This Whole30 salsa verde is bursting with flavor and turns ordinary ingredients into a special meal. One of the secrets I've found to eating healthy is to include lots of flavor in my recipes so I don't miss all the foods that don't make my tummy happy - and this recipe is a perfect example because it is full of flavor but has practically no fat, no sugar, no dairy, no grains, etc.
I was getting ready to make my family's favorite white chicken enchiladas for a family party when I came into a roadblock. I haven’t made enchiladas in … years – I know super pathetic! (my poor family, is it considered passive neglect if I haven’t made my family's enchiladas in YEARS?)
The issue is this - the enchiladas are very dairy heavy, which doesn’t get along with my tummy at the moment – and let's be honest, heavy cream is not the healthiest choice…although I would argue there are much worse things you could eat other than heavy cream.
Anyway, I had a brilliant idea on how I could make my favorite enchilada recipe at least a little healthier than my mom's version and reached into the depths of my food pantry to find my one lone can of green enchilada sauce. It would surely be a healthy ingredient to add to my recipe…WRONG. The ingredient list was really not conducive to whole, healthy, non-processed foods. High fructose corn syrup is one of the prominent ingredients…really, why?
No problem, I will just go to the store and buy a different brand that doesn’t contain all the other unnecessary ingredients…wrong again. I am sure that there are brands out there that are fabulous, but they don’t sell them at my local grocer, and I was not in the mood to go on a wild goose chase looking for it…Onto plan B. I looked at the list of ingredients, picked out the ones that I liked, and decided to attempt to make my own.
Wow! Am I glad that I did! Not only did this taste AMAZING…like I could have sat down with an entire batch of my favorite Paleo tortilla chips (I buy them at Costco when they have them and when I'm not on a Whole30) and eaten the entire pot amazing, but it was super easy – way easier than I thought – so easy it made me wonder why everyone didn’t make their own, and this recipe made a fairly large batch.
Enough that I could make the enchiladas, eat chips and salsa to my heart's content, and still have enough to freeze for another go-around of the enchiladas in the near future.
In conclusion, plan B was a huge success. It ended up delicious and I love that it is made with fresh and healthy ingredients. I love success stories like that, because trust me, as a food blogger, there are a lot of bloopers that don’t make the highlight reels :-).
Please comment below and let me know what you think of this recipe. I would love to know if you like it as much as I do!
- Tomatillos - You need about a pound. The easiest thing is to just weigh them at the store before you buy them. If you haven't tried them before, they are a nightshade and technically a fruit like a tomato but have a husk that peels off easily.
They don't really taste at all like a tomato, but instead are a little sour and sweet with a bit of a citrus note and are very firm even when they are ripe and have a texture like gelatin when blended. I especially love the flavor they get when they are roasted.
- Jalapeños - You may leave the seeds in if you like the heat or take them out if you don't.
- Cilantro - Fresh is critical in this recipe and easy to find in the grocery store for an affordable price.
- Onion - I prefer white but yellow works too.
- Garlic - Only fresh garlic will do for this recipe. There is no substitute for whole, roasted garlic. The deep, rich roasted flavor is one of the best flavors in the world IMHO.
How to Make
Time needed: 1 hour.
I am surprised every time I make this how easy it is! There are only six ingredients, barely any chopping, and less than a minute of blending.
To start - peel the tomatillos, cut them in half, cut half in onion in half or fourths again, and cut a jalapeno or two in half again.
Roast the veggies on a cookie sheet in the oven for about 20 minutes until all the veggies are golden brown.
Wait until they cool down a bit or all the way, add the rest of the ingredients, then blend them until it is the right consistency
- Adjust the flavor
You can change the amount of spiciness by adding more or less jalapeno or adding the seeds or not. I like the kick of raw garlic but if you want a more mellow flavor, go ahead and roast all of some of the garlic.
Serve! It really is that easy.
This is bursting with flavor and is so refreshing and healthy. It just makes everything taste good. Plus, it's Whole30, Paleo, Clean Eating, Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Vegan.
- 1 pound tomatillos (about 6-8)
- 1-2 jalapeños (de-seeded and roughly chopped (you can leave the seeds in if you like your sauce especially spicy - I used 2 jalapeños and removed the seeds)
- ½ cup fresh cilantro
- ½ large onion
- 4-5 cloves garlic, peeled
- 1 teaspoon Real Salt , or more to taste
- 1 Tbl. lime juice (about ½ lime)
- Preheat the oven to 450 F.
- Rinse and dry the tomatillos and jalapeños.
- Remove the husks from the tomatillos and discard them.
- Cut the tomatillos in half.
- Remove and discard the stem from the jalapeños and cut them in half. Leave the seeds if you like it spicy or remove them for a more mild flavor.
- Remove and discard the skin from the onion and cut it in fourths.
- Place the tomatillos, jalapeños and onion on a baking sheet, cut side down (no oil is necessary).
- Roast in the oven for 20 minutes or until they have all browned and are tender.
- Remove the pan from the oven and let them cool slightly.
- Place all oven ingredients in a food processor or blender (I used a Vitamix ) along with the remaining ingredients and blend until you reach the desired consistency.
- Store in the refrigerator for up to five days or freeze.
- If you want creamy salsa, let the oven ingredients cool then add one avocado before blending.
- Be careful when blending hot ingredients.
- If it is too thick, add a little water (this especially happens after being in the refrigerator for awhile).
Keywords: homemade, healthy, flavorful