Classic Salsa Verde with Tomatillos

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This authentic Salsa Verde recipe is tangy, vibrant, and delicious! Made from a base of tomatillos, onion, garlic, cilantro, and jalapeño or serrano peppers

Hi, friends! Today we’re talking Salsa Verde. Salsa Verde (“Green Sauce”) is a classic Mexican dip or sauce that’s used with chips, enchiladas, on tacos, in chilaquiles, and more! Basically, it’s a really tasty sauce.

And, believe it or not, it’s incredibly easy to make!

salsa verde in grey bowl with silver spoon on wood serving board

INGREDIENTS FOR SALSA VERDE

You only need 6 plant-based ingredients to make this tangy and delicious sauce:

whole ingredients for salsa verde on marble background

  • Tomatillos: unlike red salsas, salsa verde uses tomatillos as its main ingredient! Tomatillos are a variety of tomato also known as the Mexican husk tomato – because they grow with a papery “husk” that surrounds their flesh! They’re different from green tomatoes, and aren’t usually eaten raw. You can find tomatillos near the tomatoes in most grocery stores year-round, though their peak season is early summer to mid-fall.
  • Spicy Peppers: Salsa verde is traditionally made with Serrano Peppers, but Jalapeños work just as great! If you’d like your salsa to be spicy, leave the pepper seeds in; otherwise, remove them before cooking.
  • White Onion & Garlic: pretty much essential ingredients in any salsa recipe, these two ingredients add depth of flavor, body, and a little spice
  • Cilantro: cilantro helps to complement the citrus-y flavor of the tomatillos and adds a bright and tasty herbaceous quality to this salsa
  • Vegetable Broth: we’re transforming our salsa verde into more of a “hot sauce” than a salsa, and vegetable broth helps to add flavor to our sauce while helping with the consistency

Note: Salsa Verde can refer to both an uncooked salsa that’s often used as a dip for chips, and a cooked sauce that’s used in enchiladas, chilaquiles, and more. This recipe makes the cooked version of the sauce, but see the recipe notes on how to make a salsa as well 🙂

1. DE-HUSK AND RINSE THE TOMATILLOS WELL, THEN BRING THEM TO A BOIL WITH THE PEPPERS AND ONION

tomatillos, onion, and jalapeños in pot of water before boilingtomatillos, onion, and jalapeños in pot of water after boiling

Salsa Verde is traditionally made by boiling the tomatillos, onion, and peppers on the stovetop. That’s a win-win in my book, because it’s both faster and cooler than roasting them in the oven. Ie, your house won’t heat to an unbearable temperature if you make this recipe on a hot summers day 😉

If you like things spicy, simply remove the stems from your jalapeños and pop them into the pot with the rest of the ingredients. If you want your salsa verde to be mild, cut the peppers open and remove the seeds before boiling.

2. TRANSFER THE COOKED MIXTURE TO A BLENDER AND BLEND WITH CILANTRO, GARLIC, AND VEGETABLE BROTH

After the vegetables become tender, carefully drain them and then transfer to a large high-speed blender. We’ll also toss in some garlic, cilantro, salt, and vegetable broth at this point. It’s common for Salsa Verde to be flavored with chicken broth, so I chose to use a vegan chicken-flavored bouillon. Vegetable broth is a-ok too!

ingredients for salsa verde in blender before blendingcooked salsa verde in white pot

3. RETURN THE SAUCE TO A POT AND SIMMER FOR 3-5 MINUTES TO FINISH YOUR SALSA VERDE

Some varieties of Salsa Verde are finished after blending – this is more of a dip for chips. Traditional, though, the sauce is simmered again after blending. This helps all of the flavors to combine and for the garlic and cilantro to mellow out. It doesn’t take long at all, and you can use the same pot you boiled your tomatillos in!

