From Mexico to Argentina, Latinos use a variety of sauces to add spice and sazón to our favorite dishes. But these sauces just wouldn’t be the same without the chile peppers and spices that give them their distinct flavor.
Here are seven great sauces for you to pair with your next meal, I dare you! Who’s up for the challenge?
Colombian Aji Picante via SkinnyTaste
Servings: 20 • Size: 1 tbsp
Calories: 3.2 • Fat: 0 g • Protein: 0.2 g • Carb: 0.8 g • Fiber: 0.2 g
4 large scallions
1-2 small habanero pepper (scotch bonnet pepper would work)
1/2 bunch cilantro
juice of 1 lime
1 tsp vinegar
1 oz water
salt and fresh pepper
Place all ingredients in a small food processor and pulse a few times.
Salsa a la Huancaína altered from South American Food
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
4 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
3-4 yellow aji amarillo chile peppers (frozen is fine), or 1/2 cup jarred aji amarillo paste
2 cloves garlic, mashed
2 cups white farmer’s cheese (queso freso)
4 (low sodium) saltine crackers
3/4 cup almond milk
Salt and pepper to taste
Arbol Chile Salsa
Salsa de Chile de Arbol via Rick Bayless
akes about 1 3/4 cups
Recipe from Season 6 of Mexico – One Plate at a Time
1/2 ounce (about 16) chile de arbol
6 large garlic cloves, unpeeled
1 pound (10 to 12 medium) tomatillos, husked and rinsed
Sugar, about 1/2 teaspoon (optional)
1. Toast and roast. In an ungreased skillet set over medium heat, toast the chiles, stirring them around for a minute or so until they are very aromatic (some will have slightly darkened spots on them). Cover with hot tap water and let rehydrate for 30 minutes.
In the same skillet, roast the garlic, turning regularly, until soft and blotchy-dark in places, about 15 minutes. Cool and slip off the papery skin.
Roast the tomatillos on a baking sheet 4 inches below a very hot broiler until darkly roasted, even blackened in spots, about 5 minutes. Flip them over and roast the other side – 4 or 5 minutes more will give you splotchy-black and blistered tomatillos. Cool, then transfer the contents of the baking sheet (including any juices) to a blender or food processor.
2. Finish the salsa. Drain the chiles and add them to the tomatillos along with the garlic. Puree, then scrape into a serving dish. Stir in enough water to give the salsa a spoonable consistency, usually about 1/4 cup. Season with salt, usually a scant teaspoon, and the sugar. Refrigerated, the salsa keeps for several days.
Spicy Chilean Pebre Recipe via Cheap Recipe Blog
For a knock-your-socks-off, extra-spicy sauce, use two jalapeños with seeds. If you’re not fond of spicy foods, use half of a jalapeño or less, or substitute green pepper.
1 cup tightly packed cilantro leaves
1 to 2 jalapeños (see note above)
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
Juice from one lime
1 tablespoon white vinegar
Pinch of sea salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
Place all ingredients except for olive oil in a blender or food processor. Pulse until smooth. Stream in olive oil.
Serve chilled (see serving suggestions above).
Molho Apimentado (Malagueta Hot Sauce) via Fiery Foods
Makes 1 cup
1 red onion, minced
2 medium ripe tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 green bell pepper, seeded, white membrane removed, minced
¼ cup sherry vinegar
¼ cup olive (or coconut) oil
2 (or more to taste) malagueta peppers or green bird chies, stems and seeds removed, minced
Place all ingredients in a good food processor or blender and puree. Add water if necessary to adjust the consistency.
George Duran’s Guasacaca Recipe via Venezuelan food and drinks
1 medium onion, roughly chopped
2 green sweet peppers, seeded, deveined, and roughly chopped
2 ripe avocados, peeled and seeded
2 cloves garlic
Half a bunch of fresh parsley leaves
Half a bunch fresh cilantro leaves
A third cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon salt, or to taste
Pinch of black pepper
1 cup olive (or coconut) oil
Put everything except the olive oil into a food processor and process until mostly smooth. Add the olive oil in a stream with the processor running and process until smooth. Let stand at room temperature for at least 1 hour for the flavors to blend. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve sauce at room temperature with meats, fish, or vegetable chips. If made in advance, store, covered, in the refrigerator, but bring to room temperature before serving.
1 packed cup fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves
¾ packed cup fresh cilantro leaves
¼ packed cup fresh oregano leaves
¼ cup red wine vinegar
6 cloves garlic
½ jalapeño, stemmed
Salt and freshly ground white pepper
½ cup plus 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive (or coconut) oil
In a food processor, combine the parsley, cilantro, oregano, vinegar, garlic, jalapeño, 2 tsp. salt, and ½ tsp. pepper. While pulsing the food processor, drizzle in ½ cup of the oil until the mixture becomes a creamy yet slightly coarse sauce.
Let me know how many of these you try and which you like the best in the comments below