Are you craving a delicious Mexican dish but find yourself without green enchilada sauce?
Don’t worry, there are plenty of substitutes available that can still give your meal that authentic and flavorful taste.
From salsa to taco sauce, there are a variety of options to choose from.
In this article, we’ll explore some of the best substitutes for green enchilada sauce and how to use them in your favorite dishes.
So, let’s dive in and discover some new and exciting flavors!
What Can I Substitute For Green Enchilada Sauce?
One of the best substitutes for green enchilada sauce is taco sauce. This versatile sauce can be found at any grocery store and comes in varying degrees of spiciness. The main ingredients in taco sauce are tomato sauce or tomato paste, paprika, and cayenne pepper. Some taco sauces also include onion, oregano, or garlic. While enchilada sauce is usually used for main dishes, taco sauce is more often used as a condiment to top food or side dishes. Taco sauce can be used as a dipping sauce for nachos and as a topping for burritos and quesadillas.
Another great substitute for green enchilada sauce is salsa. Especially oven-roasted tomato salsa or restaurant-style salsa are both great to use as substitutes. Salsa is mostly used as a condiment and added to a taco or served with nachos or tortilla chips. If you want to use salsa as a substitute, you need to increase the amount so it is enough to cover the enchiladas. So, you either make more salsa or when you use bottled salsa you may need to add liquid to increase the amount. As the texture is different compared to enchilada sauce, be prepared that the enchiladas will taste different than when made with regular enchilada sauce.
If you’re feeling adventurous, you could try making your own green enchilada sauce substitute with tomatillos, jalapeños, cilantro, and garlic. Or, you could try using a salsa verde in its place. Salsa verde is similar to green enchilada sauce in that it’s made primarily of onions, tomatoes, and chilies and has a thicker and fuller texture. The spices and chilies you use later in the recipe heat up the salsa verde.
Salsa As A Substitute For Green Enchilada Sauce
Salsa is another great option to substitute for green enchilada sauce. There are different types of salsa available in the market, but restaurant-style salsa or oven-roasted tomato salsa are both great options to use as substitutes. These salsas are usually more chunky in texture compared to regular enchilada sauce. Salsa is mostly used as a condiment and added to a taco or served with nachos or tortilla chips. If you want to use salsa as a substitute, you need to increase the amount so it is enough to cover the enchiladas. You can either make more salsa or when you use bottled salsa, you may need to add liquid to increase the amount.
It is important to taste the salsa and adjust the spices like enchilada seasoning to see if you like the taste of the salsa. As the texture is different compared to enchilada sauce, be prepared that the enchiladas will taste different than when made with regular enchilada sauce. However, using salsa as a substitute can add a unique flavor and texture to your dish.
It’s important to note that green enchilada sauce and salsa verde are both sauces made from green tomatoes, but there are some key differences between the two. Salsa verde is usually made with raw tomatoes, while green enchilada sauce is made with cooked tomatoes. Salsa verde also typically contains more herbs and spices than green enchilada sauce. As a result, salsa verde has a brighter, fresher flavor, while green enchilada sauce is more savory.
Using Taco Sauce As A Replacement For Green Enchilada Sauce
If you prefer taco sauce over green enchilada sauce, or if you already have taco sauce in your fridge that you want to use instead, it is easy to make the substitution. However, keep in mind that enchiladas require more sauce than tacos, so you will need to increase the amount of taco sauce to ensure adequate coverage.
To do this, you can add additional liquid to your taco sauce, such as chicken or vegetable broth. If this dilutes the flavor too much, you can add a dash of extra chili powder, cumin, garlic powder, or even some chopped chilies for more heat. If you prefer a slightly sweeter taste, adding a drizzle of honey or maple syrup can also be a good option.
It’s important to note that taco sauce has a thicker consistency and contains more tomato than green enchilada sauce. Therefore, if you are using taco sauce as a replacement for green enchilada sauce, you will need to make it more watery. One way to do this is by adding some chicken broth to the taco sauce.
If you want to create a more authentic green enchilada sauce flavor with your taco sauce substitute, you can add green salsa or roasted tomatillos to your red taco sauce. This will give it a similar texture and flavor profile to green enchilada sauce.
Homemade Tomatillo Sauce As A Flavorful Alternative
If you’re looking for a unique and flavorful alternative to green enchilada sauce, consider making your own homemade tomatillo sauce. Tomatillos are a small, green fruit that are commonly used in Mexican cuisine. When combined with other ingredients like jalapeños and cilantro, they create a tangy and slightly spicy sauce that can be used in place of green enchilada sauce.
To make your own tomatillo sauce, start by removing the papery husks from about a pound of tomatillos and rinsing them under cold water. Cut them in half and place them on a baking sheet with a few cloves of garlic and a sliced jalapeño. Roast them in the oven at 400°F for about 15-20 minutes, or until they’re soft and slightly charred.
Once the tomatillos are roasted, transfer them to a blender or food processor along with the garlic, jalapeño, and a handful of fresh cilantro. Add a pinch of salt and blend until smooth. If the sauce is too thick, you can thin it out with a little bit of chicken broth or water.
This homemade tomatillo sauce is perfect for use in enchiladas, tacos, or as a dip for tortilla chips. It has a bright and tangy flavor that pairs well with spicy meats like chicken or pork. Plus, it’s easy to make and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Creamy Avocado Sauce For A Unique Twist On Green Enchilada Sauce
For a unique twist on green enchilada sauce, try making a creamy avocado sauce. This sauce is silky smooth in texture, tangy in flavor, and has a bit of spice. It’s also quick and easy to prepare. The main ingredients are avocados, tomatillos, green chilies, garlic, and cilantro. You can adjust the spice level by adding more or less green chilies or jalapeños.
To make the sauce, blend all the ingredients in a food processor or blender until smooth. If the sauce is too thick, you can thin it out with a bit of chicken or vegetable broth. This creamy avocado sauce is perfect for topping enchiladas, tacos, or any Mexican dish that calls for green enchilada sauce. It adds a unique flavor and creaminess that will make your dish stand out.
In addition to using this sauce as a substitute for green enchilada sauce, you can also use it as a dip for tortilla chips or as a topping for grilled chicken or fish. It’s a versatile sauce that can be used in many different ways. Plus, it’s healthy and packed with nutrients from the avocados and tomatillos.
Other Creative Substitutes For Green Enchilada Sauce
Aside from taco sauce and salsa, there are other creative substitutes for green enchilada sauce that you can try. One of these is mole sauce. Mole is a traditional Mexican sauce made with a variety of ingredients such as chilies, nuts, seeds, and chocolate. While it may seem like an unconventional substitute for green enchilada sauce, mole can add a unique and complex flavor to your dish.
Another interesting substitute is sofrito sauce. Sofrito is a Spanish sauce made with onions, garlic, tomatoes, and peppers. It’s commonly used in Latin American and Caribbean cuisine as a base for stews, rice dishes, and sauces. Sofrito can add a rich and savory flavor to your enchiladas that’s different from the traditional green enchilada sauce.
If you’re looking for a spicier substitute, you can try using harissa paste. Harissa is a North African chili paste made with roasted red peppers, garlic, and spices such as cumin and coriander. It has a bold and smoky flavor that can add an extra kick to your enchiladas.
Lastly, if you’re looking for a creamy substitute, you can try using sour cream or Greek yogurt mixed with some lime juice and spices such as cumin and chili powder. This creates a tangy and slightly spicy sauce that can be used as a topping or filling for your enchiladas.