Moles and Pipianes/

Brothy Oaxacan Yellow Mole

Mole Amarillo

Yellow mole is often served with chicken, chayote, potatoes and green beans.  It is also delicious with grilled fish and mussels.

From Season 9, Mexico—One Plate At A Time

Makes one quart of mole


Servings: 1Quart


  • 1ounce (4 medium)dried guajillo chiles, stemmed, seeded and torn into several pieces
  • 1/2of a 15-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice (preferably fire roasted), drained
  • 1/2small white onion, cut into 4 pieces
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and cut in half
  • 1/4teaspoon cumin (preferably freshly ground)
  • 1/4teaspoon allspice (preferably freshly ground)
  • 1/4teaspoon cinnamon (preferably freshly ground Mexican canela)
  • 1teaspoondried Mexican oregano
  • 1quart chicken broth
  • 2tablespoons vegetable or olive oil
  • 2tablespoonsmasa harina (or 1 ½ tablespoons fresh masa)
  • 2freshhoja santa leaves, torn into pieces OR ½ cup roughly chopped cilantro


In a blender jar, combine the torn guajillo chiles, tomatoes, onion, garlic, spices, oregano and 1 cup of the chicken broth. Blend as smooth as possible. (A food processor will work though it won’t completely puree the chile.)

In a very large (6- to 8-quart) saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high. Set a medium-mesh strainer over the top and pour in the chile mixture. Press the mixture through the strainer into the hot oil and stir until it’s noticeably thicker yet still light orange in color, about 5 minutes.

Scoop the masa harina (or fresh masa) into a blender and add the hoja santa (or cilantro) leaves. Add 1 cup of the broth and blend thoroughly. Pour the mixture through the sieve set over the pan into the cooked chile mixture. Whisk until the sauce comes to a boil and thickens. Add the remaining 2 cups of broth and simmer for about a half hour. Taste and season with salt, usually about ½ teaspoon, depending on the saltiness of the broth, and serve with your choice of meat, seafood or vegetables.


  1. Fantastic! I let mine reduce down to just under two cups and served it with chile rellenos stuffed with manchego cheese. I’ve never seen a dish disappear so quickly. Even the self proclaimed relleno haters loved it.

    This recipe is a keeper for sure.

  2. Wishthis show was on more and later in the day. I love how you show mexican way thren how we can do it your way.

  3. Yes indeed, an excellent mole and similar to the one I learned to make this summer in Oaxaca. In the cooking class I took, our mole was not overly spicy. Therefore, I cut back on the guajillos from four to two. After toasting my dried peppers on my comale, I also rehydrated them (just as we did in class). This seemed to have alleviated the need for a strainer and turned out to be baby-bottom smooth. Delicious over almost anything! Trying it with tamales tonight. Thanks Rick.

  4. I am a HUGE fan of Mexican food and have been around Latinos for about 28 years but I have never been able to find Hoja Santa and its next to impossible to find Hoja de aguacate, please give me some suggestions, and I am your biggest fan!!!

    1. Hi Emily! Have you tried your local farmers market? (not sure where you live) How about a local Mexican grocery store? It isn’t very popular in most areas and it’s sometimes challenging to find it by us too. Good Luck!

  5. Made this with cilantro in stead of hoja santa leaves (can even find epazote here…). This mole left me wanting; the flavor just wasn’t right.

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