Mexican cuisine is full of complex and unique flavors, many of which come from the sauces that food is cooked in or topped with once it’s on the plate. Sauces, or salsas, come in all different colors and flavors—and though they will all be full of flavor, they will not all be on the spicy side. Here is a tour of some authentic Mexican salsas that might tantalize your taste buds the next time you dine out for Mexican food.


Salsa Rojo

Salsa rojo, or red sauce, is a tomato-based salsa that is cooked with roasted or dried and reconstituted chilies, which have the deepest and richest flavors. Aside from spice, these chilies add a hint of smokiness and a floral note to the pureed sauce, which is delicious when spread over enchiladas or smothered burritos.  


Salsa Verde

Salsa verde is usually a level spicier than salsa rojo. It’s made with green chilies, which are less sweet and hotter than ripe red chilies, and it’s blended with lots of garlic, tomatillos, and cilantro. It has a tangy kick and tastes especially delicious when combined with chicken or pork.


Ranchero Sauce

Ranchero sauce is a chunky red sauce with onion and tomato, and it is best known for being part of the dish huevos rancheros, which consists of eggs cooked in the sauce and served over toasted corn tortillas. The whole thing is topped with melted cheese and queso fresco for a delicious breakfast or unusual dinner entrée.



Avocados are a fixture of Mexican cuisine, and many people prefer their avocados in guacamole. This sauce is made from mashed avocado, garlic, cilantro, onion, tomato, and a mixture of spices. It makes a great garnish on any dish, and serves as a perfect dip for tortilla chips before your main course.


If you love the flavors of Mexico, check out Vaqueros for an authentic menu served in a historic building on Nuclues Ave. in Columbia Falls, MT. To learn more about their menu and hours, call (406) 892-3501. You can also stop in for lunch or dinner any time—no reservations are required.


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