El Pato Tomato Sauce Recipe

Make this spicy sauce the star of your next taco night!

Elen Rustick By Updated December 24, 2022

This El Pato Tomato Sauce Recipe is a must-have for tacos, enchiladas, and nachos! It has the perfect tomato tang mixed with classic Mexican chili spice.

El Pato Tomato Sauce Recipe

You might recognize El Pato by its iconic yellow duck label. This Mexican brand of tomato sauce comes in a few different varieties, from original tomato to jalapeño flavor.

This spicy tomato sauce is made with a rich blend of garlic, onion, and chilis. It’s an easy way to add some kick and authentic Mexican flavor to whatever dish you’re cooking.

If you like spicy food, you can try adding this tomato sauce to dishes like spaghetti and lasagna too. One of my favorite hacks is to mix it into salsa or queso to get the perfect spicy dip for tortilla chips!

This El Pato tomato sauce is easy to make at home, and inexpensive too. All you need is a few simple ingredients and a food processor!

Picking the Best El Pato Tomato Sauce Ingredients

Tomato Puree

Tomato puree is made of blended tomatoes and helps add rich tomato flavor to salsa and sauces. It can be found near the diced tomatoes in the grocery store.

It’s common for cheap brands of tomato puree to include fillers like sugar and salt. So, make sure you buy 100% tomato puree.

You can also make your own tomato puree very easily. All you need to do is cook down fresh tomatoes and blend them in a food processor!


Chiles (also called “chilis”) are a mainstay of Mexican cuisine and provide endless flavor and complexity. There are so many varieties of chiles, with some of the most popular being jalapeno, serrano, and habanero.

Different varieties of chiles have different levels of spiciness. Fresh chiles will have more spice, whereas dried chiles have less spice but more complex flavors.

In this recipe, I’ll be using a chile called pasilla, which is the dried version of the chilaca chile.


Onions help add a dynamic sweet and savory flavor to dishes. Sweet yellow onions pair especially well with the tanginess of tomato sauce.

You can caramelize onions to unlock even more of their natural sweetness. Another option is to use shallots, which have a more delicate and mild flavor.

Mexican cuisine traditionally makes use of white onion. It has a lovely sharp flavor that tastes delicious in salsas and spicy sauces.


You can use fresh or powdered garlic in this tomato sauce. Fresh garlic is the best option for the most potent flavor and aroma.

Garlic powder provides a more subtle flavor. I like to use it if the tomato sauce needs an extra kick at the end.

Be careful not to mix up garlic powder and garlic salt. If you use garlic salt, make sure you reduce the amount of added salt you include in the recipe.


You can’t have a Mexican tomato sauce without adding a few spices! The key spices in this recipe are onion powder, paprika, cumin, and black pepper.

You can buy Mexican spice blends at the grocery store that include these traditional Mexican spices. Or make your own blend at home with ingredients you have in your spice rack.

The spice blend I used in this recipe includes chili powder, paprika, coriander, and chipotle.

El Pato Tomato Sauce Recipe_

El Pato Tomato Sauce Recipe

  • Prep Time5 min
  • Cook Time10 min
  • Total Time15 min
  • Servings1
  • Yield1 jar of sauce

Level: Easy




  1. Add Ingredients to the Food Processor

    Add the minced garlic, finely diced onion, tomato puree, spices, and vinegar to the food processor. Leave the water and oil out.

  2. Blend

    Blend the ingredients until they are smooth.

  3. Cook Sauce

    Set a frying pan over medium low heat. Add oil and sauce and heat while stirring.

    Add water and whisk until the mixture becomes a thinner sauce. Set the heat to low and let the sauce simmer for 5-10 minutes.

  4. Adjust Seasoning

    Taste the El Pato sauce and adjust the amount of salt if necessary. Once the sauce is perfectly seasoned, remove it from the heat.

El Pato Tomato Sauce Recipe serve

Ways to Enjoy El Pato Tomato Sauce

  • The best way to enjoy this homemade El Pato tomato sauce is with your favorite Mexican style foods! It will give a rich flavor to enchiladas, tacos, and burritos.

  • Cook with ground beef to create a tasty bolognese sauce!

  • Try mixing it with finely diced onion, white vinegar, fresh oregano, and coriander to create a delicious El Pato salsa. Serve with Mexican style homemade tortilla chips!

  • It’s also a great way to add a spicy kick to any tomato-based dish. Add some of this aromatic tomato sauce to your lasagnas, pizzas, soups, or stews.

  • This El Pato tomato sauce recipe is even a great alternative to sriracha on your morning eggs!

How to Store Homemade El Pato Tomato Sauce?

This recipe doesn’t include any preservatives, so it won’t last as long in the refrigerator as the canned version. You can keep this homemade El Pato tomato sauce recipe in the refrigerator for a maximum of four days.

Make sure to use a shallow airtight container or a glass jar for optimum freshness. You can also freeze this tomato sauce in a freezer-safe container for about three months.

The USDA recommends storing tomato sauce immediately to avoid bacteria. Don’t leave the sauce at room temperature for longer than two hours.

El Pato Tomato Sauce Recipe - Pinterest

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
  • 520Calories
  • 18.1g Fat
  • 89.1g Carbs
  • 16.7gProtein
Show Full Nutrition Label
Nutrition Facts
Amount per serving
Calories 520
% Daily Value*
Total Fat18.1g 23%
Saturated Fat2g 10%
Cholesterol0mg 0%
Sodium255mg 11%
Total Carbohydrate89.1g 32%
Dietary Fiber20.9g 75%
Total Sugars42.2g
Vitamin C0mcg 0%
Calcium205mg 16%
Iron18mg 98%
Potassium4063mg 86%
*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. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.