Marinades and Sauces

Mole verde

Fresh And Fiery Mole Verde

A fresh take on mole…

When you think of mole, most think of the popular red mole sauce (mole poblano). Though mole verde (a.k.a. green mole sauce) is just as tasty, but in quite different ways. Think fresh, spicy, and slightly tart with mole verde instead of the earthy and slightly sweet taste of red mole sauce.

Tomatillo and serrano peppers provide the flavor pop here. No, this mole doesn’t use any of the holy trinity of dried chilies typical of red mole (ancho, guajillo, or pasilla) opting instead for the bright garden fresh bite of fresh serrano. This is a delicious sauce over pork dishes and enchiladas. It’s also quite good as a topper for fish tacos.

If you’re looking for an easy take on red mole, take a look at our recipe here. It’s easy to make with any well-stocked spice rack.

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Chipotle Alfredo Sauce

Chipotle Alfredo Sauce

Creamy with a touch of fire and smoke…

A simple pasta with alfredo sauce is made into something more dramatic with the inclusion of smoky chipotle peppers. Canned chipotle in adobo sauce brings a touch of smoke and fire to the table. It’s a delicious combo with the simple creaminess of alfredo sauce. Pair it with chicken or shrimp for a more hearty meal. Or thicken up the sauce a bit with some extra simmering time for something more dip-worthy.

If smokiness is not your thing, but you’re still looking for a fiery kick to your alfredo sauce, take a look at this delicious alternative. Our spicy alfredo sauce recipe uses cayenne – a more neutral flavor though with a certain uptick in kick – so the overall creamy alfredo flavor remains pure.

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Spicy Turkey Gravy

Spicy Turkey Gravy

Chipotle brings a smoky warmth…

Sure, any type of turkey gravy is pretty delicious, whether over turkey, mashed potatoes, or any of the typical sides that often accompany them. But if you’re looking for something a bit more memorable, that chipotle powder in your spice rack can be just what you need. This spicy turkey gravy has a touch of smoky warmth from the chipotle peppers that works quite well with classic turkey meals.

Feel free to adjust the amount of chipotle powder as you see fit. You could also try this recipe with chipotle in adobo sauce instead. Start with a half chipotle pepper mashed into a paste. You can also use some of that deliciously earthy adobo sauce in the mix for a spicy gravy that’s a bit more exotic.

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Pumpkin mole sauce

Pumpkin Mole Sauce

An earthy fall-focused mole…

Pumpkin season means pumpkins are…well in everything. Soups, drinks, desserts, and yes…sauces. They are particularly good with Mexican sauces like mole. And it makes sense – mole sauce is already deliciously earthy and sweet, making pumpkin – a vegetable native to Mexico – a perfect addition to the mix. Try it with chicken, steak, and really and Mexican dish as a seasonal alternative to the normal mole.

We spice up this mole beyond the mild ancho pepper with a bit of crushed red pepper. If you prefer keeping it mild just remove the red pepper flakes. It’ll have a very mild hint of heat.

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Spicy Creole sauce

Spicy Creole Sauce

Butter and spice…

This butter-based spicy Creole sauce is plenty rich with a whole lot of Southern charm. It uses a wide variety of spices off the spice rack – most of which are part of a typical Creole spice mix. So if you have a premade Creole seasoning at the ready, you could swap out the dried seasonings below for a comparable amount of seasoning (approximately three tablespoons). Note – Creole seasonings differ slightly in ingredients, so there may be a slightly different end flavor if you choose this option. Our homemade Creole seasoning recipe, for instance, includes basil and thyme in the mix.

Cayenne pepper is the spicy star here (and would also be present in a pre-made seasoning mix), but the sauce also gets a little heat from a few dashes of Tabasco sauce. Adjust both to your liking (up or down). Try this sauce with fish, particularly shrimp and catfish. Or add some delicious spice to your breakfast. This sauce is oh so tasty drizzled over scrambled eggs.

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spicy red enchilada sauce

Spicy Red Enchilada Sauce

Smoky and bold…

You can’t go wrong with a delicious smoky and spicy red enchilada sauce. Whether you want to layer it atop of your enchiladas prior to baking or simply use it as a dipper side to the plate, it provides a ton of flavor to any enchilada type. This recipe makes enough sauce for four enchiladas (1/2 cup each of sauce) if you’re going the baking route. Adjust up if you’re baking more.

Chipotle peppers provide both heat and smokiness here, with additional spiciness coming from cayenne pepper. Of course, adjust as you need based on your spicy food tolerance. The cayenne pepper can be removed completely without a change to overall flavor (beyond the spiciness).

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jalapeno arugula aioli

Jalapeño Arugula Aioli

A fresh tasting dip or spread…

When you first think arugula and jalapeño, you may not think there’s much in common. But there’s a lot more “there” there than you may think. Arugula, with its fresh peppery taste, pairs so well with the bright, grassy flavor of jalapeño peppers. It makes for one delicious aioli that’s perfect either as a dip or a spread. It’s particularly good on veggie sandwiches or go hearty and try it as a side to steak. It’s a fresh (and lightly fiery) sauce that’s pretty versatile even with its unique flavor.

Jalapeño peppers are typically hot enough for most. But, if you’re like us, you may want to increase the heat up a notch. We recommend adjusting the chili pepper used instead of increasing the amount of jalapeños used. Serrano peppers have a similar (though not exact) bright flavor, but they are a notch up on the pepper scale – often twice as hot (or even more) than a jalapeño.

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