas with black beans, shiitakes, feta, and red chile sauce

Black Bean and Shiitake Mushroom Enchiladas

Corn tortillas dipped in red chile and layered with sauteed shiitake mushrooms, black beans, feta cheese and onion.  Oh yeah – top with red chile and an egg.

Restaurant style enchiladas with beef, chorizo and red chile sauce

Beef and Chorizo Enchiladas with Red Chile Sauce

Cooked beef and Mexican chorizo wrapped in steamed corn tortillas, smothered with red chile and topped off with diced fresh onion.


A Christmas breakfast with red and green chile sauce

Mexican Chorizo with Red Chile Sauce

For a really, really spicy breakfast – cook up some Mexican chorizo and smother it in red chile.  You’ll need a side of eggs to help calm the fire in your belly.


Southwestern Pileup with New Mexico red chile sauce

Southwestern Pileup with Red Chile Sauce

Pan fry potatoes with onion and bell peppers, add your choice of other ingredients like beans, bacon, green chile, tomato, chicken, or beef.  And what comes next?  All together now …. smother it in red chile  and top it with an egg!


A bowl of pinto beans with an assortment of toppings

Pinto Beans with Red Chile

Serve up a bowl of pinto beans with cheese, fresh tomatoes and onion, lettuce or cabbage, and maybe a touch of sour cream or guacamole.
Finish it off with a big scoop of red chile.

Now let’s put some of those beans in a burrito…

A vegetarian burrito with pinto beans and sweet peppers, smothered in New Mexico red chile sauce |

Fajita-Style Bean Burritos Smothered in red

Pinto or black beans seasoned with chipotle, topped with seared vegetables and your choice of toppings, wrapped in a flour tortilla, and smothered in red.


Southwestern Braised Chicken thighs

Braised Red Chile Chicken with Vegetables

This recipe braises chicken in a tomato-based red chile sauce.  However, when I’m feeling lazy, I just pull some red chile sauce from the freezer and use it, omitting the tomatoes altogether.
A quick and hearty meal.

Last but certainly not least is one of my meaty favorites, Carne Adovado.

New Mexico style carne adovada or pork marinated and slow-cooked in red chile | mjskitchen

New Mexico Carne Adovada

Pieces of pork shoulder marinated overnight in red chile, then slow-cooked until the pork is pull apart tender. The melt in your mouth pork with the spicy red chile is to die for!  And if you have leftovers, make a batch of Carne Adovada Enchiladas.

Here are some more dishes smothered in red chile sauce that I know you’ll enjoy:

Pulled Pork Enchiladas with Red Chile Sauce from Barefeet in The Kitchen

Goat Cheese & Mushroom Chiles Rellenos with Red Chile Sauce from Cats in the Kitchen

Stacked Breakfast Enchiladas with Red Chile Sauce from Foodie Crush

New Mexico Red Chile Enchilada Casserole by Diaz Farms

Red Chile Chicken Pozole’ (Posole’) by Spice Foodie

New Mexico Carne Adovada from She Cooks….he cleans

Chuncho’s Red Chile Stew from Chimayo Chile Brothers

Black Bean – Goat Cheese Enchiladas Smothered in Christmas (both Red and Green) from Eliot’s Eats


If you’d like to buy some dried red chiles or red chile powder, check out these New Mexico Chile Product Suppliers.

Tags: , ,

62 Responses to “Smothered In Red Chile Sauce”

  1. Lesley September 30, 2014 at 2:58 pm #

    Great! NOW I’m hungry! Going through old emails (moved states recently) and found this. It all looks absolutely delicious!

    • mj September 30, 2014 at 8:03 pm #

      Thanks so much Lesley! Hope you had an uneventful move or a move with some really great events. 🙂

  2. Asmita July 9, 2014 at 7:12 am #

    Gorgeous dishes and a gorgeous sauce!! Love!!

  3. Nami | Just One Cookbook July 2, 2014 at 8:26 am #

    I love your collection! You’re my go to person for chile recipes! 🙂 xo

    • mj July 2, 2014 at 11:14 am #

      Thanks Nami! Being the go to chile blogger is one of my goals! 🙂

  4. Amy (Savory Moments) July 1, 2014 at 4:20 am #

    I LOVE, LOVE Mexican food — all of these dishes look wonderful (especially the tamales). The chile pumpkin sauce also sounds terrific!

    • mj July 1, 2014 at 2:46 pm #

      Thanks Amy! My husband was telling me the other day that it’s time for another batch of tamales. 🙂

  5. Katerina July 1, 2014 at 1:28 am #

    I love the idea of smothering in red chili sauce, only I would make it less hot because of stomach issues! I cannot choose which plate I like the most from all the plates listed in your gallery!

