Damn Delicious

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce

The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything – from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce - The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything - from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

Guys. This sauce. It’s absolutely everything.

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce - The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything - from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

It’s just one of those sauces to have on hand so you can use it on every single meal, including snack time.

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce - The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything - from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

So if you have some chips lying around, this sauce can work as the perfect dipping sauce.

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce - The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything - from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

If you have some leftover chicken from the night before, throw it on a bed of rice with this sauce. You have yourself a mini, and pretty epic, chicken bowl right there.

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce - The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything - from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

And as you can see here, fries are also an excellent choice for dipping purposes.

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce - The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything - from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

Yes, those are pineapples on my nails. They match perfectly with these waffle fries, right?

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce - The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything - from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

No, but really, this sauce needs to be made right now. I promise – you’ll always find a use for it!

Cilantro Jalapeno Sauce

The easiest 5 min sauce ever. And you can use this on anything – from grilled meats to fries and even chips for dipping!

5 minutes


  • 4 jalapenos, halved
  • 2 cups loosely packed cilantro, stems removed
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar


  1. Combine jalapenos, cilantro, sour cream, garlic, lime juice and salt in the bowl of a food processor. With the motor running, add olive oil and vinegar in a slow stream until emulsified.

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Why It’s A Smart Choice

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 TBS
Servings Per Container

Amount Per Serving
Calories 38.3 Calories from Fat 35.1
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 3.9g 6%
Saturated Fat 0.8g 4%
Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 1.3mg 0%
Sodium 3.8mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 0.6g 0%
Dietary Fiber 0.1g 0%
Sugars 0.1g
Protein 0.3g 1%

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Herbs are a great way to add a ton of flavor with no added calories. Plus, cilantro is a source of iron, manganese, and magnesium. It’s also a great source for antioxidants and phytonutrients.

Nutritional information provided by Jessica Penner, RD at Smart Nutrition.

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  1. Rated 5 out of 5

    Just made it to spoon over some enchilada’s I made with leftover pulled pork! I added some taco seasoning to my pulled pork, some cheese and enchilada sauce over all, more cheese and black olives!! Pico on the side too 🙂 Yum

  2. Rated 3 out of 5

    We tried it tonight to make share with friends for tapas tomorrow. We added more lime, cumin and himalayan salt to get it to a spot we liked it but it needed something, maybe avocado. It’s a good base!

  3. Rated 5 out of 5

    I’ve been making this for a few years now and it’s my go to whenever I make tacos or tostadas- pulled pork, chicken, shrimp , roasted cauliflower whatever. It’s also great drizzled over the leftovers meat and rice for lunches the next day. I will remove some/all of the seeds from the jalapeños to make it milder depending on how I’m using it and who will be eating it. It churches up my tacos so they’re company worthy, but it’s easy enough to make it any time.

  4. This is absolutely amazing.  I’ve been making it and eating it daily for months.  It make a great salad dressing too.  

  5. Rated 5 out of 5

    Excellent so fresh and unique 

  6.   This sauce has become a staple in our house! I make it every week. We love it on everything from eggs to salad to chips to tacos. Sometimes I sub Greek yogurt because we always have a lot of that in the fridge.
       We tried smoking the jalepeños with our new smoker and that was an awesome experiment I would highly recommend smoking atleast one of the jalapeños. Thanks for the inspiration and the amazing recipe! 
      The last time I made it, it turned out very runny. Any idea. Why this might be? 

  7. Rated 4 out of 5

    I wanted to try and recreate a cilantro sauce from a local restaurant, El Arepezo – so good!
    They have a “regular” and a spicy version – both are excellent!

    This was very fresh-tasting but really bland…
    I cut the recipe in half to try it – I tasted it after I mixed it all up and it was bland.
    I added more lime juice – 1/2 lime added, more salt and 1/8 c mayo for some body/tang, and some fresh ground pepper
    It tastes a bit more lively and I am looking forward to trying with some grilled chicken.

  8. I just tried this sauce, although I used only 1 jalapeno. It was amazing and whole family loved it! I will be making this again! Thank you.

