Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

Roasted Tomatillo Salsa -everything you need to know to make a delectable tomatillo salsa. This simple green salsa is great with tortilla chips or any Mexican meal. 

tomatillo sauce or tomatillo salsa with chips

No Garden Tomatillos for Tomatillo Salsa? Me Neither.

Hey, y’all! This is Kate from Our Best Bites and my blogging partner Sara and I are thrilled to be guest posting today because it means Maria and Josh are busy with their new little pea.

Every year, I have always been incredibly jealous of all my friends who tell me all about harvesting their gardens and canning all their fresh produce and eating fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchinis, and peppers. So this year, I decided I would grow a garden and that I would weed and water it faithfully and in the fall, I would can lots of stuff. My garden has been dead since June. What’s worse is that I’m not even really all that sad about it.

I have decided that there are gardeners and there are people who will eat the food from other people’s gardens. I definitely fall into the latter category. I’ll shop local, buy from roadside stands, and hit up the farmer’s markets, but I have a hopelessly black thumb and an ambivalence for keeping plants alive, both of which don’t help when it comes to gardens. (Side note: This is Kate, not Sara–in addition to being a fancy-pants blogger, Sara is also a horticulturist, so she’s way better at not killing her garden than I am).


Before this hot, rainless summer hit the Southeast United States and my poor garden shriveled up, I planted tomatillos with the sole intention of making this salsa. Lucky for me, the Garden Murderer, tomatillos are in season, widely available, and inexpensive right now.

ingredients for tomatillo sauce

Picking out Tomatillos

If you’ve never worked with tomatillos before, they are tangy little lime-green buggers that have a papery skin that are usually found near the ethnic produce like ginger, jalapeno peppers, and fancy mushrooms.

Because tomatillos are often completely covered by the papery skin, it can be hard to determine whether they’re good or not. If they aren’t shrunken into the skin and there are no soft spots, sticky fluid, or obvious grossness, they should be fine. However, I definitely recommend buying about 1/4 pound more than you need just in case you run into trouble (as much trouble as you can run into when you’re working with tomatillos, that is) and to account for that skin.

how to roast tomatillos

how to make tomatillo salsa - roasting vegetables

How to Make Tomatillo Salsa

For this tomatillo salsa, you’ll need fresh cilantro, tomatillos, garlic, onions, and jalapenos, plus a little olive oil or non-fat cooking spray to help in roasting the vegetables.
  1. Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
  2. For a milder salsa, seed jalapenos; otherwise, cut jalapenos in half
  3. Cut tomatillos in half, quarter onions, and smash garlic (you can leave the skins on or peel them–it’s up to you).
  4. Spread vegetables on a large foil-lined baking sheet, spritz with extra virgin olive oil
  5. Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes or until vegetables are tender/ beginning to char.
  6. When veggies are cool, transfer them to your blender or food processor jar
  7. Add fresh lime juice, salt, and pepper and pulse it until it’s as smooth (or not) as you want
  8. After blended, transfer salsa to serving dish, and stir in chopped cilantro and chopped green onions.
roasted tomatillo salsa in white serving dish
Yumminess. And almost fat and calorie free. Until you dip chips into it, but who’s counting, right?

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Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

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Roasted Tomatillo Salsa – following is everything you need to know to make a delectable tomatillo salsa.


  • 1 lb. tomatillos, husks removed
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 1 small yellow or white onion, peeled and quartered
  • 1 jalapeno pepper (if you’re worried about heat, remove the seeds and membranes; I do and it’s the perfect heat for me), cut in half lengthwise
  • A few spritzes of extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 c. chopped cilantro
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4-1/3 c. chopped green onions


  1. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and set aside.
    After husking the tomatillos, rinse them well in cool water (they can be sticky). Cut the stems and hard portions (if any) off the tomatillos and cut any very large ones in half.
  2. Combine the tomatillos, unpeeled garlic, onion, and the jalapeno on the lined baking sheet. Spritz with extra virgin olive oil until lightly coated and toss the ingredients with your hands to make sure they are all well-coated.
  3. Place the baking sheet in the preheated oven and bake for 15 minutes. If the vegetables have not charred, turn the broiler on to high and cook for 3-5 more minutes or until the skins of the peppers and tomatillos begin to turn black. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  4. When the vegetables have cooled, carefully squeeze the skin of the roasted garlic, releasing the soft, roasted garlic clove, into the jar of a blender or workbowl of a food processor. Add the remaining roasted vegetables and then add the salt, pepper, and lime juice. Process until the desired consistency is reached and then transfer to a serving dish. Stir in the chopped cilantro and green onions and serve with chips

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