    • mj July 1, 2014 at 2:46 pm #

      Thanks Katerina! Sorry about the stomach issue and chile. 🙁 I have issues with highly acidic foods, but thank goodness, not chile. I know people that can’t handle the hot chile, but do quite well with a mild chile. But I am only talking about New Mexico’s chile. Not sure about other chile peppers.

  6. Nandini Voice for the Deprived July 1, 2014 at 12:55 am #

    This is really nice topic, which is very useful for me.

    • mj July 1, 2014 at 2:43 pm #

      Thanks Nandini!

  7. Raymund June 30, 2014 at 1:55 am #

    Totally for me, I love that hot and spicy sauce, I will definitely use that in a lot of dishes Mexican or not

    • mj June 30, 2014 at 8:56 am #

      I figured you’d like the spice red chile! It’s doesn’t go good on cereal, but that’s about it. Ha Ha

  8. Jodee Weiland June 29, 2014 at 4:41 pm #

    You had me at red chile sauce…I love all of your recipes! Thanks for sharing!

    • mj June 30, 2014 at 8:55 am #

      Thanks Jodee!

  9. The Wimpy Vegetarian June 29, 2014 at 11:07 am #

    What a fantastic round-up! We are chile kindred spirits, MJ. I need to make some of my own red chile sauce and then try a bunch of the recipes you have here!!!

    • mj June 29, 2014 at 11:55 am #

      Thanks Susan! Always good to find a chile kindred spirit! There are several vegetarian recipes here that I know you’ll love and for the meat loving husband, just add some ground beef. 🙂

  10. Treat and Trick June 28, 2014 at 10:21 pm #

    We are die hard fan of chili. I don’t think we can live without it. What a tempting roundup of chili!

    • mj June 29, 2014 at 11:50 am #

      Thanks Darlin! Always great to hear from another chile fanatic! 🙂

  11. Liz June 28, 2014 at 7:39 pm #

    What a marvelous round up. I may just have to come to NM to taste the real deal. Our peppers around here are so limited…and you’ve given me a huge craving 🙂

    • mj June 29, 2014 at 11:49 am #

      Come on down Liz! 🙂 There is nothing like the real thing. Thanks!

  12. Carol at Wild Goose Tea June 27, 2014 at 7:14 pm #

    I am with the others on the idea of a cook book. You have one of the more unique blogs about food. It rings authentic with both the recipes and your writing ‘voice’.
    I always look forward to what you are going to set before me. Smiles—–

    • mj June 28, 2014 at 2:22 am #

      Well thank you SO much Carol! I do think one can honestly say that my passion for New Mexico cuisine can be seen here. 🙂 You comments are so appreciated! Thank you!

  13. Terra June 27, 2014 at 3:33 pm #

    I pretty much love everything you make…, love love! I seriously need to make this red chile sauce, what am I waiting for right? Everything smothered in this sauce sounds fantastic to me! Yum, Hugs, Terra

    • mj June 28, 2014 at 2:20 am #

      Thank you for such a nice comment Terra!!! Yes – what are you waiting for?! Everyone needs to have some red chile on hand for some delicious smothering. 🙂

  14. Sissi June 27, 2014 at 8:37 am #

    I would have anything smothered in red chile sauce, especially with one of those you have made, and your recipes look particularly tempting… (I think I have already said it, but the bowl with dark patterns is my favourite and the photograph just breathtaking….).

    • mj June 28, 2014 at 2:19 am #

      Thanks Sissi! Your sweet comments are always appreciated and yes – I know you love that bowl! 🙂

  15. minnie@thelady8home June 27, 2014 at 6:48 am #

    Absolutely fantastic round up MJ, beautiful post. I need to bookmark this. I am so glad I visited you first thing in the morning. A good spicy post spices up my day!

    • mj June 28, 2014 at 2:17 am #

      Thanks Minnie! Oh yes – this is definitely a great way to start the day. The Huevos and the pileup are a perfect spicy start of any day! 🙂

  16. Ramona June 27, 2014 at 5:51 am #

    MJ, I can totally smother myself in this red chili sauce. Mmmm…I love all the dishes that go with it too. I can think of more dishes I’d like to add the sauce to at my house. 🙂

    • mj June 28, 2014 at 2:16 am #

      Thanks Ramona! The number of dishes that could be smothered in red chile is endless. 🙂

  17. Evelyne@cheapethniceatz June 26, 2014 at 2:34 pm #

    So many amazing recipes here. great tips on the toning down of the heat. i sometimes have to, but not too much. Agree with Angie, you need to write a chile cookbook!

    • mj June 26, 2014 at 9:29 pm #

      Thanks Evelyne! Hey – even I have to tone down the red chile some. The last batch I made was quite hot, but works deliciously with a little Greek yogurt.

