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The Best Tomatillo Sauce

5 from 7 votes

Creamy, tangy, garlicky, and a little bit spicy, this Tomatillo Sauce is the perfect sauce for all your favorite Mexican meals. It’s easy to make, freezes like a dream, is versatile, and so gosh darn good!

Creamy tomatillo sauce in a jar with jalapenos in the background.

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Look at the color of that sauce! Mmmm, I could eat this stuff by the spoonful! It’s so easy to make, and it is so good on so many things. I’ve even served this as a salsa, gobbling it up with tortilla chips. I’ve got all sorts of ideas for you below, but the first step is to make it!

What you’ll love about Making This Tomatillo Sauce


  • It’s delish! Tangy, spicy, garlicky, and packed with flavor!
  • This sauce is so easy to make! 1 pan in the oven, and that’s it!
  • It freezes like a dream!
Tomatillo sauce in a glass jar with veggies in the background.

What’s A Tomatillo?

Tomatillos might look like green tomatoes, but they’re not tomatoes at all. Also known as Mexican husk tomatoes, tomatillo means little tomato in Spanish, but these nightshades are more closely related to gooseberries than tomatoes. They are sold in a papery husk that you’ll need to remove before dicing and wash them, too, because dirt and sticky sap can get trapped under the surface of the husks.

Look for firm, bright green tomatillos when buying them at the store. Size isn’t so important – they can be small or large – they all work in this easy Tomatillo Pico de Gallo.

Tomatillos on a white background.

Ingredients

  • Tomatillos – Look for firm, bright green tomatillos with the husks still on. Size isn’t so important.
  • Onion – I use yellow cooking onions in this recipe.
  • Jalapenos – Fresh jalapenos. Remove the seeds and membrane if you don’t like it too spicy.
  • Garlic – Fresh garlic cloves work best!
  • Cilantro – Fresh cilantro.
  • Cooking oil – Optional. Adds richness and some fat, but that’s it.
Labeled ingredients to make tomatillo sauce.

How To Make The Best Tomatillo Sauce

For a complete list of ingredients and instructions, please scroll down to the recipe near the bottom of this page.

  1. Remove the husks from the tomatillos and wash the sticky sap off them with warm tap water. Cut them into quarters.
  2. Peel and cut the onion into large chunks.
  3. Remove the stems from the jalapenos, in addition to the seeds and membranes, if you don’t like things too spicy.
  4. Peel and smash the garlic cloves.
  5. Add all the veggies to a sheet pan (baking sheet) and drizzle with cooking oil (optional).
  6. Roast the veggies in a preheated 400-F oven for about 20 minutes or until the veggies are soft and brown around the outside of the pan.
  7. Remove the pan from the oven -be careful! There’ll be scaling hot liquid on the pan. Let it cool.
  8. Transfer the roasted veggies and all the pan juices to a blender or food processor when they are cool enough to handle.
  9. Add the cilantro to the blender or food processor and pulse until smooth.
  10. Season with salt and pepper and use as desired.

How To Use This Tomatillo Sauce

  • Season it and spoon it over burritos to feast on verde wet burritos or green burritos.
  • Mix the sauce with sour cream and make Chuy’s famous deluxe tomatillo sauce for chimichangas.
  • Use it as a tomatillo salsa for tortilla chips.
  • It’s a great dip. Dunk your flautas (aka taquitos) into it.
  • Grilled shrimp and chicken LOVE this tomatillo sauce!
  • Use it with your favorite enchilada recipes.
Smoked chicken enchiladas in a casserole dish topped with sauce.
Deluxe Tomatillo Sauce on enchiladas, ready for the oven.

Chef Jenn’s Tips

  1. This tomatillo sauce will burn if you leave it too long. Check it after 15 minutes. If the veggies are soft with golden brown edges, they’re done.
  2. Add more garlic or jalapenos to suit your tastes.
  3. Make a double batch and freeze this sauce to use later. I vacuum seal it, and it keeps for a few years in the deep freeze.
  4. You can pulse the sauce to be as chunky or smooth as you like.

Recommended

Storage

You can keep leftover Tomatillo Sauce in an airtight container in the fridge for 4-5 days, or freeze it! I almost always make a double or triple batch of this sauce and vacuum seal it. It’ll keep in the freezer for a year or more if it is vacuum sealed.

Step By Step Process

Tomatillo Sauce in a glass jar.
Print Pin
5 from 7 votes

Tomatillo Sauce

Creamy, tangy, spicy, and garlicky, Tomatillo Sauce is the perfect sauce for enchiladas and burritos. Or, dip chips, flautas, and grilled shrimp into this easy peasy and oh-so-flavorful sauce!
Course Sauces / Spices / Dressings
Cuisine Mexican, Tex-Mex
Keyword jalapeno, sauce, tomatillo, tomatillo sauce
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 45kcal

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds tomatillos husks removed and washed
  • 1 onion chopped into chunks
  • 2 jalapenos seeds and membranes removed
  • 4 cloves garlic peeled and smashed
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil optional
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  • Preheat your oven to 400-F while you prep the veggies.
  • Add the prepped veggies to a sheet pan (baking sheet) and drizzle with cooking oil (optional).
  • Roast the veggies in a preheated 400-F oven for about 20 minutes or until the veggies are soft and brown around the outside of the pan.
  • Remove the pan from the oven -be careful! There'll be scaling hot liquid on the pan. Let it cool.
  • Transfer the roasted veggies and all the pan juices to a blender or food processor when they are cool enough to handle.
  • Add the cilantro to the blender or food processor and pulse until smooth.
  • Season with salt and pepper and use the sauce as desired.

Notes

Chef Jenn’s Tips

  1. This tomatillo sauce will burn if you leave it too long. Check it after 15 minutes. If the veggies are soft with golden brown edges, they’re done.
  2. Add more garlic or jalapenos to suit your tastes.
  3. Make a double batch and freeze this sauce to use later. I vacuum seal it, and it keeps for a few years in the deep freeze.
  4. You can pulse the sauce, so it is as chunky or smooth as you like.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.25cup | Calories: 45kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 0.2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.2g | Sodium: 3mg | Potassium: 344mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 235IU | Vitamin C: 19mg | Calcium: 15mg | Iron: 1mg

A Note on Nutritional Information

Nutritional information for this recipe is provided as a courtesy and is calculated based on available online ingredient information. It is only an approximate value. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site cannot be guaranteed.

Want More Delicious and Easy Recipes?

By Chef Jenn

4 thoughts on “The Best Tomatillo Sauce”

  1. 5 stars
    Wow, just wow, I love this recipe! I made a huge batch from the tomatillos that we got at our CSA pickup (which I had no idea what to do with, BTW). And now we’ve got this amazing sauce that we put on just about everything including scrambled eggs.

    Reply
  2. 5 stars
    I made your Tomatillo Sauce to experiment with my wet burrito recipe and I really like how my recipe turned out with your delicious sauce recipe. Easy to make and full of flavor! Thanks for a great recipe!

    Reply

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