Learn how to make easy Chipotle Sauce with just 6 ingredients and a blender! It’s a smoky and creamy sauce you’ll love drizzling over tacos, veggie burgers, and so much more. Plus it’s vegan friendly!

a spoon lifting up from a small glass jar of orange chipotle sauce.

If there’s one sauce that can make your meals 10 times as fun, it’s Chipotle Sauce. It’s a creamy, savory, and smoky all-purpose sauce you can drizzle over tacos, use as a dip for french fries, spread on burgers… The list goes on!

Made in a blender with cashews, chipotle peppers, and a handful of other flavor boosters, vegan chipotle sauce is something you can whip up whenever your appetizers or snacks need a little extra pizazz. Best of all, it’s completely dairy free, gluten free, oil free, and tastes complex and irresistible!

Why you’ll love this all-purpose chipotle sauce

  • 6 ingredients; 10 minutes. That’s all it takes! Cashew chipotle sauce is easy to make with a short list of simple ingredients and in less than 10 minutes.
  • Easy to make in a blender. Just pop all of the ingredients into a blender, blend until smooth, and you have a smoky, creamy, and subtly spicy sauce you’ll love using.
  • Use it anywhere! The rich and smoky flavors make this sauce a particularly perfect pairing for tacos, but it’s also incredible on burgers, wraps, with french fries, and so much more.
ingredients for chipotle sauce in individual bowls and glasses.

Ingredients needed (with substitutions)

  • Cashews – Raw, unsalted cashews are blended into a cashew cream, leaving you with a creamy base for the vegan chipotle aioli. Raw slivered almonds will also work in place of the cashews. Nut free? Make this recipe with sunflower seeds instead.
  • Water – You need fresh water (different from the water you used to soak the cashews) to help loosen up the sauce.
  • Chipotle peppers in adobo – Chipotle peppers are red jalapeno peppers that have been smoked and dried, then packed into cans with adobo sauce. Chipotle peppers are crucial to the sauce’s smokiness and depth of flavor, so try not to leave them out!
  • Garlic
  • Lime – Freshly squeezed lime juice is non-negotiable!
  • Salt
cashews soaking in a bowl of water.

How to make chipotle sauce

Find the complete recipe with measurements below in the recipe card.

Quick soak the cashews by placing them in a bowl and pouring boiling water over top. The nuts only take about 5 minutes to soften but you can leave them for up to 1 hour if needed.

Drain the water, then add the soaked cashews to a blender. Add the fresh water, chipotle peppers from a can of adobo, garlic, lime juice, and salt. Blend until very smooth.

ingredients for chipotle sauce in a blender.

Give the sauce a taste and add more lime juice or salt if needed. You can also thin out the consistency with a little more water.

Use the sauce right away or store it for later. Enjoy!

blended orange chipotle sauce in a blender.

Serving suggestions

The list of ways to use chipotle sauce is endless, but these ideas should help get you started:

a spoon lifting up a scoop of chipotle sauce from a jar of the sauce.

Frequently asked questions

Can you make vegan chipotle sauce without cashews?

Yes, you can easily swap the cashews for raw slivered almonds or sunflower seeds. Or, if you want to omit the nuts and seeds entirely, use 1/4 cup of vegan mayonnaise or plain vegan yogurt + 1 cup of vegan sour cream as the base instead.

Is chipotle sauce spicy?

The sauce is smoky and a bit spicy. Chipotle peppers can be spicy on their own but the cashew cream, garlic, and lime do a good job of tempering the heat. If you’re worried about it being too spicy, only use 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce. If you really don’t like spice, use a few tablespoons of the adobo sauce and leave out the peppers entirely.

How long does it last?

The sauce will last for up to 1 week when stored in an airtight container in the fridge.

Can you freeze the chipotle sauce?

Yes, the sauce should freeze well for up to 6 months. Remember to thaw it completely before using it again; sometimes it helps to re-blend it or whisk it very well to retain its smooth consistency.

womans hand holding a spoon in a jar of orange chipotle sauce.

Want more easy vegan sauces?

a spoon lifting up from a small glass jar of orange chipotle sauce.
5 stars (2 ratings)

Chipotle Sauce

Learn how to make easy Chipotle Sauce with just 6 ingredients and a blender! It’s a smoky and creamy sauce you’ll love drizzling over tacos, veggie burgers, and so much more.
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 10 servings


  • 1 cup raw cashews
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 chipotle peppers from a can of adobo
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/2 lime, juiced (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


  • Quick soak the cashews: Bring a few cups of water to a boil (I use my tea kettle for this). Add the cashews to a bowl or glass measuring cup and pour the boiling hot water on top to cover. Let them soak for 5 minutes, or up to an hour.
  • Drain the cashews and add to high powered blender. Now add 3/4 cup fresh water, chipotle peppers from a can of adobo, garlic, lime juice and salt. Blend until very smooth.
  • Taste; add more lime juice or salt as desired. Pour into an airtight container and keep refrigerated for up to 1 week.


  1. If you don’t have a high powered blender like a Vitamix OR you don’t want to use cashews, you can make this using vegan sour cream and vegan mayo or yogurt. Instead of the cashews and water, simply use 1/4 cup vegan mayo or plain vegan yogurt and 1 cup vegan sour cream. Blend using a blender or food processor until smooth.
  2. Sunflower seeds or raw slivered almonds also work in place of the cashews.


Serving: 1of 10 servings | Calories: 74kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 119mg | Potassium: 86mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 0.2IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 1mg
Course: Sauce
Cuisine: Mexican-inspired
Author: Nora Taylor
Did you make this recipe?Mention @nora_cooks_vegan_ or tag #noracooks!

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  1. My new favorite chipotle sauce. I’ve always struggled with the consistency of a cashew based sauce. This one is amazing! Another delicious Nora recipe.

  2. I’m looking forward to making this sauce for the potato tacos! I have a question though: would it be just as flavorful to use chipotle powder instead of the peppers, and if so, how much? Thank you!

    1. I really like the pronounced flavors and smokiness from the chipotle peppers but I’m sure you’ll achieve a similar result with chipotle powder. Start with 1 or 2 teaspoons and add more as needed. Hope this helps!

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