Mexican green spaghetti or espagueti verde is scrumptious pasta dish made with a creamy roasted poblano pepper sauce. This dish is super easy to make and you could have it on the table in about 30 minutes.
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What is Green Spaghetti
Mexican green spaghetti is one of the lesser know dishes to non-Mexicans, and amigos it’s one you’ve got to try!
This is a creamy poblano sauce pasta dish that’s traditionally served as a side dish. It’s also perfect as a main dish — and since it’s a one pot meal it’s perfect for a busy weeknight.
Other popular holiday spaghetti dishes are espagueti blanco, which is a creamy white sauce pasta, and espagueti rojo which is a spaghetti noodles in a red creamy sauce made with tomatoes..
Creamy Espagueti Verde
This pasta gets it’s green color from the roasted poblano peppers which are the main ingredient in this recipe.
Recipes can vary from the different Mexican regions as well as from person to person.
The only pepper I personally like to add are poblano peppers. But some people also add jalapeño peppers or serrano peppers for extra heat and a spicier green spaghetti sauce.
Some people also add fresh cilantro, spinach, and tomatillos to the sauce. I don’t generally add these, but everyone is free to adjust the ingredients as they like.
The creaminess in Mexican green spaghetti comes from the dairy added.
It can be a mixture of crema or Mexican sour cream, milk, and even cream cheese. Sometimes it’s all three and others it can be any combination of the three.
I’m personally not a huge fan of too much dairy in savory recipes, so I only like to use media crema, or table cream as it’s seems to be called in English.
This is similar to cream or lighter than American heavy cream. I love it and think it works amazing in cream based sauces.
You can find it in Mexican grocery stores or on Amazon and comes in cans like evaporated milk. Unfortunately there is no vegan version of it yet.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
There’s so much to love about this Mexican creamy green spaghetti. Here’s just a few reasons.
- The bright green pasta sauce is made with roasted poblano peppers which give the pasta a slightly smoky flavor.
- The rich sauce is made with Mexican crema and it makes for a decadent sauce that’s perfect over pasta noodles.
- This espagueti verde recipe makes a fantastic meal for special occasions.
- One of the best part of this Mexican pasta recipe is that you can serve it different ways. Serve as a side or main dish.
- Super easy to veganize!
Is This Spaghetti Spicy?
Short and quick answer is no….well maybe not.
So generally speaking poblano chiles are not spicy.
However, now and then you may get some that are.
So in that case your spaghetti may have some heat. But with the media crema added it should tame it, so really don’t worry because chances of too much heat happening are not very high.
If you simply can’t take a risk or tolerate any spiciness whatsoever, then you could use roasted green bell peppers instead of the poblanos.
Now be very aware that the taste is going to be completely different than poblanos. I’ve never personally made green spaghetti with bell peppers so can’t tell you whether I like it or not.
Ingredients Used in Mexican Green Spaghetti
Poblano peppers come from the state of Puebla and are very common in Mexican cuisine. You can get them at just about any grocery store in the US now.
In Mexican stores you’ll see them as chile poblano.
The ingredients for this delicious pasta dish are actually quite simple.
- roasted poblanos
- spaghetti noodles
- vegetable broth
- media crema or crema Mexicana
- olive oil
- salt and black pepper
- cotija cheese for topping (in a pinch feta cheese may be used as a substitute)
Traditionally instead of the vegetable broth I use, chicken bouillon or chicken stock is used. Of course we’re going for a vegetarian version here.
For the vegetable broth I use bouillon powder diluted in water to make the broth.
I also use some pasta water from boiling the pasta. This is to make the creamy green poblano sauce even creamier. The water has starch in it and that’s what helps achieve the creaminess.
Remember what I mentioned above, that some people will use whole milk with a combination of the sour cream and cream cheese.
I don’t do this, my recipe is lighter and healthier. It’s how I’ve always made my poblano cream sauce, and I’ve never had a complain about it’s taste.
Vegan Spaghetti Verde
So for a vegan alternative you could use a homemade crema Mexicana (try my recipe) or if you can find vegan heavy cream use that instead.
