Meet mole, the Mexican sauce that’s a tasty blend of spices, from cumin’s earthiness to chipotle’s kick. What really sets it apart is the touch of cocoa powder added for a little sweet richness. It’s the best blend of flavors, you’re going to love it!
Looking for more homemade sauces to level up your favorite Mexican dishes? Try this red enchilada sauce, green enchilada sauce, or homemade salsa verde!
Mexican Mole Sauce
If you’ve never tried mole before, think of it as a fusion of sweet, smoky, and spicy. It’s a velvety sauce made from ingredients you might not expect, like cocoa powder, chipotle peppers, and dates. I know the chocolate part may sound unusual, but trust me, it’s that hint of richness that make mole sauce so good!
Now, what can you do with this magical mole sauce? It’s a wonderful flavor enhancer, and works in so many different ways. It’s awesome with grilled chicken, beef, pork, you name it. You can also pour it over enchiladas or add a dollop to burritos or tacos for some extra flavor. You will be hooked after one taste! Be prepared to make this authentic mole sauce for every taco night.
What is Mexican Mole Made Of?
Time to break out your spice rack, because mole sauce uses a lot of them. It’s what makes the flavor so delicious and complex! Exact measurements are in the recipe card below.
- Olive Oil: Adds a smooth texture and a hint of richness to the sauce.
- Sweet Onion: Brings a gentle, sweet flavor that blends well with the other ingredients. It gets sautéed to caramelized perfection before the other ingredients are added.
- Garlic: Adds a subtle, savory kick to enhance the overall taste of the mole.
- Cornstarch: Helps thicken the sauce, making it luscious and velvety.
- Chili Powder: Provides a warm, mild heat. You can also use paprika if you want something even more mild.
- Cumin: Adds a touch of earthiness and warmth to the flavor profile.
- Cinnamon: For some gentle heat. It goes perfectly with the cocoa powder.
- Coriander: Contributes a hint of citrusy and spicy notes.
- Salt and Pepper: Balance the flavors and enhance the overall taste.
- Chicken Broth: Forms the base and also adds savory flavor to the sauce.
- Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce: Brings smokiness and a medium level of spice.
- Almond Butter or Peanut Butter: Creates a creamy, nutty richness that melds with other flavors.
- Dates: Add a natural sweetness and a unique flavor.
- Cocoa Powder: A classic ingredient! It adds rich, smoky flavor.
How to Make Mexican Mole
Making homemade mole sauce is really simple! Once you sauté your vegetables, all you have to do is blend everything together and then warm it over the stove.
- Heat Oil: Heat the olive oil in a medium-sized saucepan or skillet over medium heat.
- Sauté: Add the diced onion and then sauté until the onions are translucent.
- Add Garlic: Add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
- Combine Spices and Seasonings: In a small bowl combine the chili powder, cumin, cinnamon, coriander, salt, and black pepper.
- Season the Vegetables: Add the seasonings and cornstarch to the cooked onions. Then stir to combine.
- Add Broth: Pour in ½ cup of broth and whisk to combined then remove from the heat.
- Transfer to Blender: Add the skillet mixture to a food processor or a high-speed blender. Add the chipotle peppers, almond butter, dates, cocoa powder, and remaining broth.
- Blend: Blend until smooth making sure the dates and peppers blended thoroughly.
- Simmer: Pour the sauce back into the saucepan and simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes. Add more chicken broth if needed to reach desired consistency.
- Enjoy: Use immediately or store covered in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days. More broth may be needed to heat the sauce because it thickens as it cools.
Homemade mole sauce is all about personal preference. So, feel free to customize and experiment until you find the perfect texture and blend of flavors!
- Sauté Slowly: When cooking the onions and garlic, take your time until they’re soft and aromatic. This sets the foundation for rich flavors.
- Spice it Up: Feel free to adjust the spice level by using more or fewer chipotle peppers. Start with a small amount and add more if you want it spicier. You can also add more chili powder to taste.
- Adjust the Consistency: If the sauce gets too thick during simmering, add a bit more chicken broth to reach your desired consistency.
- More Mix-Ins: For more texture, try adding things like raisins, almonds, peanuts, or pumpkin seeds.
Store leftover mole sauce in an airtight container or jar. It will stay good for 4-5 days in the refrigerator. The sauce will thicken as it sits, so reserve some chicken broth to mix in later.
To Reheat: Warm over the stove on medium heat, adding chicken broth if needed to thin out the mole sauce.
Heat the olive oil in a medium-sized saucepan or skillet over medium heat.
Add the diced onion and sauté until the onions are translucent.
Add the minced garlic and cook for 30 seconds.
In a small bowl combine the chili powder, cumin, cinnamon, coriander, salt, and black pepper.
Add the seasonings and cornstarch to the cooked onions. Stir to combine.
Pour in ½ cup of broth and whisk to combined then remove from the heat.
Add the skillet mixture to a food processor or a high-speed blender. Add the chipotle peppers, almond butter, dates, cocoa powder, and remaining broth.
Blend until smooth making sure the dates and peppers blended thoroughly.
Pour the sauce back into the saucepan and simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes. Add more chicken broth if needed to reach desired consistency.
Use immediately or store covered in the refrigerator for up to 4-5 days. More broth may be needed to heat the sauce becuase it thickens as it cools.
Serving1gCalories51kcal (3%)Carbohydrates8g (3%)Protein1g (2%)Fat2g (3%)Saturated Fat0.4g (2%)Polyunsaturated Fat0.4gMonounsaturated Fat1gCholesterol2mg (1%)Sodium625mg (26%)Potassium119mg (3%)Fiber2g (8%)Sugar4g (4%)Vitamin A601IU (12%)Vitamin C1mg (1%)Calcium22mg (2%)Iron1mg (6%)
All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.