Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce is the orange quesadilla sauce used in the Taco Bell chicken and steak quesadillas. It’s a sweet and spicy ranch sauce that tastes amazing over a taco salad, quesadillas, chicken, paninis, and so many other foods!
Spicy ranch dressing isn’t only good as a quesadilla sauce, you can dip pretzels and crackers with this sauce or use it in meat, as a dipping sauce for fried calamari and oysters, including seafood. This spicy ranch dressing recipe is perfect over Doritos Taco salad, Chicken Quesadillas, Sandwiches, and fries!
What is Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce?
Taco Bell is known for its cheese and chicken-filled tortillas oozing out with this tangy, sweet, and spicy quesadilla sauce. This sauce is best for quesadillas although it makes a fantastic dipping sauce, too! This quesadilla sauce tastes just like the “Creamy Jalapeno Sauce” from Taco Bell that is typically used in their signature quesadillas. It’s basically a spicy ranch sauce infused with flavorful spices and is so versatile for many different foods!
How I Made the Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce:
My first attempt to make the copycat taco bell quesadilla sauce was with sour cream and mayo, as a result, it didn’t taste like the authentic Taco Bell chicken quesadilla sauce. So, that’s when the experimenting began. Comparing the ingredients label off a bottle of ranch and the ingredients from Taco Bell’s Creamy jalapeño sauce, I realized almost all the ingredients in a bottle of ranch dressing were found in the creamy jalapeño sauce ingredients!
So, I bought creamy jalapeno sauce from Taco Bell and used it as my taste guide. I started by using Hidden valley ranch as the base and added more spices and seasonings to intensify the ranch flavor. After much testing, and starting over I finally realized how important the addition of cumin was, I was so HAPPY! I even called my husband from the excitement!
Search no more folks! This has got to be the closet copycat for the Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce Recipe! I make this at our home as a staple sauce, especially when we’re having Tacos or Easy Burrito Bowls for dinner! And the sauce only gets better after sitting! The excitement is real, so use this sauce for quesadillas or make our chicken quesadillas to satisfy that legit Taco Bell craving!
Taco Bell Spicy Ranch vs Creamy Jalapeno Sauce:
Although this quesadilla sauce has a ranch base it is slightly different from the spicy ranch sauce Taco Bell has on its menu. The creamy jalapeno sauce (aka quesadilla sauce) is more orange and has jalapenos, whereas the Taco Bell spicy ranch has habanero peppers. Both sauces have different profile flavors that make each other stand out.
Here is a photo of Taco Bell’s creamy jalapeno sauce in comparison to my homemade quesadilla sauce: Taco Bell’s creamy jalapeno sauce is to the right and my homemade quesadilla sauce is to the left. Does Taco Bell’s creamy jalapeno sauce look like mine? Let me know your comments down below.
Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce Ingredients:
If you have ever wondered what’s in Taco Bell’s creamy jalapeno sauce, I tell you it’s super easy to make at home using simple ingredients. Taco Bell Sauce for quesadillas is basically my version of a spicy ranch recipe only created to replicate the spicy sauce from taco bell. I used my favorite ranch dressing to make it spicy but you can use any ranch dressing as the base. I find it best with Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing.
- Ranch Dressing: this Taco Bell spicy ranch is built from a bottle of prepared ranch dressing. This thick salad dressing is typically made with sour cream or buttermilk and is the perfect tangy base.
- Seasonings: I used to make the Taco Bell Creamy jalapeno sauce were cayenne pepper, paprika, cocoa powder, sugar, cumin, onion, and garlic salt. To substitute the seasoned salts you can use plain garlic or onion powder with the addition of salt.
- Hot Sauce: of choice that I used was sriracha sauce. Any spicy sauce with red chili peppers and garlic is a good substitute.
- Jalapeno Pepper: depending on what I have on hand I will either use sliced pickled jalapenos or a fresh jalapeno.
Healthy Quesadilla Sauce: use a lite ranch dressing as the base and use honey for the sugar. You can also eat this sauce with healthy greens like a salad for a light meal. Look for keto-friendly ranch dressings without the added sugars for a keto-approved sauce.
How To Make Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce:
Homemade chicken quesadilla sauce (spicy ranch dressing) is made easy. I love to blend everything in my 2-Cup Measuring Cup using a Hand Blender. This sauce recipe takes a few minutes to make and can keep for months! DIY and skip the drive-thru for the sake of this taco Bell quesadilla sauce that you can make in under 5-minutes!
- This sauce for quesadillas is made all inside a measuring cup. Pour 1 cup of ranch dressing into a 2-cup liquid measuring cup. Add all the remaining ingredients.
- Using a hand blender, blend all the sauce ingredients until smooth and the jalapeno peppers are pureed.
- Pour quesadilla sauce into a squeeze bottle and keep it in the fridge for up to 6 months. Prepared ranch dressing from the store will last up to 6 months homemade ranch dressing will go bad much quicker.
Tip: No jalapenos? Quesadilla sauce without jalapenos isn’t the same so if you don’t have fresh jalapenos use a tablespoon of sliced pickled to make a great substitute.