My vegan crema is made with almonds but you could also use one made using raw cashews.
The rest of the ingredients, including the spaghetti noodles, are vegan. So it’s quite an easy recipe to veganize.
How to Make Mexican Espagueti Verde
This recipe is so easy any level or experience of cooks can make it.
- Roast Poblano Peppers: We need to roast them to cook them. Follow my guide or you can put them on a baking sheet and put them under the broiler.
- Sweat: Once they have blackened skin place in bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Or place inside a plastic bag. Leave for 10 minutes.
- Cook Spaghetti: Follow the package directions to cook the pasta al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup of the boiling water from the cooked pasta.
- Peel Poblano Peppers: Use the back of a butter knife to peel away the charred skin. Next remove the stem and slice open to deseed.
- Blend: Place peppers in a blender (or food processor) along with the onion, garlic, salt, black pepper, pasta water, vegetable broth and the media crema and blend until completely smooth.
- Cook The Creamy Green Sauce: Over medium heat, add a bit of olive oil to a large pot then once it’s warm pour in the blended poblano sauce. Stir until well combine and simmer until it thickens up. Then mix in the cooked and drained spaghetti. Toss to coat the pasta well.
- Serve: To serve top with crumbled queso cotija or queso fresco or even grated parmesan cheese tastes great. For vegan cotija queso try my recipe.
How to Store & Reheat
You can store any leftovers by allowing them to come to room temperature first. Then place in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator. This pasta will keep fresh for up to 4 days.
Pasta tends to freeze well and this creamy green spaghetti will also freeze well for up to 3 months.
To reheat you can do so in the microwave. I like to add a couple tablespoons of water to the pasta so it doesn’t completely dry out.
You could also reheat on the stove, again adding a splash of water or a little olive oil to the pan before adding the spaghetti. Use tongs to toss and move the pasta around so it heats through evenly.
Spaghetti Verde Recipe
Ok amigos, below is the recipe card for my super easy for espagueti verde. I’m sure you’re absolutely going to love it not just how quick and easy it is to prepare, but also how flavorful this creamy pasta is.
Do let me know in the comments if you’re going to be trying it or if you’ve already tried my recipe.
Mexican Green Spaghetti Recipe (Espagueti Verde)
- one 18oz pack of spaghetti
- 1/2 cup reserved pasta water
- 4 poblano peppers medium size
- 1/2 small white onion quartered into large chunks
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth or 1 teaspoon vegetable bouillon powder mixed with 1/2 cup water
- 1 cup table cream or media crema substitute with Mexican crema if desired
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons olive oil or vegetable oil
- 6 tablespoons cotija cheese or queso fresco or parmesan cheese
- Char the poblano peppers over an open flame on a gas stove or put under the broiler setting in your oven and cook until evenly blackened on all sides. Set aside at least 5 minutes before using the back of a butter knife to peel off all of the charred skin. Remove the stem and deseed then set aside.
- While the poblano peppers are being prepped you can get the spaghetti going, follow the cooking instructions on the package and be sure to save 1/2 cup of the boiling broth. Drain off the remaining water and discard it.
- Place the poblano peppers, onion, garlic cloves, salt, peppers, broth and media crema or sour cream into your blender. Blend until perfectly smooth.
- Heat the olive oil in a large pot and once warm pour in the blended poblano sauce. Stir to combine and simmer until thickened, about 10 to 15 minutes. Toss in the cooked and drained spaghetti, mix until the pasta is well coated with the sauce. Served sprinkled with cotija or queso fresco or parmesan cheese. Enjoy!
Nancy Lopez is a food blogger and author of the cookbook Mexican Tamales Made Meatless. Born in Mexico, raised in the US, and currently living in Southern Mexico, she has followed a meatless diet for almost 10 years. It is her passion and mission to share all she has learned about vegan Mexican cooking and vegetarian Mexican recipes. Mexican Made Meatless is a blog dedicated to preserving the authentic flavors of Mexican cuisine just without the meat. It’s a place to celebrate Mexican culture and all it’s delightfully delicious traditional foods. Read more…