  9. Rated 5 out of 5

    I just have to say thank you! This stuff is absolutely incredible. I did everything like you said, but used 1/3c olive oil because it was all I had. It’s seriously so good. 

  10. Rated 5 out of 5

    Trying not to waste anything during this pandemic and my cilantro was about to turn. This is AMAZING!!! I omitted the vinegar, halved the oil (which I threw in w everything in the beginning), had no lime, added a dash of garlic powder and am blown away by how good this is!  Fantastic, easy, delicious recipe!  

  11. Rated 4 out of 5

    I just made this and it’s soo good! I seeded 2 jalapeños but will seed 3 next time. The hubby doesn’t like too spicy and it’s a bit too much for him. I’m wondering how it would be with cream cheese instead of sour cream to thicken it up a bit for a dip. I plan on trying that next time!

  12. Rated 5 out of 5

    This recipe sounds ah-maaaazzzing. Do you think this could be used as a salad dressing for a black bean salad? 

  13. So delicious, I eat it with tortilla chips.
    QUESTION, can this be frozen?

  14. Rated 5 out of 5

    The best sauce ever! I added 1/4 cup more sour cream to tone down the taste of the apple cider vinegar. 

  15. I tried this recipe, and it was not great. My family loves spicy, but this was really hot, and flavor was very very bland. I went back and subbed the Apple cider vinegar for white vinegar, subbed olive oil for coconut oil, only used 1 jalapeño, and added some garlic powder, and it turned out MUCH BETTER. 

  16. How long does the saucekeep for?

    • A few days at least but as I am not an expert on food safety, I cannot really say with certainty. Methods for optimal food storage and shelf life should be based on good judgment and what you are personally comfortable with.

  17. I’ve made this many times.  We call it “ Awesome Sauce “  About to go make another batch that was requested by former tasters for a huge party .  So addicting and easy to make.  DOUBLE YUM!!!

  18. Have you ever frozen this sauce?

  19. Wow!!! I have made this 5 times in the past 2 weeks, and after the first time I started doubling the recipe. This stuff is amazing!!!! The first time I made it my husband and I were scouring the kitchen, looking for things to dip!!! We have used it as a dip for tortilla chips, on taco salads, scrambled eggs and as a veggie dip among other things. SO GOOD!!!! 

  20. I just made a vegan version of this substituting vegan sour cream. It’s delicious! I left the seeds on two of the jalapeños and the spice level is just right as I will be using it as a salad dressing and to pour over roasted vegetables. 

  21. Perfect way to use up the  fresh coriander (cilantro) & sour cream I have in my fridge!

  22. This sauce is GREAT. Thank you for sharing!
    It has this fresh flavor to it that works with almost any dish! I kept some of the jalapeno seeds in and it was a perfect spiciness. In place of sour cream I used plain greek yogurt and also plain soy yogurt, and both substitutions were delicious. I also only used one large clove of garlic, and even that was a little too garlicy, haha.
    Saving this recipe to make again!

  23. Anyone know if I can sub and oil for olive oil? Im seriously allergic to olives ?

    • Late reply, but think but I’m sure canola, vegetable, safflower or coconut would be just fine. I’d go with canola. 

  24. This was so good but soo hot! I even took some of the seeds out (and I’m not a wimp!) I used it for shrimp tacos.

  25. Try this as a dressing on cabbage to make the best slaw ever! Top a pulled pork sandwich or a grilled hot dog or bratwurst, you will not be disappointed!

  26. has anyone tried this without a food processor? I only have a blender 🙁

  27. Just came across your recipe and had to comment on one thing: Amazing how your nails match the color palette of your food. These little details won’t go unnoticed 🙂

  28. I’ve made this 3 times now. This now my go to sauce for fish tacos- it’s amazing!!!!! I use 2 jalapeños ribs/seeds and all and it’s plenty spicy. Just fabulous!!

  29. I made this sauce last night and loved it! we used it on left over corned beef and made street tacos. amazing balance of flavor between the meat and sauce.  Thank you. 