Creative Ways To Use Quesadilla Sauce:
This spicy ranch sauce can be used in so many delicious ways! We put it over taco salad and it goes best with a chicken quesadilla, but you can totally use this as a dipping sauce or side to many main dishes!
- Spread it over burgers on homemade hamburger buns or over scrambled eggs for breakfast
- Make a hot panini sandwich or drizzle it over a club sandwich loaded with bacon
- Use as a pizza sauce for a fiesta pizza or as a dipping sauce for wings
- Top it over Taco Bell Fiesta Potatoes or beef enchiladas
- Dip it with chips, fried zucchini, or sweet potato fries for a quick snack
- Use it as a Tex Mex salad dressing or as a marinade for chicken (spicy ranch chicken)
- Serve it with a shrimp or chicken quesadilla
Tip: make homemade marine subs like the restaurant if you need a good sandwich bread recipe for using this spicy sauce.
Storing Quesadilla Sauce:
I love how this sauce keeps! Prepared ranch dressing can keep for months after opening and adding some spices and pickled condiments (if using sliced pickled jalapenos) can last up to 6 months if not more! Simply keep the sauce in a plastic squeeze bottle to keep out any fridge odors. Avoid leaving out the sauce for long periods of time and keep it out of the sun. I’ve kept this sauce for months without it going bad.
Ranch dressing makes an amazing base for sauces! Outback and Chili restaurant have their takes on spicy ranch sauces and they are so easy to build from, with the flavors you want to infuse. Here are some ideas:
- Spicy Chipotle Ranch- is made with chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
- Spicy Avocado Ranch Dressing: puree 1 Tbsp of cilantro and 1 small avocado into this sauce only omit the paprika.
- Buffalo sauce ranch- add 1-2 tablespoons of your favorite hot sauce (like Frank’s or Tabasco).
- Creamy Jalapeno Sauce: follow this recipe for quesadilla sauce
What Sauce Is on Taco Bell Quesadilla:
Have you ever wondered what sauce is in a taco bell quesadilla? The name of that sweet and spicy Taco bell sauce is called Creamy Jalapeno Sauce and it’s found in the steak and chicken quesadillas. Taco bell uses it in their quesadillas, and some of their burritos, and you can also have it as a dipping sauce on the side!
Is Taco Bell Creamy Jalapeno Sauce Spicy?
Taco Bell Creamy Jalapeno Sauce is mildly spicy. You can see how to make spicy ranch above in the recipe card, it isn’t overpowering by the chili peppers.
Can You Buy Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce?
Walmart and Kroger sell bottled Taco Bell sauces including the taco sauce (mild and hot), creamy chipotle sauce, Baja sauce, Creamy Spicy Ranchero Sauce, and Avocado ranch. You can easily buy these sauces in stores or on Amazon, however, one sauce Taco Bell doesn’t sell in stores is the quesadilla sauce (known as the creamy jalapeno sauce.)
Quesadilla Sauce Tips
- Don’t have onion or garlic salt? Use onion and garlic powder with the addition of salt!
- Fresh or Sliced Pickled jalapeños work!
- Hidden Valley Ranch is proven to show the best results for making the creamy jalapeño sauce!
- This spicy ranch dressing recipe is great as a dip!
- For extra nutrition use fermented jalapenos.
- Bring this zesty sauce to a bbq cookout as a burger topping or side, people will love this sauce.
- Taco Bell copycat quesadilla sauce is best in quesadillas, tacos, or anything Tex Mex.
- Chicken quesadilla sauce is great with steak or seafood so dress it up with different poultry and meats!
More Mexican Recipes To Try:
- How To Cook Black Beans in the Slow Cooker
- Easy Chicken Quesadilla Recipe
- Chicken Fajitas
- Fajita Seasoning (tastes like the seasoning packet mix!)
- Soft Flour Tortillas
- Salsa Recipe for Canning
- Homemade Taco Seasoning Mix
How to Make Taco Bell Creamy Jalapeño Sauce:
Taco Bell Quesadilla Sauce
- 1 2-cup measuring cup
- 1 hand blender (or blender to puree the sauce)
- 1 cup Ranch Dressing (Original Hidden Valley Homestyle)
- 1/2 fresh jalapeño pepper (can use 1 Tbsp of sliced pickled Jalapenos)
- 1 tsp ground cayenne pepper
- 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1/4 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 tsp granulated sugar
- 3 tsp sriracha sauce
- 1/2 tsp onion salt (see substitute below)
- 1/2 tsp garlic salt (see substitute below)
- 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- Place all the ingredients into a 2-cup measuring cup. Blend using a hand blender until smooth or until the jalapeno pepper is pureed.
- Pour sauce into a squeeze bottle and keep refrigerated for up to 6 months*.
- Garlic and Onion Salt Substitutes: substitute 1/4 tsp of onion and garlic powder with the addition of 1/2 tsp of salt.
- For the closest results use Original Hidden Valley Ranch Homestyle dressing.
- **if using prepared ranch dressing from a bottle it can last up to 6 months in the fridge after making this quesadilla sauce. homemade ranch dressing will not last as long.
Nutrition per serving