Canarian Mojo Sauce Recipe

(mojo verde, mojo rojo, mojo picon)

A spoonful of green mojo sauce sits above a jar of green mojo sauce

Mojo sauce has to be one of the most versatile sauces. It’s a classic Canary Islands sauce that’s made either green, red, or as a spicy picon. Mojo is most commonly served in Spain alongside salted boiled potatoes (Papas arrugadas or Canarian Potatoes). However, Mojo marinade is ideal for bbq meat or chicken or served as tapas for dipping bread or vegetables into, or as a spread on any sandwich. 

No matter how you use it, the beauty of mojo is how easy it is to make. Mojo requires no special ingredients and all you need is a blender or food processor. This mojo sauce recipe takes just 5 minutes to prepare and can be made in batches that will keep refrigerated for up to 1 week.

What is mojo sauce?

Mojo sauce is a popular sauce that originates from the Canary Islands of Spain. Mojo is commonly made in green (mojo verde), red (mojo rojo), or a spicy mojo picon. Mojo sauce is most commonly served as a tapas dish called ‘Papas Arrugadas’ and comes served with one or two of the mojo sauces alongside potatoes that have been boiled in salt.

Mojo Verde (Green mojo sauce)

Green mojo is typically less spicy compared to other mojo sauces. The main difference when making mojo verde is the use of green bell pepper (or green Italian peppers) and the addition of parsley or cilantro. As with all of the mojo sauces, other ingredients include; 

  • Garlic cloves
  • Lime juice (optional)
  • Jalapeno or chili
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Cumin
  • Vinegar
  • Stale baguette or breadcrumbs
  • Salt

Mojo Rojo (Red Mojo sauce)

Red mojo is made using red bell peppers and a selection of spices and red wine vinegar (instead of white wine vinegar). It is also quite common for red mojo to be mildly spicy, and we found the best way to achieve a comfortable amount of heat to red mojo is by using crushed cayenne peppers (see recipe notes below). 

Mojo Picon (Spicy red mojo)

Mojo picon is the spiciest of all mojo sauces. It is made with red bell peppers and can include any types of chili to give it heat. Peppers such as jalapeno or serrano peppers are both great options for adding some spice to your mojo picon.

Mojo sauce ingredients 

For the green mojo (mojo verde)

  • 2 large green bell peppers roughly chopped
  • ½ cup fresh chopped coriander (or parsley)
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • 4 small chilies (for some spice)
  • ¼ old baguette (or breadcrumbs) 

Red Mojo (mild mojo rojo)

  • 2 large red bell peppers roughly chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 small jalapeno pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • ¼ old baguette (or breadcrumbs)

For the spicy red Mojo (mojo picón)

  • 2 large red bell peppers roughly chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic minced
  • 8 small chilies (add more for more spice)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • ¼ old baguette (or breadcrumbs)

Mojo marinade

Mojo sauce also makes for excellent marinades, especially with pork, chicken, or beef. Come bbq season, it’s always a great idea to have a few mojo sauces made up and ready to go whenever it’s time to fire up the bbq. Mojo sauce is also great on seafood and vegetable dishes. 

Mojo marinade chicken

With virtually a few minutes of prep work, you can make a delicious mojo marinade for chicken dishes. This recipe works particularly well with the Mojo Verde or a less spicy mojo picon. 

To marinade your chicken, simply make the mojo sauce (Step-by-step instructions below), add your chicken to an airtight container, pour over your mojo sauce and turn your chicken pieces a few times to ensure they’re covered. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before cooking. 

Mojo marinade steak

Whether you have some beef or pork steaks for the grill, mojo marinade works great on both. Simply make your preferred mojo sauce and allow your steak to marinade for at least an hour before cooking. 

It’s also possible to brush on the mojo sauce whilst grilling. This works really well with mojo sauce for pork chops or cutlets. 

Mojo marinade with fish and seafood

Perhaps where mojo sauce really shines is when it is used as a marinade or dipping sauce for fresh fish and seafood. 

  • Green mojo is incredible as a dipping sauce with some grilled shrimp
  • A mild red mojo marinade works great with large white fish fillets.
  • Add some spicy mojo picon to some mussels and you’re in heaven! 
  • Crab claws and a few mojo dipping sauces also work really well!

How to make mojo sauce

Good news! 

Mojo sauce takes around 5 minutes to make. There are no fancy ingredients required and the only equipment you’ll need is a blender or food processor and some jars to store your mojo sauce in the fridge. 