  30. I eyeballed the ingredients and added one ripe avocado, and it was perfect for street tacos. I also made it in a Magic Bullet and added everything except the avocado. I blended that last. Husband loved it, so its’ a keeper.

  31. Just wondering if anyone has tried freezing this. 

  32. wow this is great, very similar to an Indian green chutney (green chillies, cilantro and yogurt).

  33. Got the recipe yesterday and made it last night.

    Adjustment: Greek Yogurt for Sour Cream. Not better probably, but that’s what I had in the frig. The yogurt works very well with the chiles. Roasted garlic rather than fresh. Mellows it out a bit. Too much garlic can ruin this sauce. This is a KEEPER. I can see it on many things, especially fried fish tacos. Thank you. Chungah.

  34. Do you think it would be okay to sub some ripe avocados for the sour cream?

  35. I have a few questions. My dad absolutely loves a sauce just like this from our local Mexican restaurant, and I was going to make a jar of this for him for Christmas. I have done two test runs, and each time it comes out runny, almost soup-like. Both times I made it, I cut the recipe in half. I more or less eyeballed the measurements the first time, but the second time I did exact measurements. I’m also making it in a magic bullet, not a food processor, so I can’t add the oil and the vinegar while it’s running. I’ve tried adding more sour cream (even double the amount!) and more cilantro. I found that it was even runny/soupy before I added the oil and vinegar. I’m not sure what I’m doing wrong! I want the sauce to be more of the consistency in your pictures, but I could eat mine like soup! I’ve also tried chilling it overnight, which helped a little, but not much. Any advice would be great, thanks!

    • Maybe you can try using cream cheese instead of sour cream. Use 1/2 a lime instead of a whole one. Leave out the vinegar. I made this type of dip yesterday and added avocados. You can use 1 or 2 just eyeball it. I also used a bullet. I hope this helps.

  36. I took a chance and at the last minute I quickly made this sauce for a party last night, and I should have doubled the batch! Served it with tortilla chips and it was very yummy and well loved by the party guests. I received lots of compliments. Thanks for the recipe, I will be making this again. I can’t wait to try it on fries, chicken, rice, salad, bruschetta…..so many possibilities.  

  37. This looks amazing and I love jalapenos, but I hate cilantro (I call it the real devil’s lettuce).

    Do you think I could follow this recipe and just omit the cilantro?

    Thank you!

  38. Is there a way to replace or omit the oil?

    • The oil is actually a base for the sauce so I don’t think it’s favorable to omit completely. But as always, please use your best judgment.

  39. This sauce is unbelievable! I served it with chicken, pasta, and green beans but I think it would be great on pork chops or fish too! Halved the recipe and didn’t use the seeds, it was still wonderful! Thanks for this amazing recipe! 

  40. Delicious!! I removed seeds from 3 (out of 4) jalapeno peppers and it still got a pretty good kick. Great for putting on chicken or fish but a little too spicy as a dip (in my opinion). I used whole fat Greek yogurt instead of sour cream as I have that in the fridge and too lazy to go out to get sour cream. I will try add some avocado as another comment suggested to make it into a dip. Thanks for a great recipe.

  41. Hi Chungah, wow, this was fantastic! I modified slightly with 1/2 cup greek yogurt, added some frozen leftover parsley stems, added only 2 jalapenos + 1/4 cup water + 1/4 cup olive oil, may be 4 cups cilantro with stems + 1/2 avocado (to thicken up sauce) and it is yummy.  Having with yuca fries tonite for my hubby and I for a post Valentine’s dinner with a couple of lobster tails.  Thanks for a great recipe!

  42. I made this last night for the first time and it has changed my life. I will be putting this sauce on everything. It was super quick and easy, and it’s so versatile. This one’s a winner!

  43. WOW Look beatiful , Mexico food Style ?
    You should be join Masterchef…
    thank so much!!!!!!!!!

  44. Could this be made several days in advance and frozen?

    • Unfortunately, I cannot answer this with certainty as I have never tried freezing this myself – there were no leftovers left to freeze! Please use your best judgment for freezing and reheating.

