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21 October 2016

The best salsa verde recipe made with tomatillos and jalapeno peppers. Serve it up as a table sauce, hot sauce, or as a salsa with tortilla chips. This is the ultimate green salsa.

There are a number of ways to make an awesome salsa verde, or green sauce. Every Mexican restaurant has their own version and I have yet to encounter a bad one.

Even I have a number of different kinds that I make, all pretty much variations on a theme, like our Mexican Green Table Sauce made with tomatillos, jalapeno peppers and avocado.

Or our Homemade Green Enchilada Sauce with Roasted Tomatillos. The key ingredient in a good salsa verde is the tomatillo. Of course tomatillos alone do not a salsa verde make, but without them, it’s pretty difficult.

Tomatillos, sliced and ready to roast

Tomatillos are Key to a Great Salsa Verde Recipe

Tomatillos are those tiny round green fruits that look like tomatoes you find in grocery stores or the Mexican market, covered in papery sheathes and slightly sticky, which is a byproduct of the plant as they mature.

Do not confuse them with unripened green tomatoes.

While tomatillos have a slight bitterness to them, they are much sweeter and fruitier than unripened green tomatoes and make for a MUCH better salsa verde. The insides are meatier as well, where tomatoes are juicier.

In fact, tomatillos are not tomatoes at all, but come from a completely different plant.

Salsa Verde Recipe - Mexican Green Salsa with Tomatillo

This recipe is one of the simplest versions of a salsa verde. With only 8 ingredients, it’s quite ideal.

You can add in other ingredients to round it out to your preference, such as avocado, other chili peppers, herbs, even seasonings, but this one will serve all of your salsa verde needs.

Homemade salsa is really the only way to go when it comes to salsa.

Salsa verde in a bowl with a chip

 

How to Make Salsa Verde

  1. First, peel, rinse and dry the tomatillos, then slice them in half. Set them onto a large lined baking sheet.
  2. Next, slice 1 of the serrano peppers in half and set it onto the baking sheet with the tomatillos.
  3. Roast them at 425 degrees F. until the tomatillo skins begin to darken and char, about 15 minutes. Remove and transfer to a food processor or blender.
  4. Add the remaining ingredients, including the remaining fresh serrano pepper, and process until nice and smooth.
  5. Adjust for salt and serve it up! Or, you can refrigerate it and let the flavors mingle a bit more.

Simple, right? This is definitely a Patty’s Favorites recipe. She always wants this in the house.

Salsa verde in a bowl

Recipe Tips

The Heat Factor. You’ll get some good heat from the serrano chile peppers. They measure up to 23,000 Scoville Heat Units on the Scoville Scale. If you’re looking for a milder salsa verde, you can remove the seeds and innards. Or, go with jalapeno peppers, which aren’t quite as hot.

Fresh Vs. Cooked. For this recipe, I’ve chosen to roast the tomatillos along with one of the serrano peppers. The rest of the ingredients are added fresh. There are variations on this and you have multiple options.

  • Option 1: Roast only the tomatillos with one serrano, as I have done, then process them with the remaining fresh ingredients. This will give you a balance of roasted and fresh flavors.
  • Option 2: Roast all of the vegetables (tomatillos, peppers, onion and garlic), then process them with the remaining ingredients. This will emphasize the roasted flavor.
  • Option 3: Process all of the ingredients in a food processor, fresh, without roasting anything. This will result in a very fresh and vegetal tasting salsa, which some people greatly enjoy.
  • Option 4: Process everything fresh, as in Option 3, then transfer to a pan. Bring to a boil, then simmer the salsa verde anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes for a cooked down salsa. The salsa will darken and brown the longer it cooks.

Salsa Verde - Recipe

Serving Ideas for Salsa Verde

The thing about a good salsa verde recipe is you can serve it so many different ways. Serve it in a bowl with crisp tortilla chips and it’s a quick salsa.

Pour it into squeeze bottles to serve with your Taco Recipes and it becomes a Mexican green table sauce.

Pour it into small hot sauce bottles and it becomes a hot sauce for you. Seriously, it is that versatile. I’ve included a quick video below on how to make a quick salsa verde.

Give it a try. It’s fun! We love our salsa verde!

I hope you enjoy it.

Salsa Verde - Recipe

Check out my other Hot Sauce Recipes, too.

Frequently Asked Hot Sauce and Salsa Questions

Here are answers to some of the most common questions I get on other sauces:

How long will this salsa keep?

It should keep a week in the refrigerator. It’s all about the acidity. To be technical, target level ph for shelf stable foods is below 4.6 ph, but should probably be lower for home cooks, around 4.0 or lower, to account for errors. If you’re concerned, add more vinegar to lower the ph. Sauces and salsas made with fermented chili peppers will last even longer.

Where’d you get that sauce bottle?

