Green Spaghetti (or Espagueti Verde) is a Mexican pasta dish made with a velvety and creamy non-spicy poblano sauce. Serve as a side dish or as a main entree, but don’t forget to top it with queso fresco and cilantro!
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This Mexican Green Spaghetti tastes just as good as it looks! The light green color of the poblano cream sauce comes from roasted chile poblanos, Mexican crema, and cream cheese. It’s creamy without being too heavy, making it a perfect side or main dish!
What is Mexican Green Spaghetti (Espagueti Verde)?
Mexican Green Spaghetti, or Espagueti Verde, is a pasta dish made with a creamy poblano sauce. The poblanos are roasted and deseeded, giving it a great roasted and slightly smokey flavor without the heat. The blend of Mexican crema and cream cheese adds creaminess, while the cilantro adds a hint of fresh herb flavor.
What You’ll Need
- Pasta: This recipe traditionally uses spaghetti noodles, but you can use other types of long pasta like fettuccine if you prefer.
- Poblano peppers: You’ll need four medium peppers, but you can adjust accordingly based on the size.
- Cream: Mexican Crema is what is traditionally used and what I recommend, but if you can’t find any near you, you can substitute heavy cream or sour cream instead.
- Cream cheese: Some recipes call for cream cheese and others don’t. After testing this recipe both ways, I prefer the one with cream cheese! It adds a touch of extra richness while still being light and delicious.
- Onion and garlic: They’re blended into the sauce for extra flavor.
- Chicken bouillon: One small cube of chicken bouillon is all you need! You can also use chicken stock, but I find using bouillon gives it more flavor.
- Butter: Used for cooking the creamy poblano sauce before mixing it into the pasta. You could use olive oil if you prefer.
- Cilantro: I love topping this pasta with cilantro. If you’re not a fan, you can always use parsley or omit it completely.
- Queso fresco: For garnishing the espagueti verde. It adds a touch of saltiness that is perfect with the creamy sauce. You can also use cotija cheese or omit it if you prefer.
How to Make Espagueti Verde
Cook the spaghetti: Fill a large pot or Dutch oven with water and stir in some kosher salt. Bring it to a boil, add the spaghetti, and cook until it’s al dente, or according to package directions. Make sure to reserve 1 cup of pasta water before draining the spaghetti.
Roast the peppers: While the pasta is cooking, preheat your broiler. Arrange the poblano peppers in a single layer on top of a large baking sheet and broil for 8 to 10 minutes, flipping halfway through, until the skin is blackened and blistered all around.
Sweat the peppers: Loosely cover the baking sheet with aluminum foil or plastic wrap, and let the poblanos steam for 5 minutes. This helps soften the blackened skin, making it easier to peel off. Rub off and discard as much of the charred skin as possible.
Slice and deseed: Once most or all of the charred skin is peeled and discarded, place your poblanos on a cutting board. Slice them open and remove and discard the seeds.
Make the poblano cream sauce: Blend together the roasted poblanos, cream cheese, Mexican crema, onion, garlic, and chicken bouillon on high until completely smooth. This may take several minutes, depending on the power of your blender.
Cook the sauce: Melt some butter in a large pot or dutch oven and pour in the poblano cream sauce. This helps cook down any raw onion or garlic flavor.
Mix in the spaghetti: Add cooked spaghetti to the pot and toss to coat with the sauce. Cook everything for about 1 minute, then taste and season with more salt if needed. If the sauce dries out a little or becomes too thick, mix in a splash of the reserved pasta water.
Garnish and serve: Top the espagueti verde with crumbled queso fresco and chopped cilantro. Serve and enjoy!
Tips & Substitutes
- Peppers: This recipe is not spicy. If you’d like to add some heat, roast a jalapeño or serrano pepper in addition to the poblanos.
- Mexican crema: If you can’t find Mexican crema, use heavy cream or sour cream instead.
- Cream cheese: You can leave out the cream cheese if you prefer, but the sauce won’t be as creamy and thick. I’ve tried making this recipe without it, and I prefer it with cream cheese.
Green spaghetti makes a great side dish and can be served with so many different proteins. Here are a few of my favorites to pair with this espagueti verde:
Storing and Reheating
- Mexican spaghetti can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days in an airtight container.
- To reheat, add a splash of water, broth, or milk, then reheat in the microwave or on the stove on high until heated through.