This boldly flavored Peruvian Green Sauce is a spicy hot sauce made by blending jalapenos, Greek yogurt, lime, garlic, and cilantro. It’s the perfect condiment to serve with grilled chicken, seafood, roasted vegetables, and more!Jump to Recipe
Homemade Peruvian aji verde sauce
One taste of this 5-minute Peruvian Green Sauce and you’ll fall head over heels for the spicy, herbaceous flavors! It’s the best condiment to pair with Peruvian-Style Chicken Drumsticks, Peruvian-Style Grilled Spatchcock Chicken, french fries, seafood, and so much more.
Known as aji verde sauce in Peru, this spicy condiment is easy to make at home using a blender and fresh, pantry-staple ingredients, like Greek yogurt, cilantro, jalapenos, lime juice, and garlic. While the not-so-authentic ingredients are different from the sauce you’d find served with pollo a la brasa in Peru, they do lend similar spicy flavors.
In other words, think of this version as a Peruvian-inspired green sauce with plenty of bold, vibrant, and tangy flavors. You’ll want to serve it with everything!
What is aji verde?
Aji verde (Peruvian green sauce) is a spicy condiment from Peru. While every version tastes a little different, most authentic recipes are made with aji amarillo (yellow chili pepper), huacatay paste (black mint paste), and cilantro. Aji verde is almost always served with pollo a la brasa (Peruvian rotisserie chicken), but it also pairs perfectly with roasted potatoes, fish tacos, and more.
Ingredients you need
Most aji verde recipes are made with a creamy base, spicy peppers, and fresh herbs:
- Greek yogurt or sour cream – Mayonnaise is typically used as the base in aji sauce but Greek yogurt or sour cream can be used as light and tangy alternatives.
- Cilantro -Try not to skip the cilantro. It gives the sauce its bright herbaceous qualities that help balance the other savory and spicy flavors. However, if you can find black mint paste (huacatay paste), use it as a substitute or addition.
- Lime juice – Freshly squeezed is preferred!
- Garlic – Fresh garlic cloves are a must.
- Jalapeno – Chili peppers are non-negotiable, as they’re necessary for the heat in this spicy Peruvian green sauce. Alternatively, make the sauce less spicy by removing the jalapeno seeds and veins ahead of blending. Or, if you can find it, replace the jalapeno pepper with the more authentic aji amarillo. This yellow chili pepper is part of the Peruvian “holy trinity” and has a hot spice level of 30,000 to 50,000 Scoville Heat Units.
- Kosher salt
How to make Peruvian green sauce
First, add all of the ingredients to a food processor or blender. To finish, blend the ingredients into a smooth and creamy sauce. You can also do this in a jar with an immersion blender.
For a thicker sauce, blend the cilantro, garlic, lime juice, and salt first, then stir in the yogurt or sour cream with a spoon.
- On top or alongside grilled or roasted chicken, like Peruvian-Style Chicken Drumsticks and Peruvian-Style Grilled Spatchcock Chicken.
- Drizzled over roasted vegetables, like Roasted Cauliflower Steaks and Crispy Smashed Potatoes.
- Use it as a sauce in Salmon Fish Tacos and Beer Battered Fish Tacos.
- Surround a bowl of the sauce with chopped vegetables on a grazing board.
- Use it as a spicy dipping sauce for french fries, sweet potato fries, and potato wedges.
- Spread it on a juicy chicken burger or a vegetable wrap.
- Thin it out with a little olive oil or lime juice and use it as a salad dressing.
- Use the leftovers as a topping on scrambled eggs.
Frequently asked questions
Aji sauce recipes in Peru are most often made with aji amarillo peppers or jarred aji amarillo paste. I use jalapeno peppers as a closely flavored and spicy alternative. You can also use serrano peppers, which are slightly hotter than jalapenos.
Feel free to blend cotija cheese or parmesan in with the sauce for a cheesy and slightly salty flavor. For an extra spicy green sauce, leave the jalapeno veins and seeds intact, or add an extra half or full pepper.
Storing: Once the sauce is blended, transfer it to an airtight jar or container and keep it in the fridge for up to 1 week.
I don’t recommend freezing the green sauce because dairy loses its creamy consistency and tends to become grainy after it thaws.
Looking for more homemade condiments?
- Creamy Chipotle Sauce
- Garlic Herb and Anchovy Compound Butter
- Easy Keto Homemade Mayonnaise
- Leek and Olive Gremolata Sauce
Did you try this Peruvian Green Sauce? Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below and giving this recipe a rating! Don’t forget to take a picture tag me on Instagram or use #lenaskitchenblog to be featured in my stories! I love seeing what you come up with!
Peruvian Green Sauce
- ¾ cup plain greek yogurt or sour cream
- ½ bunch cilantro
- 2 tablespoons lime juice more to taste
- 1 clove garlic smashed or more to taste
- ½ jalapeno seeded for less heat
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt or more to taste
- Add sour yogurt or cream, cilantro, lime juice, garlic, jalapeno, and salt in a mason jar, pulse with an immersion blender, in a food processor or blender, and pulse until smooth. (For a thicker sauce: add the cilantro, garlic, lime juice, and salt to the jar and blend, then add the yogurt or sour cream and mix with a spoon until desired consistency is reached.)
- Drizzle the sauce on chicken, use as a salad dressing, dip your fries in it.