Ranchero Sauce

If you’re looking to add a bold and savory flavor to your meals, look no further than Ranchero Sauce. This Mexican-inspired sauce can be used to enhance any dish. Its unique blend of flavors will have your taste buds tantalized and wanting more!

Ranchero Sauce

What Is Ranchero Sauce?

Ranchero Sauce is a classic Mexican condiment made with tomatoes, onions, chili peppers and a blend of spices. Its bold and savory flavor adds an exciting kick to any dish. It has been around for centuries, but is rapidly gaining popularity across the United States.

You may have tasted it in packets at Taco Bell or other Tex-Mex restaurants. This authentic recipe can also be easily made at home using pantry staples like canned tomatoes and dried herbs, making it a great addition to your weekly meal plan. 

Ranchero Sauce can be used as a marinade for meats or fish, stirred into soups, or served as a topping for tacos and burritos. With its zesty flavor and numerous health benefits, Ranchero Sauce is quickly becoming one of America’s favorite sauces!

What To Serve With Ranchero Sauce?

Ranchero sauce is the perfect accompaniment to just about any dish, but it’s especially delicious when paired with Mexican or Tex-Mex cuisine.

One of the most popular and classic dishes to serve with ranchero sauce is huevos rancheros, which consists of eggs cooked in a spicy tomato-based sauce and served over corn (see also: What Is A Chalupa?)tortillas. 

It’s also great on enchiladas, tacos, burritos, nachos, and quesadillas. If you’re looking for something a bit more creative, try adding some ranchero sauce to grilled burgers or chicken, or even mix it into ground meat mixtures for zesty ranchero burgers.

With its bold flavor and versatility, there are so many ways you can use this classic Mexican condiment!

How To Make Homemade Ranchero Sauce

Making your own homemade ranchero sauce is easy and rewarding! 

  • Heat a large pan to medium-high heat and add the olive oil. 
  • Cook the onions and peppers down for about 5 minutes to soften.
  • Add the garlic and cook for another minute, stirring a bit.
  • Add the tomato, cilantro and chicken broth and stir. 
  • Once combined, season with salt and pepper to taste. 
  • Reduce the heat to low-medium heat and simmer for 10–15 minutes until thickened.

Enjoy your homemade ranchero sauce over eggs, tacos, enchiladas or any other Mexican dish you can dream up!

What Are The Best Ingredients To Use?

Use Canned Tomatoes

Canned tomatoes offer a quick and convenient way to add flavor to your favorite dishes. They can be used in place of fresh tomatoes or as an addition to recipes where you want to up the tomato content. 

Canned tomatoes are already cooked and peeled, making them a great time-saver if you’re in a rush. While they’re not quite as flavorful as fresh tomatoes, they still pack plenty of taste. Plus, they come in a variety of forms—crushed, diced, stewed, puréed—so you can easily find the right type for your recipe. 

Whether you need the convenience of canned tomatoes or just want to add more tomato flavor without using fresh ingredients, it’s easy and convenient to use canned tomatoes for your ranchero sauce. 

Substituting With Fresh Tomatoes

For those looking to add a more intense tomato flavor to their dishes, fresh tomatoes are the way to go. Fresh tomatoes come in many shapes and sizes, from small cherry (see also: What Is Pimento?)and grape tomatoes to large Roma or beefsteak varieties.

They can be used as an alternative for canned tomatoes in just about any recipe, including ranchero sauce. When selecting and preparing fresh tomatoes, it’s important to choose ripe ones with a bright color and smooth skin. 

As they cook, the natural sugars will caramelize, creating a rich flavor that you won’t find in canned versions.

You’ll also need to adjust the cooking time depending on the type of tomato you’re using—firmer varieties like beefsteaks can require longer cooking times than smaller varieties like cherry or grape tomatoes. 

Substituting with fresh tomatoes is a great way to bring out more intense flavor to your ranchero sauce. 

Use A Variety Of Chili Peppers

Ranchero Sauce

Chili peppers are a key ingredient in many Mexican dishes, and it’s essential to use a variety of peppers to get the most out of your recipes, and is a key flavor in ranchero sauce. 

From mild Anaheim peppers to fiery habaneros, each type of chili pepper adds its own unique flavor and heat level. 

Anaheim peppers, also known as California or New Mexico chilies, offer a mild flavor with just enough heat to give dishes an extra kick.

On the other end of the spectrum are habaneros—these extremely hot peppers can add a powerful punch to any dish. Other popular varieties include jalapeños, poblanos, serranos, and chipotles. 

To create delicious ranchero sauce that reflects authentic flavors, it’s important to incorporate several types of chili peppers into your recipes. This will ensure that you get a balance of flavors and heats that won’t overpower one another!

Caramelize The Onions

Caramelizing onions is a great way to add a hint of sweetness to your sauce. The process involves slowly cooking the onions in a pan with a bit of fat, such as olive oil.

As the onions cook, their natural sugars break down and caramelize, giving them a rich golden-brown color and a sweet flavor.

Simply cut the onions into thin slices and add them to the pan. Stirring frequently, cook the onions until they are soft and starting to turn brown.

Reduce the heat if necessary—you want the onions to caramelize evenly without burning. Once they reach your desired color and texture, season with salt and pepper and add them to your sauce. 

Bloom The Spices To Intensify Flavor

Adding spices like cumin, oregano, and cayenne pepper to your ranchero sauce can really bring out the flavor. To really bloom these flavors, you’ll want to add them after you’ve caramelized the onions.

Start by heating up some oil in a pan over medium heat and adding the dry spices. Stir continuously for about 30 seconds, or until you start to smell the aromatic herbs and spices.

This process helps release their essential oils that are trapped in the ingredients and releases them into the fat for a more pungent taste. 

Another great way to intensify flavor is to add chopped chipotles as well. Sautéing them in the same pan will help release their capsaicin, giving your sauce an extra kick of spice!

Once everything has been added together and cooked through, it’s time to enjoy your flavorful ranchero sauce!

Health Benefits Of Ranchero Sauce

As we’ve seen, ranchero sauce typically consists of tomatoes and onions, both of which are great sources of vitamins and minerals. 

Tomatoes contain lycopene, an antioxidant that has been linked with numerous health benefits, including reducing the risk of certain cancers and promoting eye health. 

Onions are rich in vitamin C which helps to boost immunity, as well as sulfur compounds that can help reduce inflammation in the body.

In addition to these essential nutrients, ranchero sauce also contains healthy fats like olive oil, which have been shown to reduce cholesterol levels and protect against heart disease.

It’s also a good source of plant-based proteins, making it a great option for those looking for an alternative to animal products.


Ranchero sauce is a great way to add flavor and spice to Mexican dishes. By incorporating several types of chili peppers, caramelizing the onions, and blooming the spices, you can create a flavorful sauce that is packed with health benefits. 

Whether you’re looking to enjoy a bowl of enchiladas or just want something zesty for tacos, Ranchero sauce is sure to be a hit!

Kaitlyn James
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