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Verdé Enchilada Sauce

Vegetarian

Go ahead and ditch the store-bought enchilada sauce. Trust me. This homemade verdé enchilada sauce is super easy to prep, inexpensive, and so so tasty. Naturally gluten-free and vegan.

verde enchilada sauce in jar on table with bunch of cilantro and a tomatillo shot from above

In my house, we have enchiladas quite frequently. For years I purchase store-bought enchilada sauce. You know, that stuff in the cans?

Truth be told, it’s not the worse thing. It’s convenient, inexpensive, and doesn’t taste all that bad. BUT enchilada sauce from scratch is SO much better. So much so that I will never purchase another can from the store ever again.

This enchilada sauce is incredibly simple to make and takes less than 30 minutes, most of which is hands-off. The prep time is seriously only five minutes. If that!

So aside from the ease, you may be wondering what makes this sauce a better alternative to that canned stuff? It all comes down to freshness in my opinion. I mean, what doesn’t taste better fresh?

Verde enchilada sauces use fresh ingredients as opposed to red sauces with use a combination of both fresh produce and dehydrated peppers. While red enchilada sauces are typically richer, green (verdé) sauces are brighter and more acidic.

The acidity comes from the tomatillos and lime which are both naturally acidic and complement each other wonderfully. Pair that with a teeny tad bit of heat from the Anaheim pepper, aromatics, and cilantro and you have a light, well-balanced, and flavorful sauce. It’s healthy, gluten-free, and vegan to boot.

And it’s not just for enchiladas!! It pairs especially well with pinto beans, chicken, dishes with cream or white cheese, and all sorts of veggies. Here are some other ways you can use it:

  • Smother it on a burrito
  • Use it in a casserole
  • Or in a soup
  • Huevos Rancheros
  • Pour it over scrambled eggs or roasted veggies
  • Slather it on a pork roast

So what do you need to make this enchilada sauce? (+ substitutions)

  • Tomatillos: The base of this sauce.
  • White onion
  • Anaheim pepper
  • Cilantro
  • Vegetable broth or water: Chicken broth would work as well, although it’s not vegan.
  • Lime juice
  • Olive oil
  • Salt
cilantro bunch, tomatillos, Anaheim pepper, and garlic on distressed wood table.

How do you make verde enchilada sauce? (+ tips)

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Arrange the tomatillos, onion, and Anaheim pepper on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for 20 minutes. Flip the Anaheim pepper halfway through, so you get a nice char on both sides.

roasted tomatillos, onions, and Anaheim pepper on a baking sheet shot from above.

Remove from the oven and transfer to a blender. Add the cilantro, broth or water, lime juice, olive oil, and salt. Pulse until smooth.

verde enchilada sauce in blender shot from above

How to store

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to five days. A mason jar works great! If you’re feeling ambitious you could even can it for later.

small jar of verde enchilada sauce with bunch of cilantro and a tomatillo on a distressed wood table
close up of verde enchilada sauce in jar with cilantro and tomatillo in background

If you make this verdé enchilada sauce I’d love your feedback. Please leave a comment and/or a rating below as I greatly value your opinion. Or snap a pic and tag me on Instragram @taoofspiceblog. Love, light and happy cooking ya’ll ♥

verde enchilada sauce in jar on table with bunch of cilantro and a tomatillo shot from above

Verde Enchilada Sauce

Yield: 2 cups
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes

Go ahead and ditch the store bought enchilada sauce. This homemade verde enchilada sauce is super easy to prep, inexpensive, and so so tasty. Naturally gluten-free and vegan.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 pound tomatillos, husked and halved
  • 1/2 medium white onion, peeled and halved
  • 1 Anaheim pepper, de-stemmed 
  • 1/2 cup cilantro
  • 1/4 cup vegetable broth or water
  • 1/2 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt 

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Arrange tomatillos, onion, and Anaheim pepper in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes, flipping Anaheim halfway through.
  3. Remove from oven and transfer to blender.
  4. Add cilantro, broth or water, lime juice, olive oil, and salt. Pulse until smooth.

Storage: Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to five days.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 8 Serving Size: 1/4 cup
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 22Total Fat: 1gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 155mgCarbohydrates: 3gFiber: 1gSugar: 2gProtein: 0g

The nutritional information provided is computer generated. It is only an estimate and intended for informational purposes only. Nutrition details may vary depending on various factors such as origin, freshness of ingredients, etc

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