  18. Kelly @ Inspired Edibles June 26, 2014 at 2:12 pm #

    Like Bill, I just had lunch and I’m hungry all over again looking at your beautiful red chile recipes! That Southwestern Pileup with smothered sauce is looking especially tasty ;-). Thank you for this delicious reminder.

    • mj June 26, 2014 at 9:28 pm #

      Thanks Kelly! The pileup is one of our favorite Sunday brunches!

  19. Nancy@SpicieFoodie June 26, 2014 at 1:32 pm #

    MJ, you have the most fantastic chile sauce recipes — so many which are on my list to try. Fantastic roundup! Thanks so much for including my pozole!:)

    • mj June 26, 2014 at 9:26 pm #

      Thanks Nancy! I love your pozole recipe so it was a no brainer to include it!

  20. Tina @ Just Putzing Around the Kitchen June 26, 2014 at 12:20 pm #

    Yum! All those red sauce-smothered dishes look fabulous!

    • mj June 26, 2014 at 9:25 pm #

      Thanks so much Tina!

  21. ray June 26, 2014 at 9:34 am #

    Love the lineup of what you can do with your delicious red chile sauce. I am with Angie and Maureen — time for a cookbook, MJ! I will be the first in line for the signing. 🙂

    • mj June 26, 2014 at 9:25 pm #

      Thanks so much Ray! Hey, when I do publish a cookbook, you will get a signed copy for free! 🙂

  22. Debra June 26, 2014 at 4:44 am #

    Thanks for the dinner recommendation, Loved La Boca. That reminds me I new to do a New Mexico post soon. Thanks for another great chile round up, MJ.

    • mj June 26, 2014 at 9:23 pm #

      You’re most welcome Debra. Glad you enjoyed it! I look forward to your New Mexico post.

  23. thelady8home June 25, 2014 at 7:32 pm #

    The sauce looks SO tempting. 😀

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 8:00 pm #

      Thanks! It’s quite delicious!

  24. Maureen | Orgasmic Chef June 25, 2014 at 5:11 pm #

    All these dishes make my tongue tingle! I agree with Angie, time for a cookbook from you.

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 7:58 pm #

      Thanks so much Maureen! I’ve realized I’m going to need to be fully retired before writing a cookbook, but it’s still on my To Do list. 🙂

  25. maha June 25, 2014 at 1:41 pm #

    lovely color and healthy ingredients, delicious.

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

      Thanks Maha!

  26. Bill June 25, 2014 at 11:57 am #

    Wow, MJ! What an awesome collection of recipes, particularly the Enchiladas with Onions and Cheese! I just had lunch and my mouth is still watering from looking at your photos! Beautiful post!

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 7:56 pm #

      Thanks so much Bill! Well you grabbed on to our favorite! I’ve made those onion and cheese enchiladas hundreds of times over the years. It’s a recipe we never get tired of.

  27. Gloria June 25, 2014 at 9:36 am #

    wow….just look at the bright red colour…loved all the pics…they look so tempting…

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 7:54 pm #

      Thanks so much Gloria!

  28. John@Kitchen Riffs June 25, 2014 at 9:08 am #

    What a great round up of red spicy goodness! One of these days I really must cook my way through your index. 😉 But first, I need to buy a ristra!

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 7:53 pm #

      Thanks John! There are probably a few ristras left somewhere. Check out some of the NM supplies like the Chile Shop. I think y’all would enjoy some of there recipes.

  29. Judy @Savoring Today June 25, 2014 at 7:55 am #

    We are more green chile lovers, but the bright festive color of red chile sauce is so tempting. Love all the suggestions on how to use it and also how to tone it down when necessary — great post, MJ.

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 7:47 pm #

      Thanks Judy! A lot of people do prefer green over red. Personally, I like them both equally. 🙂

  30. Peachy @ The Peach Kitchen June 25, 2014 at 7:22 am #

    I’m hopping here so late at night and you had my stomach grumbling..

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 7:46 pm #

      Thanks peachy! One does have to be careful eating red chile too late night. 🙂

  31. Angie (@angiesrecipess) June 25, 2014 at 6:50 am #

    The first picture can be the cover of your cookbook :-)) So beautiful and delicious!

    • mj June 25, 2014 at 7:44 pm #

      Wow! Thanks Angie! I’ll have to remember that iI ever get around to doing a cookbook. 🙂


  1. Carne Adovada Enchiladas | MJ's Kitchen - February 26, 2015

    […] a fried egg is placed on top along with a little more red chile.  Normally, our enchiladas are smothered in red chile, but because the carne adovada was already very spicy, I held […]

I love hearing from my visitors, so please leave a comment. Thanks for dropping by!