This chile verde sauce is made with fresh tomatillos and chile peppers which are at their peak in the summer, but it freezes well. I make the sauce in large batches and enjoy it long after the harvest. It is a great addition to breakfast eggs and chorizo, to pork stew, as a fresh salsa and many other favorite Mexican dishes.
What is the Difference Between Chile Verde Stew and Chile Verde Salsa?
Although both the chile verde stew and salsa have a variety of names, “chile verde” usually refers to the stew version, with meat and vegetables where the green chiles are the star. Typically, chile verde stew uses Hatch green chiles. “Chile verde salsa” is typically made with tomatillos and poblano peppers.
As with other salsas, the verde salsa version is primarily used as a condiment, whereas chile verde (stew) is either a standalone dish or used to “smother” burritos.
Uses for Chile Verde Salsa
I freeze batches of this sauce in quart freezer bags and bring it out all year to enhance breakfasts or Mexican main dishes. There are SO many uses for this simple salsa! Here are some of my favorite uses:
- Sauce for over-easy eggs
- Topping for scrambled eggs
- Sauce for green chilaquiles
- Addition to burritos/ tacos or burrito bowls
- Addition to my all-time favorite “skillet dinners”
- In vegetarian queso y rajas (cheese and pepper) tamales
- Topping for grilled fish or meat dishes (like this Grilled Salmon)
The Case for Homemade Chile Verde Salsa
Where my daughter lives in Denver, Colorado, store bought chile verde salsa is present in nearly every store. However, there are so many reasons to make chile verde salsa at home.
One of the main reasons to make this salsa at home is it is simple. It only takes a few minutes at most and there are relatively few ingredients. Even the most novice of cooks can feel like a 5-star chef after making this salsa.
Another important reason to avoid the store-bought versions is taste. When you buy products at the store, you have less control over spiciness level, salt content or different additives.
We taste-tested the recipe below against this Costco version, and found that, although both versions were good, all four of our family members preferred the homemade version. Although the Costco version touts “medium” spice, it was too spicy for some of our family and not spicy enough for others. It also did not taste as fresh as our homemade version.
Here are some ideas of different ingredients you could add to the basic chile verde recipe below to change the flavor profile slightly:
- Lime juice
- Sugar/ salt
The final reason to make your own chile verde salsa is health. Store-bought products often have chemical additives or added sugar/ sodium. As with the taste, when you make this at home, you can more easily add or take out certain ingredients that don’t fit with your specific diet.
Other Recipes We Think You’ll Love
If you love this chile verde sauce as much as my family does, here are some other great recipes to check out:
Chile Verde Sauce
- 1 1/2 lb tomatillos
- 3 poblano peppers
- 5-6 cloves garlic
- 2 Anaheim or Jalapeno chile peppers optional: use ground Hatch chile powder to taste
- 1 bunch green onions (scallions)
- 1 bunch cilantro
- Remove papery husks from tomatillos and rinse. Cut the tomatillos in half and place cut side down on a foil-lined baking sheet. Place 5-6 garlic cloves (in their skins) on the baking sheet along with the whole peppers. Place under a broiler for about 5-7 minutes to lightly blacken the skins of the tomatillos and peppers.
- Cool tomatillos, onions and peppers for a few minutes. In a food processor or a blender combine roasted tomatillos, garlic, peppers, 2 cups chicken broth, green onions, and cilantro. If you opted for Hatch chile spice add 1-2 tsp to blender also as an alternative to the fresh chile peppers.
- Season to taste with salt. Can be used as salsa immediately or frozen to serve with a wide array of Mexican dishes.
Below is a photo of using the chile verde sauce in a pork stew with chile verde sauce.
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