Smoky Salsa de Orizaba Recipe: A Taste of Authentic Mexican Cuisine

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Embark on a flavor-packed adventure to Mexico with our Salsa de Orizaba recipe! This homemade salsa pays homage to the vibrant Mexican culinary tradition, combining the essence of roasted tomatoes, earthy spices, and a hint of smoky heat. Whether you’re a salsa connoisseur or a newcomer to the world of Mexican cuisine, this recipe is sure to impress your taste buds.

Ingredients You’ll Need: Before we delve into the cooking process, let’s gather all the mouthwatering ingredients you’ll need to create this delectable salsa:

  • 8-10 roma tomatoes, halved and seeds removed
  • 3 to 4 dried guajillo chiles
  • 3 to 4 chipotle chiles
  • 1 medium white onion, quartered
  • 6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 1/2 cup roasted Spanish peanuts
  • 1 tsp dried Mexican oregano
  • 1 tbsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp sea salt, or to taste

Step-by-Step Cooking Instructions: Now that we have all the ingredients ready, let’s dive into the preparation process of this tantalizing salsa. Follow these simple steps to create your own Smoky Orizaba Salsa:

  • Roasting the Vegetables: Place a comal or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Roast the roma tomatoes, white onion, and garlic, turning them occasionally until they blister and develop some charred spots. Once the vegetables are tender and slightly blackened, remove them from the heat and let them cool. Afterward, peel the papery skins off the garlic.
  • Soaking and Preparing the Chiles: While the vegetables are roasting, submerge the dried guajillo and chipotle chiles in a bowl of very hot water. Allow them to soak for approximately 15 minutes until they soften. Once softened, remove the chiles from the soaking liquid, reserving one cup of the liquid for later use.
  • Creating the Peanut-Chile Blend: In a molcajete or mortar and pestle, crush the roasted Spanish peanuts into a coarse texture. Set them aside. In a blender, combine the softened guajillo and chipotle chiles with the crushed peanuts and one cup of the reserved soaking liquid. Blend the mixture until it becomes smooth and creamy.
  • Blending it All Together: Add the roasted vegetable mixture to the blender with the peanut-chile blend. Season the mixture with dried Mexican oregano, ground coriander, black pepper, and sea salt. Blend everything together until the flavors meld into a luscious salsa.

Tips for Customizing Your Salsa de Orizaba:

  • Adjust the heat level: If you prefer a milder salsa, reduce the number of chipotle chiles. Conversely, for a spicier kick, add more chiles.
  • Lime for brightness: Enhance the flavors by adding a splash of fresh lime juice to the salsa.

Serving and Storage Suggestions: This Smoky Orizaba Salsa is incredibly versatile. Enjoy it as a side dish alongside your favorite Mexican meals, use it as a zesty topping for tacos, burritos, or grilled meats, or even as a dipping sauce for tortilla chips. Store any leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator, and it will keep well for up to one week.

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Salsa de Orizaba

Salsa de Orizaba is a delicious Mexican side dish with a rich, smoky flavor. This recipe requires a few essential ingredients like roma tomatoes, guajillo chiles, chipotle chiles, white onion, garlic, Spanish peanuts, and various spices. The process involves roasting the tomatoes, onion, and garlic until they develop a nice char, and at the same time, soaking the dried chiles to soften them. Once the vegetables are roasted, they are simmered with spices, allowing the flavors to meld. Meanwhile, the peanuts are crushed into a coarse texture.
After the vegetables are cooked and cooled, the softened chiles and crushed peanuts are blended with some of the soaking liquid, creating a smooth and creamy mixture. Finally, the roasted vegetable mixture is added to the blender and lightly blended together. The result is a flavorful and slightly spicy Orizaba Salsa that can be enjoyed as a dip or a topping for various dishes. The salsa can be served immediately at room temperature or refrigerated for future use. Enjoy this authentic Mexican salsa that showcases the delicious flavors of roasted vegetables and chiles!
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Resting Time 20 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 3 cups
Calories 251kcal
Author Mike Gonzalez


  • 1 Cast Iron Skillet or a Comal
  • 1 Mixing Bowl for soaking chiles
  • 1 Medium Saucepan
  • 1 Blender
  • 1 Mortar and Pestle or a Molcajete


  • 10 Roma tomatoes cut in half, seeds removed
  • 4 dried guajillo chiles
  • 4 chipotle chiles
  • 1 med white onion quartered
  • 6 cloves garlic unpeeled
  • ½ cup Spanish peanuts roasted
  • 1 tsp oregano dried Mexican
  • 1 tbsp coriander ground
  • ½ tsp black pepper freshly ground
  • 1 tsp Sea salt or to taste


  • On a hot comal or cast-iron skillet, roast the 10 Roma tomatoes, 1 med white onion, and 6 cloves garlic, turning occasionally until they blister and blacken in spots. Once each ingredient softens and develops some char, remove from heat. Allow them to cool, and then peel the papery skins off the garlic.
  • While the vegetables are roasting, submerge the 4 dried guajillo chiles and 4 chipotle chiles in a bowl of very hot water for approximately 15 minutes. Once softened, remove the chiles from the liquid, reserving one cup of the soaking liquid.
  • Bring 1 cup of freshwater to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add the roasted vegetables (tomatoes, onion, garlic), 1 tsp Sea salt, 1 tsp oregano, 1 tbsp coriander, and ½ tsp black pepper. Simmer uncovered for 15 minutes until most of the liquid evaporates. Let it cool.
  • While the tomato mixture cooks, chop or crush the ½ cup Spanish peanuts using a molcajete or a mortar and pestle. Set them aside.
  • In a blender, puree the softened guajillo and chipotle chiles along with the crushed peanuts and one cup of the reserved soaking liquid until smooth and creamy. Then, add the tomato mixture to the blender and pulse just until everything is well blended.
  • Serve the Orizaba Salsa at room temperature or refrigerate it for up to one week.


Feel free to adjust the seasoning according to your taste preferences. You can also add a splash of lime juice for some tanginess if desired. Enjoy this flavorful salsa as a delicious side dish with your favorite Mexican meals!


Calories: 251kcal | Carbohydrates: 27.7g | Protein: 11.8g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 754mg | Potassium: 1252mg | Fiber: 8.7g | Sugar: 13.8g | Calcium: 98mg | Iron: 2mg

With this Smoky Orizaba Salsa recipe, you can now bring the vibrant and authentic flavors of Mexico right into your own kitchen. The combination of roasted vegetables, dried chiles, and aromatic spices creates a salsa that will take your taste buds on a delicious journey. So, gather your ingredients and let the culinary adventure begin! ¡Buen provecho!

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