Ranchero Sauce

This chunky, quick-cooked salsa has a lot more flavor than the store-bought stuff. Serve it with chips for dipping. Also use it on Chevys Three-Cheese Chile RelleƱos, huevos rancheros, and omelets. You can even heat it up and toss it with pasta, just like a traditional Italian tomato sauce (for extra credit, crumble some queso fresco on top).–Peter Serantoni

LC Salsa As Sauce Note

Yes, we realize you’re accustomed to raw salsas. We Americans tend to equate “salsa” with raw chopped tomatoes, onion, chile pepper, lime, and cilantro, although the term actually is Spanish for “sauce,” which covers all manner of salsas, both uncooked as well as cooked. Which is our way of saying that “salsa” can be many, many different things. Like this quick-cooked ranchero sauce that’s oh so mild and lovely on just about most things.

Ranchero Sauce Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 15 M
  • 30 M
  • Makes 3 cups


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 3/4 cup chopped onion
  • 3 cups peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes
  • 2 teaspoons store-bought or homemade tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon minced oregano leaves


  • 1. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and saute until softened. Add the rest of the ingredients, increase the heat to medium-high, and bring to a boil. Once the sauce is boiling, decrease the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool to room temperature.
  • 2. Use immediately or transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3 days. Gently heat the ranchero sauce over low heat before using.
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