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Recado for Tamales

One of the particularities of the Yucatecan gastronomy is the originality of their salsas, pickles and recados; also known as recaudos outside of Yucatan.

There are many types of recados but all are characterized by the potency of its aromas and seasonings – which makes them very famous. Their consistency is similar to a paste and well refrigerated they maintain their freshness and flavors for weeks. It is the best option and the healthiest to potentiate your dishes’ flavor in a very natural way.

In the case of the recaudo for tamales, its particular seasoning is used to prepare and condiment the tamale dough that later can be filled with typical stews like the cochinita pibil, some good peppers with cheese or even a chicken in pipian. With this addition the tamale dough also acquires a slightly reddish color.

About the Recipe

  • In this recipe many ingredients are going to be roasted and then everything is blended, it definitely is easy to make.
  • We really recommend using apple cider vinegar in the preparation due to its subtle and fruity flavor.
  • We are going to need achiote paste in the recipe that you can prepare on your own and then it can be used in the elaboration of different stews.
  • It is very important to use peppercorns because its flavor is more spiced.
  • Only 10 minutes are needed in the preparation.
  • Yields 1/2 cup of recado.


  • 6 Garlic cloves with skin (.8 oz)
  • 4 Epazote sprigs (1.4 oz)
  • 1 tablespoon of Oregano
  • 1 tablespoon of Achiote Paste (.3 oz)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of Cumin
  • 3 tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 10 Black Peppercorns
  • 1/2 tablespoon of Salt

  • Cookware

  • 1 Frying Pan
  • 1 Blender
  • 1 Turner

  • Directions

    Roast some Ingredients

    1. Put in a frying pan over medium heat:

    1. Roast the frying pan ingredients for approximately 1 minute, until they are lightly roasted and they release a lot of aroma; stir regularly.
    2. Transfer from the frying pan to a blender the spices that were roasted, then reserve.
    3. Separate of 4 epazote sprigs the leaves from the sprigs and discard the sprigs.
    4. Put in the frying pan over medium heat the epazote leaves that were separated and roast them for about 30 seconds, until they are lightly roasted; stir regularly.
    5. Transfer from the frying pan to the blender the epazote leaves that were roasted, then reserve.

    Roast the Garlic and Mix the Ingredients

    1. Put in the frying pan over medium heat 6 garlic cloves with skin and roast them for about 3 minutes, until all their sides are moderately roasted; stir regularly.

    The garlic cloves are roasted with skin so they won’t burn.

    1. Remove from the frying pan the garlic cloves and wait until they cool a little.
    2. Peel the garlic cloves that were roasted and put them in the blender.
    3. Also add in the blender:
    • 1 tablespoon of Oregano.
    • 3 tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar.
    • 1/2 tablespoon of Salt.

    1. Blend very well the ingredients.

    The Best Seasoning
    for Your Tamales

    *With this quantity of recado that was obtained you can condiment 6.6 lbs of tamale dough.

    Variation: The recado is also used to prepare the black filling.

    Did you like the Recaudo for Tamales?  

    Mexican Salsas

    Adobo Cream of Guerrero
    Chipotle Pepper Salsa
    Xoconostle Pico de Gallo
    Manchamanteles Mole
    Corn Guacamole

    If you want to buy the achiote paste this one has the best flavor.

    Prepare the recado with organic pepper and the spiced flavor will be much better.

    Give a Mexican touch to your kitchen.