Sopa Seca de Fideo With Tomatillos

Tomatillo salsa verde version of sopa seca de fideo, thin noodles cooked in broth and salsa, garnished with chorizo and goat cheese.

Sopa Seca de Fideo with Tomatillos
Elise Bauer

Are you familiar with sopa seca de fideo?

It's a classic Mexican side dish, made much like Mexican or Spanish rice, but instead of browning rice and cooking it in broth, you brown thin pasta noodles (fideo) and cook them in broth.

"Sopa seca" means "dry soup" which describes the result of noodles absorbing all of the stock.

It is one of my family's favorite dishes of all time. Which is why when my friend Garrett popped by one day with a sopa seca de fideo that he had just made with our mutual friend Peg, a version that used tomatillo sauce instead of a tomatoes, and garnished it with goat cheese and chorizo, I couldn't wait to try it.

So good! Smooth and rich from the homemade stock, tangy from the tomatillos and goat cheese, and spicy from the chorizo niblits scattered over everything, this sopa seca I could eat every day.

Peg and Garrett created this recipe for Garrett's (and co-author Stephanie Stiavetti's) brilliant, cheese-tastic cookbook Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese. Melt is a cheese-lover's dream with creative takes on pasta and cheese pairings of all sorts, including this fabulous sopa seca de fideo with angel hair pasta and goat cheese.

You wouldn't normally think of fideo as a macaroni and cheese dish, but that is exactly Garrett and Stephanie's intention, to broaden our minds and tastes, appreciating the classics while taking on new culinary territory. Bravo!

Sopa Seca de Fideo With Tomatillos

Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 60 mins
Total Time 80 mins
Servings 4 servings

If you want, you can substitute a cup of prepared tomatillo salsa verde for the sauce you make in step one. The original recipe calls for using Hoja Santa cheese, which is goat cheese wrapped in aromatic Hoja Santa leaves. It's a lovely cheese to use if you can find it, otherwise regular goat cheese will do.


  • 3/4 pound tomatillos (about 6 medium-sized), husks removed

  • 1 to 2 serrano chiles

  • 1/4 medium onion

  • 1 clove garlic

  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped, plus extra for garnish

  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided

  • 4 ounces fresh Mexican chorizo, casing removed, crumbled

  • 8 ounces capellini, or angel hair pasta, broken into 1- to 1 1/2-inch pieces

  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

  • Freshly ground black pepper

  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock

  • 4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled

  • 1 avocado, seeded, peeled, diced

  • Crema fresca or sour cream, for garnish


  1. Broil tomatillos, chiles, onion:

    Place the tomatillos, serrano chiles, an quarter onion on a baking sheet lightly greased with olive oil. Broil for about 15 minutes until somewhat charred and blistered. Remove the stems from the serranos.

    green chiles tomatillos and onion slice on baking pan
    Elise Bauer
    roasted tomatillos and chiles for sopa seca de fideo
    Elise Bauer
  2. Make tomatillo sauce:

    Working in batches if necessary, purée the chiles, tomatillos, onion, a clove of garlic, and 2 tablespoons of the chopped cilantro in a blender, making sure not to fill the blender more than halfway. Once blended you should have about a cup of sauce.

    roasted tomatillos and cilantro in blender
    Elise Bauer
    puree roasted tomatillos to make sauce for fideo
    Elise Bauer
  3. Cook the chorizo:

    Heat 2 Tbsp of oil in a large saucepan on medium heat. Add the chorizo and cook 3 to 4 minutes until cooked through and crispy. Use a wooden spoon to crumble up the chorizo as it cooks.

    Use a slotted spoon to remove the chorizo to a paper-towel lined plate, keeping the fat and oil in the pan.

    cook chorizo for sopa seca de fideo
    Elise Bauer
    cook chorizo for sopa seca de fideo until fat is rendered
    Elise Bauer
  4. Brown the dry noodles:

    Place the broken up dry pasta into the pan and increase the heat to medium high. Lightly brown the dry noodles in the chorizo oil. Remove the pasta from the pan and set aside.

    broken noodles in pot for sopa seca de fideo
    Elise Bauer
    brown the broken noodles in the pot in the chorizo fat
    Elise Bauer
  5. Cook the tomatillo sauce:

    Add the remaining 2 Tbsp of oil to the pan and heat on medium high heat. Add the tomatillo sauce and the salt. The sauce should bubble up from the heat of the pan. Cook for about a minute, allowing the sauce to reduce by about a quarter cup. Dragging your spoon through the sauce should leave a trail for a second or two.

    add tomatillo sauce to pot
    Elise Bauer
    cook tomatillo sauce for sopa seca de fideo
    Elise Bauer
  6. Add pasta:

    Add the pasta back to the pan with the tomatillo sauce and cook it until it has absorbed the liquid.

    add pasta to tomatillo sauce in pot
    Elise Bauer
  7. Add stock, simmer and cook:

    Add the chicken stock. Bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Let cook undisturbed for about 15 minutes, or until the pasta is soft and the stock absorbed. The pasta will be past "al dente" but shouldn't be cooked to a mush.

    add stock to pasta and tomatillo sauce in pot
    Elise Bauer
    finish cooking sopa seca de fideo in pot
    Elise Bauer
  8. Serve:

    Place in serving bowls and garnish with crumbled chorizo, goat cheese, avocado, cilantro, and crema fresca or sour cream.

Recipe adapted from and published with permission of authors from Melt: The Art of Macaroni and Cheese.

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
662 Calories
48g Fat
39g Carbs
22g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 4
Amount per serving
Calories 662
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 48g 62%
Saturated Fat 13g 65%
Cholesterol 42mg 14%
Sodium 1233mg 54%
Total Carbohydrate 39g 14%
Dietary Fiber 10g 35%
Total Sugars 7g
Protein 22g
Vitamin C 22mg 108%
Calcium 77mg 6%
Iron 3mg 19%
Potassium 1055mg 22%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.