I find them locally sometimes, but I also order through Amazon. Here is a link to some bottles I like (affiliate link, my friends!): Swing Top Glass Bottles, 8.5 Ounce – Set of 4. If you like the smaller bottles that most hot sauce makers use, here’s another link: Hot Sauce Bottles, 5 Oz – 24 Pack.

Can I process this Salsa for longer storage?

Absolutely. Just be sure to use proper canning/jarring safety procedures.

Check out These Other Popular Salsa Recipes

Salsa verde in a bowl, ready to eat

Patty’s Perspective

YUM. He’s right, this is one of my favorites of all time. Salsa verde is one my go-tos. It’s such a great recipe, definitely one of my favorite Mexican salsas. I love that it will keep in the fridge a while so I can grab it anytime I want, which is usually a lot. There is something beautiful about tomatillos.

If you enjoy this recipe, I hope you’ll leave a comment with some STARS. Also, please share it on social media. Don’t forget to tag us at #ChiliPepperMadness. I’ll be sure to share! Thanks! — Mike H.
5 from 3 votes
Salsa Verde Recipe - Mexican Green Salsa with Tomatillo
Salsa Verde Recipe: The Ultimate Mexican Green Salsa
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Total Time
30 mins
 

The best salsa verde recipe made with tomatillos and serrano peppers. Serve it up as a table sauce, hot sauce, or as a salsa with tortilla chips. This is the ultimate green salsa.

Course: Main Course, Salsa, Side Dish
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: recipe, salsa, tomatillos, verde, video
Servings: 8
Calories: 27 kcal
Author: Mike Hultquist
Ingredients
  • 1 pound tomatillos
  • 2 serrano peppers (or use jalapeno peppers for a milder salsa verde)
  • 3 garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 small red onion chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice (about 1 small lime)
  • Salt to taste (I use a teaspoon of sea salt)
Instructions
  1. Peel, rinse and dry the tomatillos. Slice them in half and set them onto a large lined baking sheet.

  2. Slice 1 serrano pepper in half and set it on the baking sheet with the tomatillos, skin sides up.

  3. Roast the tomatillos and serrano pepper at 425 degrees F. for 15 minutes, or until the tomatillos begin to char slightly. The skins will darken. 

  4. Remove and transfer to a food processor or blender. 

  5. Add the remaining ingredients and process until smooth. Adjust for salt and serve. Or, refrigerate in a sealed container to let the flavors mingle. Great with tortilla chips!

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

Heat Factor: Mild-Medium. You'll get a bit of a kick from the serrano peppers. For a milder version, use jalapeno peppers.

Makes about 2 cups. Calories calculated without tortilla chips. 

You can adjust the thickness of the salsa with a bit of water.

Should last a week sealed in the refrigerator.

Nutrition Facts
Salsa Verde Recipe: The Ultimate Mexican Green Salsa
Amount Per Serving
Calories 27
% Daily Value*
Sodium 2mg0%
Potassium 186mg5%
Carbohydrates 5g2%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 2g2%
Vitamin A 145IU3%
Vitamin C 9.5mg12%
Calcium 9mg1%
Iron 0.4mg2%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Salsa Verde - The best salsa verde recipe made with tomatillos and jalapeno peppers. Serve it up as a table sauce, hot sauce, or as a salsa with tortilla chips. This is the ultimate green salsa. #SalsaVerde #Salsa #SalsaRecipe #Appetizer #GreenSalsa #PartyFood

12 comments


  1. Very good version of the one I’ve made for years in which I Roast the onions, tomatillos, et al. Also, I sometimes add some fresh cilantro.

    Chili Pepper Madness is a National Treasure!

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Thanks, Alice! High compliments!! I appreciate it.

  2. A nice twist is to roast the tomatillos and peppers under the broiler until they become a bit charred. Then carry on with the recipe


  3. In Germany we had a pretty hot summer, this year. I managed to get 2.8 kg of tomatillos out of 5 plants which i grew in pots (and they keep on producing). The tomatillos are some kind of a purple variant, so it´s more “salsa morada” than salsa verde. Whatever, the taste is terrific!!! Your recipes are just awesome!

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      That’s great, Michael! Now I want to try the purple variety! Take care…


  4. Oh my goodness this was amazing.
    I made homemade chicken enchiladas with this tonight.
    Another great Chili Pepper Madness recipe.

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Thanks, Suzanne! Super happy you love it!

  5. I made this salsa today and it was green when I put it in the fridge. Then went to taste it a couple hours later and it is red! I’m afraid to eat it now…is it the red onion?

    REPLY: Strange! I’m not sure what could have happened there, unless it was overheated in thepan? — Mike from Chili Pepper Madness.

  6. Why is the bottled sauce red? What does the cooking do? Help to meld flavors?

    REPLY: Jon, depending on how long you cook it, the verde will darken, not really red, butdarker green. Yes, cooking helps the flavors meld. — Mike from Chili Pepper Madness.

  7. Made this salsa last year with young tomatoes, sooo good, I’m pretty excited because I grew zebra tomatoes an wanna try it….honestly, I used this salsa up quick

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