Salsa Verde – Tomatillo Salsa

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Last Updated on January 22, 2021 by Chef Mireille

Tomatillo Salsa Verde

Make Taco Tuesday better with your own homemade Salsa Verde. This version is quick and easy but with the freshness that the bottled versions won’t have!

chips and salsa with text

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Are you a red salsa or a green salsa fan? For me, it was instant obsession the first time I tasted Salsa Verde.

My first exposure to Salsa Verde was when I went to college in New Mexico. At that time, only red salsa’s could be found here in NYC. I had become obsessed with Tomatillo Salsa Verde while living in New Mexico.

When I returned to New York, salsa verde was sadly nowhere to be found. I went into Tomatillo Salsa Verde withdrawal. I had to learn how to make it myself, which I did. Now Salsa Verde is easily available everywhere from Mexican restaurants to your local supermarket. However, making it fresh is still the best for optimal freshness and flavor.

I am sure you will end up loving this salsa as much as me and end up practically drinking it, as you will start putting it on everything. This recipe makes a large quantity so you won’t have to worry about it finishing too quickly.

Check it out!

This recipe is also available as a web story – Salsa Verde – Tomatillo Salsa Web Story

But before we get to the recipe, what is the difference between red and green salsa. Many people often wonder which is hotter salsa verde or salsa roja?

Difference between Salsa Verde & Salsa Roja

Which is hotter?

Many people assume Salsa Roja or red salsa is hotter than Salsa Verde, but that is not necessarily the case. There are a lot of contributing factors like types of chillies used, consistency of salsa (thin to chunky), quantity and recipe preparation. For example are the chillies roasted or are you using them raw? Are you using fresh or dried chillies?

So there is really no solid answer to the question Which salsa is hotter?

What’s the difference?

Salsa Verde is made with unripened chillies, which leads to it having a more acidic taste. Some people don’t like Salsa Verde because they find it a bit bitter, but that is palate preference. Some love the acidic taste. If you want to even up the acidic flavor a bit more, you can also add some pickled jalapenos.

Salsa Roja is made with ripened chillies and therefore, even though it is often hotter, it is also sweeter. It can be made with fresh chillies or dried chillies or a combination of both. Some versions may also include tomato.

Think about it – isn’t a red bell pepper sweeter than the green ones?

How to use Salsa Verde

  • enjoy with tortilla chips as a snack
  • use it on tacos
  • serve it with burritos
  • make Enchiladas Verde
  • add a little to soup for a little boost of flavor
  • serve it with loaded Nachos

The first thing you will want to do is make these Vegetarian Enchiladas. This is a decadent and rich Vegetarian entree that is perfect to serve in the approaching holiday season. Bring a little Latin flavor to your holiday table.

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Here are some delicious recipes you can enjoy with this Salsa Verde

Mexican Recipes

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See how easy it is to make this traditional Salsa Verde recipe!

The Ingredients

While the chillies use can vary, one required ingredient for Salsa Verde are tomatillos.

These are small green tomatoes that grow inside a paper husk. If you live in a part of the world where tomatillos aren’t available, you can substitute green gooseberries or just regular green tomatoes.

However tomatillos are more acidic than green tomatoes or gooseberries.

In this version, I have used poblanos and serranos. Poblano is the sweetest of all green chillies so have a mild heat index. The serrano provides and heat and you can add more serranos or jalapenos if you would like a hotter salsa.

I would categorize this version as medium hot.

Of course, it is subjective to whether or not you discard the seeds. If you remove all of the seeds from the poblanos and serrano, it will be a bit milder. I usually remove the seeds from the poblanos and leave the seeds in the serrano.

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Grab your chips and dig in!

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Recipe FAQ

Can I freeze Salsa Verde

Yes. I often keep one jar in use and freeze the rest and take out as needed.

Does Salsa Verde need to be refrigerated?

Yes unless you follow preservation methods for bottling it. Then it can remain a shelf stable ingredient until it is opened. See link below for bottling.

What if I can’t find tomatillos?

While not exactly the same flavor profile, you can substitute regular green tomatoes or gooseberries.

For bottling procedures, you can find all the info in this jam post here.

OK so Salsa Verde lovers, what do you need to make this delicious salsa?

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now here’s your Shopping List to make your own bottles of Salsa Verde!

Ingredient List

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How to Make Salsa Verde

First is prepping the vegetables. Remove the paper husk from the tomatillos and quarter them.

Recipe Twitter Template

Chop the peppers and onions. Leave the seeds in for a spicier version!

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Saute the peppers and onions with the garlic, until vegetables are softened.

