$3.49 I add to everything I find at Trader Joe's.

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When I moved back home to Minneapolis in 2020, I knew one of the things I would miss about living in the San Francisco Bay Area was the abundance of incredible Mexican food. You don't need more than a few minutes from a great taqueria, which is almost guaranteed to have a cold bar full of handmade salsas and pickled vegetables.

Fortunately, there are a number of excellent Mexican restaurants in the Twin Cities, although they aren't exactly close to home. So when the craving hits for a homemade taco or quesadilla, I turn to this spicy jalapeño sauce from Trader Joe's.

After trying it a few years ago, it quickly became an essential spice that I keep on hand to spice up a variety of dishes, or even liven up my favorite Mexican takeout meal.

Why I Love Trader Joe's Jalapeno Sauce

Made primarily from jalapeños, this (vegan!) green sauce is an essential topping in my house for burrito bowls, quesadillas, tamales, and even scrambled eggs. I use it so much that I always have at least one backup bottle on hand. The flavor is bright, acidic and spicy depending on what you serve it with.

It's a perfect imitation of the spicy salsa verde served at my favorite Bay Area taquerias. The silky smooth texture is creamy, and, even though I eat dairy, this sauce is a great way to add a little richness to a dish without resorting to cheese or sour cream.

Just recipes / Maren Ellingboe King


How do I use this Jalapeño Sauce?

The amazing thing about this sauce is its versatility! Although my husband and I often use it on dishes with Mexican flavors, it works well with many different types of dishes. A favorite application is drizzled over Trader Joe's-inspired burrito bowls, using canned black beans, frozen brown rice, Mexican-style roasted corn, carnitas, and a spicy pickled cabbage salad.

On busy weeknights, it's a delicious topping for a spicy naan pizza with shredded rotisserie chicken, roasted corn, mozzarella and cilantro. For a quick, protein-packed breakfast, I pair it with avocado toast and a scrambled egg. I also love it with chicken shawarma or falafel sandwiches, as it adds a welcome kick. It even makes a nice dipping sauce for tortilla chips, though I like it swirled into a bowl of homemade guacamole.

Jalapeño sauce has a bit of a kick, but even my husband, who isn't usually a fan of spicy food, has found it to be an essential condiment, and it's a great addition to chili vinegar-based hot sauces like Cholula. And vice versa. Tabasco. At $3.49 per bottle, it's worth the shelf space in your refrigerator — and if you're like me, once you've tried it, you'll always need to have some on hand!

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