Looking for a versatile, creamy sauce to add a touch of smoky heat to your favorite Mexican dishes? This easy chipotle crema is the perfect zesty condiment!

Top-down view of a blender with orange sauce inside, placed on a black tile surface.

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Need a quick, flavorful crema for tacos, bowls, and more?

You’ll want to keep a batch of this smoky chipotle crema on hand! It’s an incredibly simple blend of Mexican crema (or sour cream), adobo sauce from canned chipotles, lime juice, and cilantro. Just whisk it together and you’ve got an instantly craveable, south-of-the-border inspired sauce.

The light creaminess gets a major flavor boost from the richly smoky, spicy (but not too spicy) notes of the chipotles, just like in our chipotle aioli. Yet it’s still nice and tangy from the lime juice with a fresh herb kick from cilantro. Use it as a zesty topping for tacos, tostadas, burrito bowls, grilled proteins, and whatever else needs a little pop of spice!

With just 5 minutes of prep, you can have this incredibly flavorful, south-of-the-border inspired crema on hand to elevate all your Mexican faves!

Cilantro, two limes, garlic, chipotle chiles in adobe, mayo, and crema are arranged on a black countertop.

Chipotle Crema Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup crema (or Mexican sour cream)
  • 1/4 cup sour cream or mayonnaise
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 2-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, plus 2 tbsp of the sauce
  • ⅛ cup fresh cilantro

Substitutions

  • Crema: If Mexican crema is unavailable, use regular sour cream for a similar texture.
  • Sour Cream or Mayo: Depending on your preference for creaminess, you may substitute one for the other or use a blend of both.
  • Chipotle Peppers: Adjust the number of peppers to increase or decrease the heat level.

How to Make Chipotle Crema

  1. Combine Ingredients:
    • Place the crema, sour cream (or mayo), garlic cloves, lime juice, chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, and fresh cilantro in a food processor.
  2. Blend Until Smooth:
    • Pulse all the ingredients until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides as necessary to ensure even blending.
  3. Adjust to Taste:
    • Taste the crema and adjust the seasoning as needed. If it’s too spicy, add more crema or sour cream. If it’s not spicy enough, add a bit more adobo sauce. Repeat until you achieve the desired balance of creaminess and heat.
  4. Chill Before Serving:
    • For the best flavor, refrigerate the crema for at least an hour before serving to let the flavors meld together
Shot of chilaqules with leftover chicken, salsa verde and eggs grilled in a skillet with foil. Topped with crema, limes, tomatoes, pickled onions and pretty much anything else that inspired me.

Girl Carnivore Expert Recipe Tips

  • Consistency: For a thinner sauce, add a little water or additional lime juice to reach your desired consistency.
  • Storage: Store the Chipotle Crema in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
  • Serving Suggestions: Use as a topping for nachos, a spread for sandwiches, or a dipping sauce for grilled vegetables.
  • Need a salad dressing with a little spice? Check out this chiipotle ranch dressing recipe.

What to Use Chipotle Crema On

Drizzle Chipotle Crema over tacos, enchiladas, or grilled meats to add a rich, smoky flavor. It’s also great as a dip for chips or fresh veggies.

More Saucy Condiment Recipes

This Chipotle Crema is a must-try for anyone who loves a touch of heat with their meals. It’s quick to prepare and sure to impress with its depth of flavor and creamy texture. Customize the heat to your liking and enjoy this delicious condiment with a variety of dishes.

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Quick and Easy Chipotle Crema

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Prep: 5 minutes
Total: 5 minutes
Servings: 16
Top-down view of a blender with orange sauce inside, placed on a black tile surface.
Our simple chipotle crema recipe delivers big, smoky chipotle flavor in a luscious, creamy sauce perfect for elevating Mexican dishes.

Recommended Equipment

Ingredients  

  • 1/4 cup Crema
  • 1/4 cup Sour Cream or Mayo
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsp Lime Juice
  • 2 – 3 Chipotle Peppers in adobo sauce plus 2 tbsp adobo sauce
  • cup fresh Cilantro

Instructions 

  • Pulse all ingredients in a food processor until smooth and creamy.
  • Test the heat level, and if it is too hot, add more crema. If it’s not spicy enough, add a teaspoon more of the adobo sauce and mix in. Repeat until the crema has a kick you love.
  • Pour the chipotle crema into a resealable glass jar or airtight container and store in the fridge until ready to use.

Notes

This crema stays fresh for 4 to 5 days in the fridge. Give it a good shake or stir before using. 
Add extra mayo or buttermilk to thin it out and turn it into a chipotle dressing. 

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 18kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 0.3g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 4mg | Sodium: 17mg | Potassium: 9mg | Fiber: 0.3g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 48IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 0.01mg
Course: condiment
Cuisine: Fusion, Latin, Mexican, Tex-Mex
Author: Kita Roberts

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Well, Hey, Y’all.

Kita is a multi-talented individual, boasting numerous accomplishments such as being an award-winning recipe developer, world-traveled professional photographer, and journalist. As the lead creative force behind Girl Carnivore®, she is widely recognized as an authority on all things meat.

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