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Mayan Chicken in Red Pipian Sauce


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  • 1 large ancho Chile, stem and seeds removed
  • 2 pasilla Chiles, stems and seeds removed
  • 4 chicken breasts
  • 1 cup pumpkin seeds
  • 1 cup chopped onions**
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped**
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large tomato, peeled and seeded
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon**
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon achiote* (optional)


Servings 4


Step 1

In a pot, cover the chicken with water, bring to a boil, reduce the heat, and simmer until the chicken is tender, skimming off any foam that rises. Remove the chicken and reserve the broth.

Soak the Chiles in a cup of the chicken broth to soften.

Toast the pumpkin seeds on a hot skillet, stirring constantly until browned, being careful that they do not burn.

Saute the onions and garlic in the oil until softened.

Combine the Chiles along with the broth they were soaking in, pumpkin seeds, tomato, cinnamon, allspice, onion mixture, and achiote in a blender and puree until smooth. Use more of the chicken broth to thin if necessary.

Simmer the sauce for 15 minutes. Add the chicken and simmer for an additional 15 minutes.


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