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Give your meals a punch of flavor with Italian Salsa Verde! This flavorful herby green sauce has delicious depth of flavor from anchovies & capers. Perfectly paried with fish, veggies, or meat. 

Give your meals a a punch of flavor with Italian Salsa Verde! This flavorful herby green sauce has  delicious depth of flavor from anchovies & capers. Delicious with fish, veggies, or meat.

Italian Salsa Verde is a vibrant, pungent, herbaceous green sauce from Northern Italy, made with capers, parsley, garlic, lemon and anchovies in an olive oil base.

Its flavor is bright and tangy with delicious umami depth from the anchovies and capers.

What you’ll need

ingredients in Italian salsa verde.

Ingredient Notes

  • Olive Oil use a good quality extra virgin olive oil.
  • Anchovies- give depth here. Start conservatively, add more to taste. Vegans can leave it out and add more capers or 1-2 teaspoons of miso paste.
  • Parsley– Traditionally, flat-leaf parsley is used, but feel free to add mint, basil or cilantro.
  • Capers Use capers in saltwater brine or capers packed in salt- either will work.

How to Make Italian Salsa Verde

Use a food processor or immersion blender, or just finely chop everything by hand. Blend the anchovies, garlic and oil first- then add the remaining ingredients.

I like to leave the capers whole- up to you.

Ways to Serve it!

Recipe FaQs

What is the difference between Mexican Salsa Verde and Italian Salsa Verde?

Mexican Salsa Verde is made with tomatillos, cilantro, fresh green chilies and lime. Italian Salsa Verde has an olive oil base with fresh parsley, anchovies, capers, and garlic and lemon.

Can this be mde vegan?

Yes, leave out the anchovies and add a couple of teaspoons of miso paste.

Is pesto the same as this?

Though pesto and Italian salsa verde both originate from Italy, and look similar in appearance, they are different in flavor. Pesto is made with basil and parmesan, while Salsa Verde is made with parsley, anchovies and capers.

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Italian Salsa Verde is punchy, vibrant and herbacious with delicious depth of flavor from anchovies and capers. Delicious on grilled or roasted fish, veggies, or meat. 

Italian Salsa Verde


Italian Salsa Verde is punchy, vibrant and herbaceous with a delicious depth of flavor from anchovies and capers. Tastes great on grilled or roasted fish, veggies, or meat. 


Units Scale


  1. 12 anchovies, optional; see notes
  2. 2 garlic cloves
  3. 1/2 cup olive oil
  4. 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  5. 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  6. 1 cup Italian Parsley- packed, (feel free to sub 1/2 basil, mint or cilantro)
  7. 23 tablespoons capers (and 1 tablespoon caper brine, optional)
  8. 1/4 teaspoon salt or add to taste
  9. 1/4 teaspoon pepper, more to taste
  10. 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes, optional, more to taste


Place anchovies, garlic olive oil, and lemon juice in a food processer, or use an immersion blender, and blend until well combined.  Add lemon zest and fresh parsley and pulse repeatedly until combined but not too smooth. 

Stir in the capers

Add salt, pepper and chili flakes to taste.  You want it to taste slightly salty. 


Vegan: Leave out the anchovies and add 2 teaspoons miso paste, for added depth. 

This will keep up to 5 days in the fridge. 


  • Serving Size: 1 tablespoon
  • Calories: 64
  • Sugar: 0.1 g
  • Sodium: 73 mg
  • Fat: 7.1 g
  • Saturated Fat: 1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 0.7 g
  • Fiber: 0.2 g
  • Protein: 0.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 0.2 mg

Keywords: Italian Salsa Verde, Italian salsa verde recipe, salsa verde italian

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    1. Thanks and yes, I love this tossed with pasta to make a quick pasta salad.:)

    1. Hi, I got these at a specialty store in Bend- they are refrigerated, not tinned. I’ve seen them at upscale grocery stores.

Hi, I'm Sylvia!

Chef and author of the whole-foods recipe blog, Feasting at Home, Sylvia Fountaine is a former restaurant owner and caterer turned full-time food blogger. She currently lives in the Pacific Northwest and shares seasonal, healthy recipes along with tips and tricks from her home kitchen.

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