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This amazingly good Southwestern Red Chile Sauce is the creation of Chef Doug Baehr from Uncommon Kitchen.

This amazingly good Southwestern Red Chile Sauce is the creation of Chef Doug Baehr from Uncommon Kitchen in Lake Tahoe, CA. So easy and so good!

Earlier this summer, during a family and friends vacation to Lake Tahoe, California, we had the huge pleasure of meeting chef Doug Baehr. Doug and his wife Dawn own and operate Uncommon Kitchen – a popular restaurant and deli in Tahoe City serving up fresh and healthy foods made with real and organic ingredients.

Doug is a long-time friend of our friend and neighbor artist Sean Cassidy with whom we vacationed – and during our trip, Doug and Dawn graciously invited the entire group of us to their home for dinner. It was there, that we first ate this amazing Southwestern Red Chile Sauce.

This amazingly good Southwestern Red Chile Sauce is the creation of Chef Doug Baehr from Uncommon Kitchen in Lake Tahoe, CA. So easy and so good!

This sauce is so delicious – months later we are all still talking about it!  Jack keeps saying “That sauce is the best thing I’ve had to eat so far this year!” – which tells you a lot considering how much we cook ourselves!

This Southwestern Red Chile Sauce is rich and complex and addictively delicious! But you’ll be surprised to see in the recipe below that it’s made with commonly-found, simple ingredients. (Jack always says that it’s the sign of a great chef when he or she can take simple ingredients and turn it into something extraordinary – and Doug did just that with this sauce!)

Red Chile Enchiladas Sauce

This Southwestern Red Chile Sauce is also very versatile. We devoured a giant bowl of the sauce served with Doug’s homemade corn tortilla chips and guacamole. For dinner, Doug prepared homemade empanadas – and this Southwestern Red Chile Sauce was the perfect accompaniment for dipping. Dawn added some honey to the sauce – then used it as a dressing over a gorgeous fresh salad. (And we used the sauce in our recipe for Baked Chicken Taquitos.)

Doug and Dawn were so kind to allow us to share this Southwestern Red Chile Sauce recipe with all of you today. (Thank you both!!)

You can also watch Doug prepare some of his other popular recipes from Uncommon Kitchen on YouTube below. Enjoy!

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Southwestern Red Chili Sauce - A Family Feast

Southwestern Red Chile Sauce

  • Author: Chef Doug Baehr of Uncommon Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 50 minutes
  • Yield: 3 cups


13 dried California chiles

1 cup yellow onion diced

2 tablespoons fresh garlic, chopped

2 tablespoons ground cumin

2 tablespoons dry oregano

2 teaspoons kosher salt

2 tablespoons tomato paste

2 tablespoons molasses

2 tablespoons cider vinegar


Remove seeds and stems from chiles and place in a two-quart sauce pan.

Add onions, garlic, cumin, oregano, salt and tomato paste.

Add 2 ½ cups of water and bring to a boil then lower to a fast simmer.

Simmer for 15-25 minutes until the mixture starts to thicken and the liquid level has evaporated to about one cup.

Place entire mixture in blender and puree until smooth.

Add molasses and vinegar and mix.

Strain through a sieve and serve as is with corn chips or as a sauce for any Mexican dish that calls for enchilada sauce.

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

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Southwestern Red Chile Sauce

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