Adobo Sauce With Garlic and Orange Juice

Adobo sauce recipe

​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga

Prep: 10 mins
Cook: 40 mins
Rest Time: 12 hrs
Total: 12 hrs 50 mins
Servings: 8 servings
Yield: 2 cups
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
105 Calories
8g Fat
9g Carbs
2g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Servings: 8
Amount per serving
Calories 105
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 8g 10%
Saturated Fat 1g 3%
Cholesterol 1mg 0%
Sodium 204mg 9%
Total Carbohydrate 9g 3%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 4g
Protein 2g
Vitamin C 22mg 112%
Calcium 48mg 4%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 242mg 5%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

Canned chipotle chilis often come packed in adobo, but you can use this earthy, rich sauce in many ways. This homemade adobo sauce makes a flavorful marinade or simmer sauce for chicken, pork, beef, or fish. You can add interest to soups and stews with a couple of tablespoons of adobo sauce. You can drizzle it over vegetables, potatoes, or rice for a side dish with character, or mix it with ranch dressing or mayonnaise for a salad topper or sandwich condiment. Adobo sauce in an airtight container will keep in the fridge for up to a month.


  • 12 cups water

  • 1/2 cup white vinegar, divided

  • 8 dried guajillo chiles

  • 8 dried ancho chiles

  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon oil

  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste

  • 2 cups chicken broth, or beef or vegetable broth, divided

  • 6 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 medium onion, diced

  • 1 teaspoon cumin

  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • 1 tablespoon Mexican oregano

  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced for added heat, optional

  • 1/4 cup lemon juice

  • 3/4 cup orange juice

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients for adobo sauce
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  2. Add the water and half of the vinegar to a large pot.

    Add the vinegar
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  3. Cut the tops off of the chiles and use a spoon to dislodge and shake out the seeds.

    Cut tops off chiles
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  4. Fry the chiles in hot oil for about 10 seconds on each side.

    Fry chiles
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  5. Add the chiles to the water and bring it to a boil. Cover the pot, turn off the heat and let the chiles soak overnight.

    Add chiles
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  6. Discard the soaking liquid. Puree the chiles in the blender with the tomato paste, remaining vinegar, and a splash of the broth until smooth.

    Puree chiles
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  7. In a large saucepan, sauté the garlic and onions in remaining 1 tablespoon of oil.

    Saute garlic and onions
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  8. Add the remaining broth, chile paste, seasonings, jalapeño (if desired), and juices. Simmer for 30 minutes or until the sauce thickens to your liking.

    Add remaining broth
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  9. Use as a condiment for your sandwich or alongside your protein of choice.

    Use condiment
    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga
  10. Enjoy!

    ​The Spruce / Diana Chistruga