  45. How long will this recipe keep in the fridge?

  46. Definitely have to taste this one this week.

  47. Yum! I bought the ingredients and my husband whipped it up while I made chicken quesadillas! Amazing combo and couldn’t get enough of this perfect topper! Can’t wait to have left overs with chips tonight! Thanks for inspiring us with a new twist to our dinners!

  48. Made this last night, this is way too much apple cider vinegar it ruined mine.

  49. This was really good, I substituted sour cream for half of a can of coconut milk to make this paleo friendly. We dumped it all over our chicken and vegetable salad and I think this is my favorite paleo dressing to date! My husband went back for seconds, which is the official sign of passing the test. This will probably be a staple in our kitchen now

  50. Is there any way to make this dairy free? Would it work to sub sour cream with mayo for example? Or something else maybe?

    • Unfortunately, without further recipe testing, I cannot advise an appropriate substitute that will not alter the overall taste/texture of the dish. But if substitutions must be made, please use your best judgment.

      • Plain Greek yogurt works well. I generally use Greek vanilla yogurt in recipes calling for sour cream. It sounds a bit weird, but it tastes great all the time, and I’ve not had anyone tell me they didn’t like the taste of the foods.

  51. Made this last night and OMG I’M IN LOVE WITH THIS SAUCE. We cut it to 2 jalapenos with all the seeds and ribs, but I definitely think we could up it to 3 next time because why not. ps. It’s runny right out of the food processor (I like it that way) but it firms up once you put it in the fridge overnight (also good).

  52. I love spicy and I love cilantro, even if my husband claims it tastes like soap (damn his genes!). I can’t wait to give this a shot. Very lively green colour you managed to keep in your sauce!

  53. Yes, I love this. I make a very similar version with Mexican crema instead of sour cream, which has a smoother taste to it. Also, a fun variation would be to use roasted jalapeno peppers. Yum! When I make it, yeah, it pretty much goes on anything. Nice!

  54. What a lovely recipe. Definitely have to try this one out this weekend.

  55. Hey.. I love your sauce and seasoning recipes,This looks like an even more versatile sauce,Your blog is always an inspiration and a safe bet. I haven’t made any of your recipes and been disappointed. I also love your step by step photos and the nutrition info.Love to be here.. 🙂 🙂 🙂

  56. My wimpy self would definitely have to remove those seeds but OH MAN! This sauce! Seriously going to drizzle/pour it on just about everything.

  57. I just made this sauce, question is should it be runny

    • It shouldn’t be too runny. If it is, you can always add more sour cream, to taste.

      • I love this recipe!  I used for chicken & carnitas tacos, then have used as a salad dressing!  Wonderful!! Try it on a salad! Refreshing!  Thank you for the recipe!

  58. I just made this, haven’t tried it yet. We are having a Mexican themed potluck at work on Wednesday and I had already bought all the stuff to make salsa, and had enough extra left over to give this a try.

    It looks super good and will have some with my dinner tonight. I’m thinking either fish or shrimp tacos with this sauce and homemade salsa. Winner winner!

    Your blog is always an inspiration and a safe bet. I haven’t made any of your recipes and been disappointed. I also love your step by step photos and the nutrition info.

  59. I think I might try low fat Greek yogurt instead of sour cream just to cut the fat and calories. Do you think that would work? The sauce looks amazing btw! Can’t wait to try it.

  60. This looks amazing! I always have way too many jalapenos in my fridge. This looks like the perfect solution to use them up!!

  61. Oh! My gosh! This sauce looks fabulous! Love the flavors!

  62. I am in LOVE with cilantro jalapeno hummus. This looks like an even more versatile sauce!
    So excited to try it!

  63. This sounds wonderful! I love your sauce and seasoning recipes. Can’t wait to try this!

  64. This looks too good! I imagine it over fajitas or tacos. Thanks! Great pics BTW. I use your recipes (and share them) all the time. You are a great resource.

  65. How spicy(hot) is this? Noticed you did not remove seeds of jalapeno