This spicy, earthy ancho chile sauce would be delicious served with roasted chicken as well. Make it a meal: Serve alongside Cheese Grits. Source: EatingWell Magazine, January/February 1997

EatingWell Test Kitchen


Ancho chile sauce


Instructions Checklist
  • To make sauce: Tear chiles into long strips. Discard stems and seeds. Heat a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Toast chiles, pressing down with a wide spatula and turning once or twice, until they give off a roasted aroma, about 2 minutes. Transfer the chiles to a bowl. Add boiling water to cover. Let sit until softened, about 20 minutes. Drain.

  • Combine the softened chiles, broth, garlic, tomato paste, sugar and oregano in a blender. Blend until very smooth. (If the mixture is too thick, add just enough water to give the sauce a smooth consistency.)

  • Heat oil in a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan over low heat. Add chile puree and cook, stirring constantly, until sauce has darkened and thickened slightly, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and strain through a fine sieve. Adjust seasonings with salt and more sugar, if desired.

  • To grill venison: Preheat a grill or heat a cast-iron grill pan or skillet over high heat. Rub venison chops on both sides with garlic and brush lightly with oil. Season with salt and pepper.

  • Grill or sear the chops until browned on the outside but still pink in the center, 1 to 2 minutes per side.


Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate the sauce (Steps 1-3) up to 1 week ahead. Bring to a simmer before serving.

Nutrition Facts

261 calories; 6.6 g total fat; 1.8 g saturated fat; 145 mg cholesterol; 240 mg sodium. 837 mg potassium; 8 g carbohydrates; 2.7 g fiber; 1 g sugar; 41 g protein; 2382 IU vitamin a iu; 1 mg vitamin c; 15 mcg folate; 21 mg calcium; 7 mg iron; 53 mg magnesium; 1 g added sugar;