Traditional Molé

Raven Higheagle


The story behind this sauce tells of two nuns surprised by a visitor. They had little in the way of food and so they used a molcajete to grind every ingredient they could find and simmered it in liquid until it thickened into a sauce.

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Makes about 6 cups
10 Min
1 Hr
Stove Top


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guajillo chiles, roasted, skinned, stemmed and seeded
3 large
tomatoes, roasted and peeled
1/4 c
1 large
white onion, peeled and sliced
8 clove
1 stick
cinnamon torn into small pieces
1 Tbsp
mexican oregano
1/4 c
unsalted peanuts or unsweetened peanut butter
whole clove
1/4 c
masa harina
1 tsp
cocoa powder
1/4 tsp
1/4 tsp
anise seeds
1/4 c
raisins, soaked in water to soften (optional)
4 c
chicken stock
sesame seed to sprinkle on top when serving

How to Make Traditional Molé


  • 1Note: The traditional way is to mash all of the ingredients except the broth, with a molcajete (mortar and pestle) but a blender will also do the job just fine.
  • 2Heat the lard in a large saucepan. Add in the onions and garlic and cook until translucent.
  • 3In a blender, puree the peanuts then add in the oregano, cinnamon, anise, peppercorns, thyme and cloves and blend with the tomatoes. Puree to make a smooth paste.
  • 4Add in the onions and garlic and puree again. Finally, add chiles to blender to puree into a smooth paste.
  • 5Add the chicken broth to the pot and add the pureed ingredients.
  • 6Make a roux, by mixing the masa with a 1/4 cup of the chicken broth.
  • 7Mix the roux into the broth and whisk until mixture is smooth. Add the pureed ingredients and simmer for 1 hour, covered and then simmer uncovered until sauce has thickened.
  • 8Sprinkle sesame seeds on top when serving.

Printable Recipe Card

About Traditional Molé

Course/Dish: Other Sauces
Main Ingredient: Vegetable
Regional Style: Mexican

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