Mojo Criollo (Garlic Sauce)

Mojo Criollo is a potent but delicious garlic sauce and a key ingredient in many Cuban dishes. Like sofrito, mojo criollo is an essential for making good Cuban food. Versatile mojo serves as a wonderful marinade for meats, a delicious sauce for vegetables and as a condiment on the table.

Watch a video on making plantain soup

Yield: About 2 cups

  • 1 full head of garlic – about 12 cloves (peeled, minced & crushed)
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup naranja agria (sour orange juice)*
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper

*naranja agria, the juice from Seville oranges, can be found in Hispanic food stores or in the international foods aisle of many supermarkets. If you aren’t able to find it in your local store, you can make a good substitute from equal parts orange juice and lime juice (½ cup sweet orange juice and ½ cup lime juice).


  1. Finely chop the garlic cloves.
  2. Add the salt and pepper and mash everything together using a mortar and pestle or the flat side of your knife blade.
  3. Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat until it is fragrant.
  4. Add the garlic mixture and cook just until the garlic is soft; be careful not to burn it.
  5. Add sour orange juice, stir and cook just until thoroughly heated.
  6. Store mojo criollo in a container with a tight-fitting lid. It can be refrigerated for a few days.