Creamy Serrano Salsa


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes

    ½ cup

Appears in

Oaxaca: Home Cooking from the Heart of Mexico


By Bricia Lopez and Javier Cabral

Published 2019

  • About

This is my favorite bar snack salsa. When I think of this salsa, I think of being in my favorite centro botanero in Oaxaca, an old-school bar named La Giralda. There, when you order your beer or michelada, they bring you taquitos and some of this salsa to dip them in, and it’s absolutely perfect with a cold beer or michelada to add to the heat. Despite its name, it has nothing to do with avocado; it gets its creaminess from the oil that is used to fry the chiles. When you blend it, the oil emulsifies the chiles and it looks like a taqueria guacamole. But don’t be deceived, it is some powerful stuff.


  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 10 serrano chiles (100 g), stems removed
  • ¼ cup (25 g) chopped white onion
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • Sea salt


Heat the oil in a medium pan over high heat. Once pan is hot, add the chiles and fry them for about 10 minutes. Make sure to move them around so that all sides of all the chiles get blistered and brown.

Once the chiles are brown on all sides and their color starts to change to a lighter green, transfer them to a blender and use a spatula to scrape all of the oil in there as well. Add the onion, garlic, 3 tablespoons of water, and the lime juice and blend until smooth. Salt to taste.