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Add the tomatillos and seasonings! While not a traditional ingredient, the bouillon cubes definitely elevate the flavor!

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Let it cool for a few minutes and then it’s puree time!

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Transfer the salsa to glass jars. Once cooled at room temperature, chill overnight in the refrigerator. You can then freeze some of it or follow proper bottling procedures to make it shelf stable.

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chips and salsa with text
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5 from 7 votes
SAVE THIS RECIPE

Salsa Verde – Mexican Tomatillo Salsa

Salsa Verde is a versatile condiment that can be used as a dip, garnish or addition to soups.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Total Time35 mins
Course: Condiments
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 32 people
Calories: 25kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 small red onions
  • 1 bunch scallions
  • 2 medium poblanos
  • 1 large serrano about 4”
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 6 crushed garlic cloves
  • 2 lbs. quartered tomatillos
  • 6 cups water
  • 3 mini vegetable boillon cubes
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon ground oregano
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt
  • 1 ½ teaspoons sugar
  • juice of 2 limes about 2 tablespoons

Instructions

  • Coarsely chop onions, scallions, poblanos and serrano peppers.
  • In a large pot, heat oil.
  • Add chopped vegetables and garlic. Saute for about 5 minutes, until the vegetables are softened.
  • Add tomatillos, water and bouillon cubes.
  • Add cumin and oregano and stir combine.
  • Bring to a boil.
  • Reduce to a simmer and cook for 15-20 minutes, until the vegetables are soft.
  • Leave to cool for a few minutes.
  • Transfer to a blender with the cilantro, salt, sugar and lime juice. Puree until smooth.
  • Transfer to glass jars and chill in the refrigerator overnight or follow canning procedures for bottling.

Video

Notes

This recipe will yield approximately 2 quarts.
Instead of the water and bouillon cubes, you can use vegetable broth.
If you cannot find tomatillos, regular green onions or gooseberries can be substituted.
Remember if you like it hotter, add more serranos and leave the seeds in!
 

Nutrition

Calories: 25kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 176mg | Potassium: 107mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 79IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 11mg | Iron: 1mg
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Salsa Verde - Tomatillo Salsa
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About Chef Mireille

CHEF MIREILLE - AUTHOR, RECIPE DEVELOPER AND PHOTOGRAPHER FOR Global Kitchen Travels
***
Chef Mireille is a NYC based freelance chef instructor and food photographer. Due to her very diverse family background, she was able to travel and learn about global cultures and flavors from a young age. Her passion for culture, cooking, history and education had made her an expert on developing traditional globally inspired recipes & delicious fusion cuisine.
Her extensive travel history provides a plethora of background information and Travel Tips!

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Usha

    Homemade salsa is always better than the store bought. Salsa verde has turned out so good and it is always worth making it home when it can be used in almost any dish. Good one for the theme

  2. harini

    Thinking about tomatillos, my mouth starts watering. One of my fav vegetable. I make chutney all the time. Next time around, I should try making this salsa verde.

  3. Sandhya Ramakrishnan

    salsa Verse is something we also eat at Mexican restaurants. My husband loves it on everything. I have never made it at home yet. I am going to bookmark this and try soon. I will make it before I make enchilada next week, so I can use this instead of the enchilada sauce.

  4. CRYSTAL HUGHES

    5 stars
    This is such a lovely recipe. I love that you can make it at home and eliminate all the preservatives in the store-bought ones.

    • Chef Mireille

      Thank you Crystal I think anything you can make at home is always better. Not only does it not have the preservatives, but you are able to customize it with your own preferences. Like this salsa, you can add more or less serrano chillies depending how spicy you like your salsa.

  5. Bintu | Recipes From A Pantry

    5 stars
    This sounds so fresh and delicious – you can’t beat a homemade salsa verde especially when it is as quick and easy to make as this.

  6. Mina Joshi

    Wow, This looks like my kind of salsa which has the heat and the flavours I like. I hadn’t realised how easy it is to make it at home without preservatives and food colours.

  7. Nayna KanabarnAYN

    5 stars
    Nothing beats the taSte of a salsa that is freshly made at home from scratch. This Salsa Verde looks so tasty nad flavoursome, I would love to enjoy it with a bowl of tortilla chips whilst watching TV.

  8. Priya Vj

    5 stars
    I have tasted this once or twice at a Mexican restaurant and love the tangy and spicy flavor of the salsa. Your recipe looks like a breeze to make it at home . The home made ones are anytime better and free from preservatives which is healthier as we know what we are eating. Surely will try these with green tomatoes which are available easily in India

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