Basic Salsa Verde (Mexican Tomatillo Salsa) Recipe

Photographs: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt

A basic salsa verde made with simmered tomatillos and cilantro.

Recipe Facts

Active: 5 mins
Total: 15 mins
Makes: 1 quart

Rate & Comment


  • 1 1/2 pounds tomatillos, husks and stems removed
  • 1 to 2 jalapeño or serrano peppers, stem and seeds removed
  • 1 small white onion, skin removed, split in half
  • 1 bunch fresh picked cilantro leaves and tender stems
  • Kosher salt


  1. Combine tomatillos, serranos, and onion in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat then reduce to a simmer. Simmer until vegetables are completely softened, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to make sure all sides are softened.

  2. Drain vegetables then transfer to a blender. Add cilantro and a large pinch of salt. Blend on medium speed until a chunky puree is formed, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a bowl, season to taste with more salt or lime juice if necessary, and serve. Cooled salsa can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Special equipment

Blender or hand blender