Home Video What Actually Goes Into Taco Bell’s Iconic Red Sauce? – The Daily Meal

What Actually Goes Into Taco Bell’s Iconic Red Sauce? – The Daily Meal

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What Actually Goes Into Taco Bell’s Iconic Red Sauce? – The Daily Meal

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The flavor and texture of Taco Bell’s red sauce can best be compared to that of an enchilada sauce — a smoky and rich tomato sauce with more of a watery texture than a traditional chunky salsa. The smokiness comes from a litany of spices such as salt and chili spices. Paprika, minced onion, garlic powder, chili powder, and jalapeño are also added to bring additional spiciness. And of course, sugar is included for sweetness. Despite this long list of ingredients, each of Taco Bell’s red sauces is certified vegan, with all sauces including soy and the Hot red sauce including wheat.

Additionally, Taco Bell includes some preservative ingredients, allowing the red sauce to stay fresh from production to sauce packet to takeout bag. Potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate (P), and maltodextrin are a few examples of these preservatives, with maltodextrin in particular used as a thickening agent in addition to extending the shelf life of the sauce. But if you want to make a Taco Bell red sauce dupe at home, just start from scratch with a can of crushed tomatoes and the aforementioned spices, or doctor up a jar of store-bought enchilada sauce. Keep it in your refrigerator for a couple of months, and no hard-to-pronounce preservatives are needed.

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