is mole gluten free

Many people who follow a gluten-free diet often wonder if mole, a traditional Mexican sauce, is safe for consumption. In this article, we will explore whether mole is gluten-free or not, taking into account its ingredients and preparation methods.

Ingredients in Mole Sauce

Mole sauce is made using a variety of ingredients, which can vary depending on the recipe and regional variations. However, the most common ingredients found in mole sauce include:

  • Chilies
  • Nuts (such as almonds, peanuts, or sesame seeds)
  • Spices (such as cinnamon, cloves, or thyme)
  • Chocolate
  • Dried fruits (such as raisins or prunes)
  • Onions and garlic
  • Tomatoes
  • Chicken or vegetable broth
  • Bread or tortillas

It’s important to note that some mole sauce recipes might contain additional ingredients, but the ones listed above are the core components commonly used.

Gluten Content in Mole Sauce

The gluten content in mole sauce primarily depends on the inclusion of bread or tortillas in the recipe, which are used to thicken and add texture to the sauce. Traditional recipes often call for bread or tortillas, containing gluten, as an ingredient. However, there are gluten-free alternatives available, allowing people with gluten sensitivities to enjoy mole sauce without any issues.

It’s worth mentioning that some pre-packaged or store-bought mole sauces may also contain gluten-based additives or thickeners. Therefore, it’s essential to read the ingredient labels carefully before purchasing or consuming ready-made mole sauce.

Gluten-Free Mole Sauce Alternatives

If you need or prefer to follow a gluten-free diet, you can still enjoy mole sauce by using gluten-free alternatives for thickening the sauce. Here are a few options:

  1. Gluten-Free Bread: Substitute regular bread with gluten-free bread slices, ensuring they are finely chopped or blended before adding them to the mole sauce.
  2. Gluten-Free Tortillas: Use gluten-free tortillas instead of traditional ones to maintain the authentic flavor and texture of the sauce.
  3. Gluten-Free Flour: Choose gluten-free flour blends, such as rice flour or almond flour, to thicken the mole sauce. However, keep in mind that this method might slightly alter the taste and consistency of the sauce.

By using these alternatives, you can create a delicious gluten-free mole sauce that suits your dietary needs.

How to Make Gluten-Free Mole Sauce

If you prefer homemade mole sauce and want to ensure it is gluten-free, here’s a simple recipe to follow:

2-3 dried chilies (such as ancho or pasilla)1. Remove the stems and seeds from the dried chilies, then soak them in hot water for about 15 minutes until softened.
1/2 cup nuts (such as almonds or peanuts)2. Toast the nuts in a dry skillet over medium heat until lightly browned.
1 teaspoon spices (such as cinnamon or cloves)3. In a separate pan, lightly toast the spices until fragrant.
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder4. Add the soaked chilies, toasted nuts, toasted spices, and cocoa powder to a blender or food processor, blending until smooth.
1 onion, chopped5. In the same skillet used for toasting the nuts, sauté the chopped onion until translucent.
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced6. Add the minced garlic to the skillet and cook for an additional minute.
1 cup chicken or vegetable broth (gluten-free)7. Pour the blended chili mixture into the skillet, stirring well. Add the chicken or vegetable broth and let the sauce simmer for about 20 minutes.

Feel free to adjust the spice levels, sweetness, or thickness based on your preferences. Serve the gluten-free mole sauce over grilled chicken, roasted vegetables, or any other dish of your choice.


While traditional mole sauce recipes often include gluten-containing ingredients, it is possible to make and enjoy gluten-free mole sauce by using alternative thickening agents. Additionally, it’s important to check store-bought mole sauce labels for any gluten additives. By following gluten-free substitutions or preparing mole sauce from scratch, individuals on a gluten-free diet can savor the rich and complex flavors of this beloved Mexican dish.