Nine Fun Uses For Chipotle Peppers In Adobo Sauce

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So you’ve recently bought a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce for a Mexican recipe. You’ve used your tablespoon to bring the heat to the dish, and now you’ve got a whole lot left over. Nearly an entire can’s worth! What can you do with all those chilies and the extra sauce? Here are a few fun uses for chipotle peppers in adobo sauce that are easy to do. They all bring a little spice to your everyday eating and will certainly put a dent in those leftovers.

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Freeze it into chipotle cubes

Sure chipotle in adobo sauce will keep refrigerated for months, but you could get a little more creative. Pulse the remainder of the can with a hand blender to create a chunky sauce. Then place the sauce in an ice tray in tablespoon portions. You could put a little plastic wrap underneath to make it easier to pull the chipotle cubes out once frozen. These are excellent to throw in all sorts of dishes to bring a little extra spice, especially soups and stews where the earthy, smoky heat can be just right.

Create a spicy mayonnaise

Either alternative is a terrific spread for all sorts of sandwiches. Again, chop up the chipotles into a chunky sauce (or you could choose to totally puree it), and then simply mix it with mayonnaise or mustard to taste. You can control the heat here, so mix it in bit by bit to get just the right spice.

–> See our recipe smokin’ chipotle mustard which takes it even further

Make a spicy pasta sauce

You could opt to simply add some chipotle peppers in adobo sauce directly to a basic pasta tomato sauce. Again, flavor to taste. A little goes a long way here. That pasta sauce can be homemade or simply store-bought. See our recipe for chipotle alfredo sauce to see a homemade use case.

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Create a spicy cream cheese dip

This is about as simple as it gets, but oh so tasty. A little cream cheese, sour cream, and chipotle is a terrific simple dip to make. Try it for your next party. There are lots of recipes out there that take this basic idea and add a lot of amazing flavors.

-> Check out our chipotle lime crema recipe

Mix it with ground beef

Using this spicy ground beef for some tasty tacos is the obvious use case here. But why not give some spicy burgers a shot? In fact, a chipotle beef burger topped with a little blue cheese is crazy good. Another option is to use the ground beef in a pasta dish. They are all great choices that turn basics to dishes with a wow factor.

Chipotle Grilled Cheese
Upgrading grilled cheese is one of our favorite chipotle in adobo sauce uses

Add it to your grilled cheese sandwich

It’s such an obvious fit when you think about it, and it really turns that everyday grilled cheese into something special. Creamy, smoky, earthy, crunchy — there’s so much going on with this use. See our chipotle grilled cheese recipe as the place to start.

Make spicy butter

Take that extra chili sauce and mix it with softened butter. This tastes great as a simple bread spread. It’s also perfect as a spicy butter for corn on the cob and as the perfect tossing butter to create spicy popcorn!

Create your own hot sauce, taco sauce, or salsa base

You can puree chipotle in adobo sauce down to a thin sauce that can then be mixed with other ingredients to make fun homemade hot sauces. Or you can chop it a little more coarsely to add into a mild salsa base to add some additional smokiness and spice.

Mix it with eggs in the morning to spice things up

Lots of people put hot sauce in eggs, and the same principle is here. It adds a smoky flavor that a lot of hot sauces don’t bring to the table.

Use your imagination

These simple ideas are just the tip of the iceberg of what you can do with chipotle peppers in adobo sauce. Take them as your jumping off point for creativity. You’ll be surprised at how versatile this sauce can be in your kitchen.

UPDATE NOTICE: This post was updated on April 2, 2022 to include new content.
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