Simple Homemade Taco Sauce Recipe

What good is a taco without some killer sauce to go on top? Sure, it's fine to go to the store, and grab a jar of pre-made taco sauce, but it's also easy to make your own at home in a matter of minutes. All you need is a little tomato sauce, and a blend of spices, and voila — it's homemade taco sauce at its finest. This goes great on top of any type of taco whether it's made with chicken, steak, or even fish. Trust us — it's a great way to add flavor to your favorite Taco Tuesday entrée. 

Recipe developer Catherine Brookes of Blue Sky Eating has a knack for making some of the best sauces to accompany a variety of cuisines, and this one is no exception. "I love the simplicity and versatility of this recipe! It's so easy to add spicy Mexican flavors to a tomato base, and create a delicious sauce," Brookes raves. "Making the sauce from scratch makes for a fresher, tastier sauce, and you can customize the spice level to your preference too."

Keep reading to find out how to make this simple homemade taco sauce. 

Gather the ingredients for this homemade taco sauce

Most of the taco sauce's ingredients are spices, so be sure to check your spice cabinet before you head to the store. You will need tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, oregano, cayenne pepper, and sugar. "The taste is a rich tomato flavor with plenty of spice balanced with a little sweetness too," Brookes describes. The recipe also calls for water and salt. "To add more of a kick to the sauce, simply add more chili powder, or you could also add a little hot sauce," Brookes explains. 

Once you have those items, you can make this simple homemade taco sauce. 

Simmer the taco sauce

To make this homemade taco sauce, add tomato sauce, cumin, chili powder, garlic powder, oregano, cayenne pepper, sugar, water, and salt to a large saucepan on the stove. Turn the heat to medium-high. As you wait for the mixture to boil, be sure to stir frequently to mix all the ingredients. When you see bubbles hit the surface of the liquid, reduce the heat to a simmer. Leave the taco sauce to simmer for about 10 minutes, and then remove it from the heat. "Simmering helps to let all the flavors mingle, and thickens the sauce slightly," Brookes explains. 

Serve and enjoy

Now, the taco sauce is good to go. Of course, you can drizzle the sauce over your tacos, but there are plenty of other ways to use it. "This would also be great with pasta, or for other Mexican dishes such as enchiladas," she notes. "Leftovers should keep well for 1 week in an airtight container in the fridge," Brookes notes. We hope you use this recipe on repeat for Taco Tuesdays. 

Simple Homemade Taco Sauce Recipe
4.9 from 43 ratings
This taco sauce recipe is not only easy to make and customizable, but also can be used in a wide range of dishes.
Prep Time
Cook Time
homemade taco sauce in jar
Total time: 15 minutes
  • 2 cups tomato sauce
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • Salt to taste
  1. Add all ingredients to a large saucepan.
  2. Bring to the boil over medium-high heat, stirring frequently.
  3. Reduce to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes.
  4. Serve with tacos or enchiladas, and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
Calories per Serving 42
Total Fat 0.7 g
Saturated Fat 0.1 g
Trans Fat 0.0 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 9.0 g
Dietary Fiber 2.3 g
Total Sugars 5.5 g
Sodium 603.1 mg
Protein 1.9 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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