Chipotle – Roasted Tomatillo Salsa

Salsa Chipotle
Recipe from Season 7, Mexico—One Plate at a Time
Servings: 2cups


  • 1pound (6 to 8 medium)tomatillos, husked and rinsed
  • 1/3 to 1/2ounce (3 to 5) dried red chipotle chiles (aka moritas), stemmed
  • 1small white onion, sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • Salt
  • About 1teaspoon sugar (optional)


Roast the tomatillos on a rimmed baking sheet about 4 inches below a very hot broiler until soft and blackened in spots, about 5 minutes per side. Cool, then scrape into a blender jar.

Meanwhile, heat a small (6-inch) ungreased skillet over medium, toast the chipotle, stirring until very aromatic, about a minute. Scoop into a small bowl, cover with hot tap water and soak for about 30 minutes, stirring from time to time to ensure even rehydration.

Turn the oven down to 425 degrees. Spread the onion and garlic on another baking sheet, slide into the oven and roast for about 15 minutes, stirring every few minutes until the onions are golden—they’ll look a little wilted with a touch of char on some of the edges. The garlic should feel soft and be browned in spots. Cool.

Drain the chiles and scrape them into the blender jar along with the tomatillos and 3/4 cup water. Pick out the garlic from the onions and add it to the blender. (If all this is too much for your blender, blend in 2 batches.) Blend until nearly smooth. Roughly chop the onion, add it to the blender and pulse a few times until you’ve got as chunky (or smooth) a salsa as you like. Stir in enough additional water to give the salsa an easily spoonable consistency. Taste and season with salt, usually about 1 teaspoon, and the optional sugar.



  1. Rick, 5 star salsa! Bought this salsa ready made in the grocery store, can’t wait to try to make it myself! The best salsa I’ve had yet!

  2. Love your show can’t wait till you come on your daughter reminds me of my grandkids in the kitchen with me cooking great . Food your wife is lovely I hope I can come to Chicago and eat at your restaurant to enjoy the real deal keep u ppl the great work you do and love cooking God bless

  3. Have had this salsa many times at the airport location and lots of different varieties of this type salsa. Love it! Tried making it last week and came out more tart and less smokey. Thoughts? Maybe I didn’t roast my stuff long enough? Anyway, bought a jar of it and will try again when I get back home from traveling this week!

    1. Hi Michael,
      well now that you have made it you can experiment. Raw tomatillos will make the salsa tangy, roasting them in further (blackened is okay!) will make them sweeter. If you want more of a smoky flavor then use more chipotle. Enjoy!

      1. If you don’t want to roast the tomatillos, you can also boil them with onion and a garlic clove and then put everything in the blender including the chipotle and you get a very nice salsa too. Both roasting or boiling eliminates the tangy flavor and the acidity from the tomatillos.

  4. Dear Rick, just one comment. Chipotles are not also known as moritas. The chile morita’s flavour is completely different from that of the chipotle. Chipotle’s is smoky and kind of sweet that’s why it can be combined with tomatillo or red tomato and morita’s is a bit acid and it is easily combined with other chiles such as ancho, cascabel or guajillo.
    Have a nice Sunday!
    Best Regards,

  5. Love your show and recipes-you make it look so easy and explain well. Just started discovering your jarred salsas in grocery stores. Found pumpkin chipotle salsa at Cost Plus, just enough pumpkin with the smokey taste. Love it and going to stock up since seems to be out for fall season starting. Love to make your recipes also.

  6. Sounds Great, Looks Great, and Tastes Great! This is the most mind-blowing salsa I have ever tried. Great Job!

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