  • Dice all your ingredients and add to the blender with the spices. 
  • Add the desired amount of heat (pepper or chili spice). 
  • Buzz for a few minutes, and slowly add the olive oil and breadcrumbs to achieve the desired texture. 
  • Mojo sauce is a thick sauce that will clump on a spoon when the texture is right. Perfect for marinading steak, chicken, or pork.
Two jars of red and green mojo sit on a counter top.

How long does homemade mojo sauce last?

Homemade mojo sauce uses fresh ingredients that should be safe to refrigerate for up to 5 days after it has been made. 

Mojo can be frozen, just allow enough time to thaw and use as required. Once frozen mojo sauce has been thawed, it should not be stored again. 

A spoonful of green mojo sauce sits above a jar of green mojo sauce

Canarian Mojo sauce recipe (mojo verde, rojo, picon)

Byron
Mojo sauce has to be one of the most versatile sauces. It’s a classic Canary Islands sauce that’s made either green, red, or as a spicy picon. Mojo is most commonly served in Spain alongside salted boiled potatoes (Papas arrugadas or Canarian Potatoes). However, Mojo marinade is ideal for bbq meat or chicken, or served as tapas, or as a spread on any sandwich.
5 from 3 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 0 mins
Total Time 5 mins
Course marinade, sauce, Side Dish
Cuisine Authentic Spanish recipe, Canary Islands
Servings 1 jar (300ml)
Calories 57 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 blender or food procesor
  • 1 large sealable jar

Ingredients
  

For the green mojo (mojo verde)

  • 2 large green bell peppers roughly chopped
  • ½ cup fresh chopped coriander or parsley
  • 4 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • 4 small chilies for some spice
  • ¼ old baguette or breadcrumbs

Red Mojo (mild mojo rojo)

  • 2 large red bell peppers roughly chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic minced
  • 1 small jalapeno pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • ¼ old baguette or breadcrumbs

For the spicy red Mojo (mojo picón)

  • 2 large red bell peppers roughly chopped
  • 6 cloves of garlic minced
  • 8 small chilies add more for more spice
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
  • ¼ old baguette or breadcrumbs

Instructions
 

  • Dice all your ingredients and add to the blender with the spices. Add the desired amount of heat (pepper or chili spice).
    2 large green bell peppers roughly chopped, ½ cup fresh chopped coriander, 4 cloves of garlic minced, 1 teaspoon sea salt, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon of ground cumin, 4 small chilies, 2 large red bell peppers roughly chopped, 6 cloves of garlic minced, 1 small jalapeno pepper, 1 teaspoon sea salt, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon of ground cumin, 2 large red bell peppers roughly chopped, 6 cloves of garlic minced, 8 small chilies, 1 teaspoon sea salt, 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon of ground cumin
    Mojo sauce ingredients in a blender
  • Buzz for a few minutes, and slowly add the olive oil and breadcrumbs to achieve the desired texture.
    4 tablespoons olive oil, ¼ old baguette, 4 tablespoons olive oil, ¼ old baguette, 4 tablespoons olive oil, ¼ old baguette
    green mojo sauce in a blender
  • Mojo sauce is a thick sauce that will clump on a spoon when the right texture. Perfect for marinading steak, chicken, or pork.
    Two jars of red and green mojo sit on a counter top

Video

Nutrition

Serving: 50gCalories: 57kcalCarbohydrates: 5.7gProtein: 0.9gFat: 3.7gSaturated Fat: 0.5gSodium: 126mgPotassium: 17mgFiber: 0.6gSugar: 0.9gCalcium: 10mg
Keyword 5-minute recipe, bravas sauce, Canary ISlands mojo, Mojo sauce
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

Mojo Sauce Prep Tips and FAQs

How long does it take to make Mojo sauce?

5 minutes. 

Can mojo sauce be made in advance?

Yes, mojo can be made in advance and can be stored in a sealable jar or airtight container for up to 5 days in the fridge.

Is mojo sauce spicy?

  • Mojo verde (green mojo) is not typicaclly spicy
  • Mojo rojo has a mild level of spice 
  • Mojo picón is the hottest and is quite spicy

Is mojo sauce healthy?

Yes, mojo is made from fresh vegetables and other ingredients and is perfect as a healthy dipping sauce or spread. 

Can mojo sauce be used as a marinade?

Yes! Mojo is awesome as a marinade and works great for virtually anything you throw on the grill. Marinade pork, beef, chicken, or seafood for around an hour and you’re good to go!

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