After you simmer your salsa, let it come to room temperature before bottling and storing in the fridge, where it will last for up to 10 days.

close up photo of spoon spooning salsa verde out of grey bowl

WAYS TO USE SALSA VERDE

The uses for Salsa Verde are practically limitless! Here are a few of our favorites:

  • as a dip for chips (or drizzled over nachos),
  • slathered over these Spinach & Mushroom Enchiladas,
  • drizzled over burritos, taquitos, or tacos
  • spooned over Tofu Scramble for some Tex-Mex flair,
  • or as an all-around hot sauce that’s bright, tasty, and totally tasty!

bowl of salsa verde with onion, jalapeno, tomatillos, and cilantro

If you’re looking for more Mexican-inspired recipes, you’ll also love this Best Chunky Guacamole and this Easy Homemade Salsa!

Finally, if you make this recipe and decide to share it on Facebook or Instagram, don’t forget to tag me @FromMyBowl + #FromMyBowl! And special thanks to my friend Ana for her helpful guidance with this recipe 🙂

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Classic Salsa Verde with Tomatillos

bowl of salsa verde on marble background with jalapenos and cilantro

This authentic Salsa Verde recipe is tangy, vibrant, and delicious! Made from a base of tomatillos, onion, garlic, cilantro, and jalapeño or serrano peppers

  • Author: Caitlin Shoemaker
  • Prep Time: 5 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 Minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 2 3/4 cups 1x
  • Category: Side
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Tex Mex
Scale

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lbs (680 g) tomatillos, husks removed*
  • 23 jalapeño or serrano peppers, stemmed and/or de-seeded*
  • 1/2 white onion, cut in half
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) vegan chicken-flavored broth or vegetable broth
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil (Optional; see notes)

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil while you prepare the ingredients. Once the water is boiling, carefully add the tomatillos, onion, and jalapeño to the pot; return to a boil and cook for an additional 3 to 5 minutes, until the tomatillos turn a greenish brown color and are tender.
  2. Carefully drain the vegetables and set the pot aside. Add the tomatillo mixture to a high-speed blender along with the garlic, cilantro, broth, and salt. Blend for 30 to 45 seconds, until a smooth salsa forms.
  3. Return the pot to the stove over medium-high heat and add the avocado oil. Once the oil is warm, pour the sauce back into the pot and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes, until the sauce has thickened to your liking.
  4. Serve as desired; let cool completely before transferring into glass containers. Salsa verde will keep in the fridge for up to 10 days.

Notes

  • Tomatillos: Aim to purchase tomatillos with a loose outer husk, as this makes it mush easier to remove. If you are having difficulty, it helps to run the tomatillo under warm water while you scrape the husk off.
  • Spice Level: For a milder Salsa Verde, remove the seeds of the peppers before cooking; otherwise, leave them in for a nice kick.
  • Oil-Free: the oil in this recipe helps to mellow out the flavors of the salsa and make the tomatillos less acidic; you can choose to leave it out, but I prefer to keep it in.
  • Acidity: If you find your Salsa Verde to be a little too tart for your liking you can add sugar in 1 teaspoon increments, or add 1/8 -1/4 teaspoon of baking soda to help counteract the acidity

Keywords: salsa verde, classic salsa verde, green enchilada sauce, tomatillo sauce, tomatillo recipes, green salsa recipe, green salsa with tomatillos, tomatillo salsa

About the Author

Hey there, I’m Caitlin! I make easy-to-follow, wholesome, and budget-friendly vegan recipes that are mostly gluten-free and refined sugar-free. I’m also an avid yogi, love the great outdoors, am chocolate-obsessed, and enjoy eating almond butter straight off of the spoon.

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Comments

  1. This is an awesome easy recipe. Delicious. This was the first time I’ve ever use tomatillo at home and what a great discovery! I used this on vegan enchiladas and was a fantastic family hit! Thank you.

    1. We did it by weight – so about a pound and a half worth (using the scale at the store). Depending on size it would be possibly around 10? The number of tomatillos won’t be exact as weight is more accurate.

  2. I never realized how easy it is to make salsa verde! Thank you for this recipe – I will definitely be trying it soon!