Homemade Green Enchilada Sauce

4.80 from 10 votes

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Quick and easy Homemade Green Enchilada Sauce made with tomatillos, peppers, onion, and cilantro that is packed with flavor and freezes well too.

green enchilada sauce surrounded with peppers and garlic on cutting board.
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I hope this quick and easy Homemade Green Enchilada Sauce makes your dinner just a little easier and as tasty as ever! This is a great sauce to make during summer’s garden harvest of tomatillos. It also freezes well, so make a double batch and keep some in the freezer for a busy night.

My family’s most requested meal using this sauce is One Pan Chicken Enchilada Casserole, but I share more delicious meals to make with this sauce below!

green enchilada sauce topping beef burrito.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • This is a very quick and easy recipe—just blend and simmer!
  • Works well as a sauce for a quick skillet or oven meal or as a condiment for tacos.
  • A healthy sauce with no sugar or additives, and it’s gluten-free, too.

Recipe Ingredients

  • Tomatillos: These are a fun vegetable that might not be known to you. They come in a papery husk and are smooth and limey green on the inside.
  • Anaheim peppers: Mild to lightly spicy peppers that are easy to find and work with. These peppers don’t have much heat; it’s normally just above bell peppers and definitely less than a jalapeno.
  • Cilantro: This fresh herb gives it that classic Mexican flavor.
  • Other herbs and spices: Onion, garlic, jalapenos, and salt give the sauce a lot of flavor.

See the recipe card below for full information on ingredients and quantities.

ingredients for green enchilada sauce set out.

How to Make Green Enchilada Sauce

  1. Blend: Throw all of your ingredients in the blender or food processor and let the appliance do the chopping!
  2. Cook: Add everything you blended up to a large stock pot or Dutch oven and simmer until it thickens.
  3. Use: Use this for your favorite enchilada sauce, as a salsa verde for dipping chips into, or mix it with equal parts sour cream for an easy dip.
how to make enchilada sauce collage of 4 pictures.

Recipe FAQs

How long does enchilada sauce last?

Keep leftovers in a sealed container in the fridge for up to a week or in the freezer for up to 3 months. When tomatillos, peppers, onion, and garlic are in season late in the summer, I always make large batches to freeze for later in the winter.

How do I pick the best tomatillos?

When buying tomatillos, pick ones that have crispy tan husks and no blemishes.

What makes this sauce green?

This enchilada sauce is green because it has a base of tomatillos, Anaheim peppers, and cilantro. Those three things all blended up make this recipe very green. Red enchilada sauce has a red chili base which gives it its color.

green enchilada sauce on burrito.

Expert Tips

  • To freeze, simply let the mixture cool and store it in a freezer-safe container. Mark the lid and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before using.
  • When buying tomatillos, look for a crispy tan husk on the outside and firmness to the touch. The tomatillo size doesn’t matter, as they can mature even at small sizes, but be sure it doesn’t have any obvious blemishes or soft spots.
  • Save a dish by using an immersion blender directly in the pan to blend the ingredients!
ingredients for green enchilada sauce on cutting board.

How to Use Homemade Green Enchilada Sauce

Use this sauce as an addition to chilis or taco-style soups, as a condiment for tacos, or as the sauce base for any of these yummy recipes!

More Sauce Recipes to Consider

Did you try this recipe? Leave a ⭐️ rating below and share it on InstagramFacebook, and Pinterest!

green enchilada sauce surrounded with peppers and garlic on cutting board
4.80 from 10 votes

Easy Homemade Green Enchilada Sauce

Quick and easy green enchilada sauce made with tomatillos, peppers, onion, and cilantro that is packed with flavor and freezes well too.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Servings: 4 cups

Ingredients 

  • 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, roughly chopped
  • 5-6 cloves garlic
  • 2-4 Anaheim peppers, chopped
  • 1-2 jalepenos, seeded
  • 1 1/2 pounds tomatillos, husked and cut in half
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock

Instructions 

  • Place all of the ingredients in the blender and process until smooth. (If the jar of your blender doesn't fit it all, add all of the ingredients except for the chicken or vegetable stock. Add only enough stock to allow the blender to process everything until smooth. Add the rest of the stock to the pan before cooking.)
  • Add the blended mixture to a large pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 30 minutes. If the sauce is thicker than you like, add a little more chicken or vegetable stock.
  • Serve inside burritos or pour it over enchiladas for a smothered styled meal. I also use this as part of my liquid in tortilla soup and chili!
  • Freeze any extras for later use or make a double batch to keep some on hand in the freezer.

Video

Notes

  • If you’d like your enchilada sauce extra smooth, blend it a second time after you cook it to achieve a more velvety texture.
  • Poblano peppers can be substituted for Anaheim in this recipe.
  • To freeze, simply let the mixture cool and store it in a freezer-safe container. Mark the lid and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight before using.
  • Make extra of this sauce in the summer when tomatillos are in season and save for quick weeknight meals during the winter.

Nutrition

Serving: 1 of 4 cups, Calories: 231kcal, Carbohydrates: 25g, Protein: 8g, Fat: 12g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g, Monounsaturated Fat: 7g, Cholesterol: 7mg, Sodium: 1314mg, Potassium: 788mg, Fiber: 5g, Sugar: 13g, Vitamin A: 267IU, Vitamin C: 31mg, Calcium: 41mg, Iron: 2mg
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Recipe Rating




24 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    I made this first using the minimum peppers but found the ideal for us was 1.5 jalapeños and 3 Anaheim’s. It tastes just like our favorite canned brand.I used homegrown tomatillos but had to buy the rest. My garden is not in sync with those crops.

  2. 4 stars
    thanks a lot for the recipe. i was thinking of trying a green sauce the next time i make enchiladas since the butternut squash recipe i tried called for it but she used canned sauce and i’d rather make my own stuff. as a vegetarian i’m always disappointed when recipes call for broth since we never have any and that’s just one more packaged item to buy. finally saw tomatillos at the produce market but i’m still looking for a green enchilada sauce recipe that doesn’t require packaged products.

  3. 5 stars
    Amazing! I am almost speechless…. My family love Mexican food and we decided to give this a try. I did have to tweak this recipe though. Instead of Anaheim peppers, I used a yellow bell pepper. This is the best green enchilada sauce I have ever had! Well done Melissa!!!

    1. Such a great review! Thank you for taking the time to come back and let me know!

  4. Hi
    I live in Australia and can only get tinned tomatillos. Would those be okay to use?
    Miss my Mexican food. From Cali.

    1. Yessss! They work great. Could you grow your own at all? I do that and stick them in the freezer, that works great too. You might want to be mindful of the liquid you are adding though because they’ll have more than a tomatillo that isn’t canned, so add less because it might be thinner than you want.

  5. 4 stars
    I roasted all the vegetables and threw in blender. Added lime juice and oregano. Only 2 cups chicken stock. No need to boil down if roasting. Very good.

    1. You do not have to roast them though it is extra delicious if you do. It’s really up to do you if you want to add that extra step!