Ranchero Sauce

Maggie May Schill


I love making my ranchero sauce. It stores well and goes so well with so many different south-west and Mexican foods. I prefer to make my ranchero sauce with heirloom or Mexican Organic tomatoes. I am a huge advocate of not using those genetically modified freaks people call tomatoes traditionally. They are orange, watery with zero flavor. In Florida is it really hard to find good tomatoes. The heat makes it hard to grow them, and commercially they barely put any effort in for quality. And tomatoes frankly are the key to good ranchero sauce.

★★★★★ 1 vote
20 Min
1 Hr
Stove Top


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3 medium
heirloom tomatoes, chopped
1 small
yellow tomato, chopped
2 c
red onion, diced
1 medium
red bell pepper, diced, seeded and ribs removed.
2 c
fresh cilantro, chopped
4-5 clove
garlic, minced
1/2 c
veggie or chicken broth
1 1/2 Tbsp
1 1/2 tsp
chili powder
4 tsp
ground cumin
1 medium
jalapeno pepper, diced, seeded and ribs removed
2 Tbsp
olive oil
1 Tbsp
lime juice
1 1/2 tsp
smoked paprika
salt, pepper and cayenne pepper to taste!

How to Make Ranchero Sauce


  • 1In a medium sauce pan over medium heat, add oil and smoke.
  • 2Sweat garlic and onion in oil until tender.
  • 3Add jalapeno and cook for 10 minutes covered.
  • 4Add tomatoes with salt. (salt will draw the liquid from tomatoes.) Cook covered for 30 minutes on medium low heat.
  • 5Drain excess tomato liquid from pan.
  • 6Add cilantro and broth to pan. Simmer for 5 minutes covered.
    (Adjust the thickness of the sauce with broth. Be sure to drain all the excess liquid you can, the tomato liquid is super watery, but the 1/2 cup of broth will add the extra flavor you are looking for. You might need more than 1/2 cup or a little less depending on how much liquid your tomatoes give up while cooking.)
  • 7Add paprika, salt, pepper, cayenne, chilli, lime juice and cumin.
  • 8Blend mixture with immersion blender, or transfer to a standard blender until smooth. (If you like chunky sauce don't blend it, tastes the same whether smooth or not.)
  • 9Simmer the sauce for about 15 minutes before serving. A little tip: if you find the sauce too watery after you add your stock, no big deal, simmer it uncovered, it'll thicken itself up in no time.
  • 10In this entry I served ranchero sauce over my black bean quesadilla.

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