Chile de Arbol Salsa + Video


I inherited my mother and grandmas cast-iron stomach, because I never get a stomachache from eating too much salsa or spicy chile.

chile de arbol

I can always count on finding this salsa in my mom’s refrigerator. She and I like very spicy salsas, and we love the intensity of this one. My grandma always had a mild salsa casera (homemade salsa) made with Hatch roasted chile in her kitchen and my mom always has this smoky and spicy chile de arbol salsa in hers. I have to confess that I have eaten an entire bowl of this salsa with a bag of chips in one sitting on more than one occasion. It’s an addicting salsa, if you can handle the heat.

toast chile onion garlic

This salsa is also a favorite of my husband. He also likes spicy chile and the smoky flavor of this salsa pairs especially well with eggs, steak, brisket, and ribs.

Watch this video to see how simple it is to make.

Chile de Arbol Salsa

This salsa is spicy and smoky and pairs well with eggs, steak, brisket, and ribs.
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  • 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • 20 chiles de arbol stemmed (do not remove seeds or veins)
  • 1 small white onion  quartered
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup canned peeled whole tomatoes
  • 1 8-ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon salt


  • Heat canola oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add chiles and toast for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring constantly so chiles are fried well and change color.
  • Add onion and garlic and fry for 2 minutes, again stirring constantly.
  • Transfer fried ingredients to a food processor or blender and add whole tomatoes, tomato sauce, and salt. Puree until salsa is smooth with specks of chiles. Add salt to taste.
  • Serve at room temperature or slightly chilled.
  • Serve as a salsa dip or to top off your favorite tacos or tostadas. Chile de arbol salsa can be stored in the refrigerator 3 to 5 days, or frozen for many weeks.
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