Vegetarian Green Tomatillo and Poblano Chili

The best American name for this vegetable would probably be “Mexican green tomato”, but they actually taste nothing like regular tomatoes, In fact, the tomatillo is not a tomato at all. The tomatillo has a tart, lemony flavor that is enhance when cooked (especially roasted) and is an excellent base for salsas. While salsa (salsa verde) is the most popular way to enjoy tomatillo, they can be used in other ways. Tomatillos contain high amounts of vitamin A&C. Tomatillos are our #2 sales item!

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6 poblano peppers
1 pound tomatillos, husks removed
2 tablespoons olive oil
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 large white onion, halved and sliced
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 bouillon cubes
3/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 lime
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon dried epazote or oregano
1/2 cup hulled pumpkin seeds
1 (35-ounce) can hominy*, rinsed and drained
2 (15-ounce) cans white beans, rinsed and drained
Queso fresco, for garnishing
Radishes, for garnishing


Serves 6.

Preheat broiler and line broiler tray with aluminum foil. Place chiles and tomatillos on tray, broil until blistered, about 20 minutes turning halfway through. Remove from broiler and place peppers in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Set tomatillos aside.

In a large saucepot over medium heat, heat olive oil. Add garlic, onions, bay leaf, cumin and bouillon cubes. Cook and stir until onions are translucent, about 10 minutes. Add 4 cups of water bring to a boil. Discard bay leaf and transfer liquid and onions to a blender. Puree until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and reserve broth.

To blender, add blistered tomatillos, 2 of the poblano peppers (stemmed and seeded), cilantro, lime juice and salt. Puree until smooth. Transfer to saucepot over medium heat. Cook stirring occasionally until thick, about 12 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a dry skillet over medium heat, add pumpkin seeds. Cook and stir until fragrant and just beginning to brown. Remove to small food processor or coffee grinder and pulse until seeds are ground to a powder. Add epazote and ground pumpkin seeds to tomatillo mixture and stir. The pumpkin seeds will thicken the broth considerably.

Add reserved broth to mixture 1 cup at a time making sure mixture comes to a boil after each addition. Add hominy and beans. Reduce to a simmer.

Meanwhile, peel, seed and coarsely chop remaining peppers. Add peppers to mixture.

To serve, ladle into bowls and garnish with crumbled cheese and sliced radishes.