Chipotle sauce

Quick Look_______________

At many Mexican restaurants there is a special chipotle sauce (smoked jalapenos). In downtown San Jose there's a burrito shop by my school that is known for their "orange sauce." It's not that hard to make and is a good condiment for carnitas. You can make it as spicy as you like by adjusting the chipotle to sauce ratio. I personally like to make 2 batches with the spicy one triple strength. That way there's something for everyone. This picture comes from a recent home worship service with one of our Berkeley college groups, acts 2 fellowship, at Gracepoint Fellowship.
  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: none
  • Difficulty: Easy.
  • Labor Intensity: Easy enough to do on your own
  • 30 servings, adjust by 1.5x if your group tends to eat multiple servings.


  • 2-3 cans chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (7oz for about $2 @ Mexican grocery store, Lucky, or Smart and Final - not at safeway)
  • Sour cream [$2-3 safeway]
  • Mayo (about $2)
  • Lemon juice (about 1 lemon optional)
  • salt/pepper
  • Garlic (optional)
  • Basil, oregano...etc (optional)
  • Total: under $10.00


  • Pour 1 can chipotle peppers (7 oz), 1 cup mayo, 1 cup sour cream, 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice, teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, few peeled cloves of garlic, teaspoon herbs into blender.
  • Blend for 30 seconds or fully mixed.
  • If too spicy, add more ingredients, not spicy enough add more chipotle....etc
  • Adjust to taste

Tom's Tips and Tricks_______________

This is just a basic framework for the sauce. Adjust as you like. For extra spicy, I use 3 cans of chiptole peppers instead of one (it is quite spicy for some people). My recomendation is to make 1/2 or less of the recipe. Taste it and adjust as you like. If you keep adding more sour cream to dilute it, you can end up with way too much sauce. Figure out the ratio you like and then make as much as you need.

If you are making it in bulk, you can just blend the peppers and then stir it into the mayo/sour cream.

This kind of spice is one that numbs and burns your throat after you swallow. You can add diversity to the spice by adding hot sauce (tabasco...etc) to it for the tongue burning spice.

[Possible side dish] Serve with burritos and tortilla chips


Steven C said…
We had this sauce to accompany our rotisserie chicken sandwiches at our Saturday workday. It tasted really good!
becky said…
- another simpler version is to just blend a can of chipotle peppers in a food processor, and hand mix with mayo. less refined, but still gets "wows" on sandwiches.
Grace said…
if you need a really quick chipotle sauce, Jetro sells a plastic container of it in the dairy section!

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