A simple recipe for PERFECT Tomatillo Salsa using fresh tomatillos. This Homemade Salsa Verde is bright, fresh, slightly acidic, and perfectly balanced.
Homemade Salsa Verde is a million times better tasting than anything purchased at the grocery store. While it is delicious served with chips, it is also great in Salsa Verde Enchiladas and Instant Pot Salsa Verde Chicken.
I have always loved a green salsa. Most people refer to this bright green salsa as Salsa Verde or Tomatillo Salsa. But my kids call it green salsa.
Whatever you call it, and however you serve it–on Honey Lime Chicken Fajitas, Black Bean Tacos, Southwestern Cobb Salad, you are sure to love this Homemade Salsa Verde, I bet you will even be surprised how EASY it is to make.
I just love the bright and fresh flavors of a Tomatillo Salsa. From the tart tomatillos, to the fresh cilantro, to the heat from the peppers, the balance of this salsa verde is simple perfection.
Just like so many other things, homemade is best. And Salsa verde happens to be quite simple to make at home.
Ingredients for Tomatillo Salsa
- Fresh Tomatillos: Tomatillos can be found next to the tomatoes at most groceries store. They are not green tomatoes, but instead a
- Serrano or Jalapeno peppers: I have used both serrano and jalapeno peppers in this Tomatillo Salsa. If you don’t like spicy verde sauce, remove seeds and veins of peppers BEFORE roasting. You can also only use one pepper to tame the heat. Serrano peppers CAN be hotter than jalapenos, it depends on the individual pepper.
- Cilantro: Cilantro is a must for authentic tomatillo salsa.
- Optional: I add in honey and garlic to round out the flavors. You can omit one or both these ingredients, but the flavor is superior when added.
How to make Tomatillo Salsa
Making Salsa Verde at home is really quite simple. It does take a few steps, but I promise you the taste of homemade Tomatillo Salsa will be so much better than anything you can purchase at the store.
Step One: Husk the Tomatillos
To husk a tomatillo, you can just peel off the skin and then rinse off the waxy residue on the tomatillo. However, the BEST way to husk tomatillos is to quickly drop in boiling water. After a minute, remove the tomatillos and the husk (and residue) will come right off.
Step Two: Broil the Ingredients for Salsa Verde
By broiling the tomatillos, onions, and peppers the break down and their natural sugars develop, which helps to balance the heat of this salsa. Broiling also gives the Salsa Verde a delicious smokey taste.
Step Three: Blend the roasted vegetables with lime juice and fresh cilantro.
Once ingredients are charred, place them in food processor or blender with lime juice, salt, and cilantro. Blend well.
Give a quick taste of the salsa. If you feel like the salsa is missing something, add in up to 1 tablespoon honey or sugar–which finishes this salsa perfectly and rounds out the flavor.
Step Four: Serve!
Can you make Tomatillo Salsa without fresh tomatillos?
That may sound like a crazy question, since the base of salsa verde is tomatillos. However, many people can’t find fresh tomatillos OR don’t want to mess with husking them.
You can replace fresh tomatillos, with canned whole tomatillos–usually found next to the Enchilada sauce in the Mexican aisle. Just rinse and pat dry the tomatillos and then roast as you would fresh tomatillos.
I personally like the taste of salsa verde with fresh tomatillos, but canned works in a bind.
Salsa Verde is Great Served with
- Honey Lime Chicken Fajitas
- Sweet Potato Black Bean Burritos
- Salsa Verde Spaghetti
- Instant Pot Salsa Verde Chicken
- Salsa Verde Chicken Enchiladas
- 1 pound fresh tomatillos
- 2 onions peeled and quartered
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2-3 jalapenos or serrano peppers *more or less for heat preference
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
- 1/2 cup fresh lime juice 3-4 large limes
- 1 tablespoon honey optional
- Bring large pot of water to a rapid boil. Drop the tomatillos into the boiling water for 1-2 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon. Once cool enough to handle, peel the husk right off the tomatillo.
- Preheat broiler to high heat.
- On a large sheet pan, toss tomatillos, peppers, onion, and garlic cloves with oil and 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt.
- Broil vegetables until charred on top side, 4-5 minutes. Remove from oven and flip. Return to boiler until the other side is charred, about 3-5 minutes.
- Place roasted vegetables and juices in blender or food processor. Add in lime juice, cilantro and another 1/2 teaspoon salt. Blend well.
- Taste and add additional honey and salt if needed.
- I have used both serrano and jalapeno peppers in this Tomatillo Salsa. If you don't like spicy verde sauce, remove seeds and veins of peppers BEFORE roasting. You can also only use one pepper to tame the heat.
- The honey is optional, but I find just a bit of sweetness helps to balance the flavor of the salsa verde.
- If you are Vegan, you can use sugar in place of honey.
- Salsa Verde will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days and can be frozen for up to 3 months.