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Creamy Jalapeno Sauce (Copycat Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce)

This creamy Jalapeno sauce is so easy to make. It requires just a handful of ingredients and is ready in less than 5 minutes. It’s the perfect creamy, spicy sauce for dipping or for serving with your favorite Mexican dinners, like quesadillas and burritos.

overhead shot of creamy jalapeno sauce

This sauce is a close copycat of the delicious Taco Bell quesadilla sauce, but it uses Greek yogurt for a lighter, healthier base than ranch dressing. If you’re a fan of the Taco Bell jalapeno sauce, you’ll love this recipe.

I love this creamy jalapeno sauce served with this vegetarian taco bowl, drizzle over fajitas or in burritos. It’s also great for making this buffalo tofu wrap extra spicy!

Ingredient Notes

The exact quantities of the ingredients you need for this recipe are included in the recipe card at the bottom of this post.

Here, I’ve added a few notes on the ingredients you need, plus a few potential substitutions you could make if you can’t eat/find a certain ingredient.

  • Greek Yogurt: I love using Greek yogurt as the base for creamy sauces, and it works perfectly for this creamy jalapeno sauce. For a more traditional copycat of the Taco Bell jalapeno sauce, you could use ranch dressing. You could also use sour cream or a combination of both Greek yogurt and sour cream.~
  • Jalapenos: The jarred, sliced jalapenos in brine are a must for this recipe – they’re soft and spicy and have the perfect texture for blending into a smooth and creamy sauce. If you want an extra spicy sauce, you can double the amount of jalapenos used. We also use some of the brine water from the jar for this recipe.
  • Seasonings: A combination of garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, and cumin is what gives this creamy jalapeno sauce the perfect flavor profile.
  • Cilantro: While not essential, I love the fresh, zingy flavor cilantro adds to this sauce.
  • Lime: Likewise, a squeeze of lime adds some acidity and freshness to the sauce.
  • Hot sauce: Finally, hot sauce is what helped give this creamy jalapeno sauce its classic yellow color, the same as the Taco Bell jalapeno sauce. You could use sriracha, Frank’s red hot (my favorite!), or whatever hot sauce you most prefer.
creamy jalapeno sauce ingredients: yogurt, jalapenos and brine, cilantro ,hot sauce, seasonings, and lime

Subtitutions & Variations

  • The Taco Bell quesadilla sauce uses mayo and sour cream as its base. Greek yogurt gives it a lighter flavor as well as reducing the calorie content and increasing the protein in your sauce. You could substitute Greek yogurt for a combination of mayo and sour cream instead, though.
  • Omit the hot sauce for less spice (as a jalapeno sauce, this will still be quite spicy!)

How To Make This Creamy Jalapeno Sauce Recipe

Again, the exact step-by-step instructions and ingredient quantities will be in the recipe card at the bottom of this page. Below is an overview of making this recipe, plus some process shots to help you visualize how this recipe should turn out.

Step 1) Assemble Ingredients

Put all the ingredients in the blender and squeeze over the lime juice. 

Step 2) Blend the Jalapeno Sauce

Blend the ingredients on a short pulse until you have a smooth and creamy sauce.

Step 3) Adjust Seasonings

Taste the sauce and adjust the seasonings based on your preferences. You might, for example, want more hot sauce, more salt, or more lime for freshness.

Expert Tips!

Don’t overblend your sauce – a short pulse or two in your blender should be enough to get a smooth and creamy sauce. I use my Nutribullet to make this recipe, but a hand blender would also work.

If you don’t have a blender, you could dice the jalapenos and cilantro very finely and then combine everything by hand. It will be a slightly chunkier texture, but still tasty!

creamy jalapeno sauce in a blue bowl. A lime is in the background

What To Serve With This Creamy Jalapeno Sauce

This is my favorite sauce drizzled over a veggie taco bowl with rice, black beans, and lots of veggies. I serve it alongside some sliced avocado.

This sauce would also be delicious in this black bean burrito, drizzled over these crispy potato tacos, or as a dip for these delicious cajun fries.


This jalapeno sauce can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container or with clingwrap over the top of the bowl for 3-4 days.

I wouldn’t recommend freezing this recipe as the texture of Greek yogurt can change quite significantly when frozen and defrosted.


What’s the difference between chipotle sauce and creamy jalapeno sauce?

Chipotle sauce is another popular sauce for Mexican-style foods. Jalapeno sauce and chipotle sauce are very similar, with the biggest difference being the pepper used to make them. Chipotle peppers, used in chipotle sauce, are ripe red jalapeno peppers which are then smoked and dried to give them a smoky, deeper flavor than standard jalapenos.

This is why chipotle sauce is often redder in color and has a smokier flavor than jalapeno sauce.

Is this copycat Taco Bell creamy jalapeno sauce spicy?

This creamy jalapeno sauce will be a little spicy because of the jalapenos and hot sauce, but the flavors are balanced out by the addition of a creamy base – in this case, Greek yogurt. Using mayo and/or sour cream will also help to give the jalapenos a milder flavor in this sauce.

a creamy jalapeno sauce in a blue bowl with sliced jalapenos on top

What is creamy jalapeno sauce made of?

This creamy jalapeno sauce is made with pickled jalapenos, a yogurt base, and a blend of spices such as onion powder, garlic powder, cayenne pepper, smoked paprika, and cumin. It’s got a delicious blend of spice, tang, and flavor which comes together in 5 minutes and is perfect for dipping, drizzling and devouring with tacos, burrito bowls, and more.

What is a good substitute for jalapeño sauce?

If you don’t think this jalapeno sauce is your thing, you might prefer a creamier, milder sauce such as guacamole or this avocado crema. Straight-up sour cream also tastes delicious in Mexican dishes!

How do you thicken jalapeño sauce?
You shouldn’t need to thicken this sauce because the creamy base already helps to thicken it. If your sauce seems too thin, stir in some more yogurt, mayo, or sour cream.

Is the Taco Bell creamy jalapeno sauce vegetarian?

Yes, this jalapeno sauce is suitable for vegetarians. To make it vegan-friendly, use a vegan plain natural yogurt instead.

overhead shot of creamy jalapeno sauce

Creamy Jalapeno Sauce

Yield: 3-4 portions (~1.5 cup sauce)
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes

This delicious creamy jalapeno sauce is ready in 5 minutes and is the perfect blend of spicy, tang, and flavor. Perfect drizzled over tacos or as a dip as burritos!


  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • ⅓ cup jalapenos
  • 3 tbsp jalapeno brine
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro (optional but recommended!)
  • 2 tbsp hot sauce
  • 1 lime
  • 0.5 tsp garlic powder
  • 0.5 tsp onion powder
  • 0.5 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp cumin


  1. Place all the ingredients in your blender. Squeeze over the lime juice.
  2. Blend everything in short pulses until you have a smooth, creamy sauce.
  3. Taste the sauce and adjust any seasonings according to your preferences.


If you want a creamy jalapeno sauce that is an even closer flavor to the Taco Bell quesadilla sauce, use a combination of mayo and sour cream in place of the Greek yogurt.

I love using Greek yogurt because it's less calories and more protein, and has a delicious light flavor.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 52Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 3mgSodium: 31mgCarbohydrates: 6gFiber: 1gSugar: 3gProtein: 7g

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