Sauces, Dips and Dressings

Grilled Salsa Verde

With only 5 ingredients, this Salsa Verde is an easy and healthy way to add a punch of flavour to almost any dish.

A fresh green salsa, prepared using tomatillos and serrano peppers, salsa verde is a staple at any Mexican restaurant. Usually served alongside tortilla chips or in addition to tacos, it adds a delicious burst of flavour.

We have tacos, of one kind or another, almost every week and through all the salsa’s I’ve made, it never occurred to me to try my hand at Salsa Verde until last week when I was walking through the market. There was a basket of tomatillos sitting next to a basket of serrano peppers, with a sign that said “perfect for making salsa”. Obviously, the sign wasn’t wrong.

I’ve never made anything with tomatillos before, so as often happens, I grabbed a bunch, then picked out a few things that I thought I might need, such as cilantro, limes and garlic and thought “I’ll figure it out when I get home”. It turns out that I didn’t need the limes, but otherwise, was ready to go.

I looked through several different versions of recipes for Salsa Verde. As with so many authentic recipes, there are often countless variations, based on different regions and traditions. For salsa verde, most of the recipes required the tomatillos to be cooked in some way. A lot suggested boiling, a few roasting, and in others, the whole mixture was fried in a sauce pan after it had been blended together.

Being that it’s Summer and I’m trying not to turn on my oven any more than necessary, I chose to grill the tomatillos and onion, then to blend everything together. It worked and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t taste test way more than was necessary to make sure I got it right. Seriously, I could drink stuff, it’s so good. Here’s how you make it:

6 large tomatillos     Grilled Salsa Verde

1 large onion

1 clove of garlic

2 serrano peppers, seeds removed

1/2 Cup cilantro

salt to taste

Preheat your BBQ

Remove the husks from the tomatillos and wash them. Slice the prepared tomatillos and onion in half, widthwise. Remove the papery skin from the onion.

Grilled Salsa Verde

Place both the onion and tomatillos flesh side down on the BBQ and close the lid. Grill the tomatillos for about 5 minutes and the onion for about 10 minutes.

While the tomatillos and onions are cooking, place the garlic, serrano peppers and cilantro into a blender or food processor, along with a pinch of salt.

Once they’ve finished cooking, add the tomatillos and the onions to the blender or processor. Blend on low speed or pulse. The salsa should be on the smoother side with a little bit of chunkiness for texture.


If you like this recipe, here are some others you might enjoy:


Fresh Salsa                                        Lentil Tacos



17 Responses to “Grilled Salsa Verde”

  1. I have made salsa verde before – always fermented raw. Interesting you made with a grill. I bet it adds a different layer of flavour!

  2. What a fab recipe! I always see tomatillos at the market and never pick any up. I always stop to scope them out, think about how cool they are, and then put them back. Lol. I need to step out of my comfort zone and just give them a go already — and this recipe has me excited to do that.

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