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Achiote Paste Recipe
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5 from 3 votes

Achiote Paste Recipe

This achiote paste recipe is perfect for seasoning many Mexican dishes, made from annato seeds, fresh garlic, citrus juice and lots of seasonings. Learn how to make it at home!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time5 mins
Course: Main Course, Seasonings
Cuisine: American, Mexican
Keyword: achiote, annatto, marinade
Servings: 1
Calories: 144kcal


  • 1/4 cup annatto seeds achiote (1 ounce by weight/28 grams)
  • 1 tablespoon Mexican oregano or use Italian oregano
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 1 clove (use 2 if you love cloves)
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 spicy chili pepper (optional - use a jalapeno for a touch of heat, serrano pepper for hotter, or habanero pepper for good level of heat)
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 cup bitter orange juice or use 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice + 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice + 2 tablespoons white vinegar


  • Add the annatto seeds (achiote), oregano, coriander, cumin, peppercorns and salt to a food processor or blender. Process to break everything apart. You can also use a mortar and pestle to grind them up.
  • Add the garlic, orange juice, lime juice and vinegar. Process to form a thick paste.
  • You can adjust with extra juice or a bit of water for a thinner paste.
  • Use as desired.


Makes about 2/3 cup.


Calories: 144kcal | Carbohydrates: 32g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 2g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 15mg | Potassium: 673mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 761IU | Vitamin C: 133mg | Calcium: 193mg | Iron: 5mg