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Jumil Salsa
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The jumil, xomitl or xotlinilli is an insect that is found in large quantities in the humid regions of various states of the Republic, mainly in Guerrero and Morelos. It is a kind of mount bug, they measure less than 1 centimeter and they have a characteristic cinnamon flavor with mint touches and with certain freshness.

In the Prehispanic times they were collected for the dead feast. The Mexicas did a pilgrimage to the Huixteco hill (in Taxco, Guerrero) until they arrived to the temple dedicated to the jumil. Currently the pilgrimage continues to be celebrated the first monday after the day of the dead.

Although it is a very exotic salsa because is prepared with insects, its taste is not bad. In fact tomatillo and chili are used to give a fresh, acidic and spicy touch to the jumiles’ flavor . It is also very important to highlight that the jumiles won’t be eaten alive because they die in the preparation – although there are some Mexican recipes that are enjoyed with live jumiles.

– The jumiles don’t contain protein, calcium or another mineral; only their high content of
iodine is attributed.

Although you don’t believe it there are people that enjoy this salsa, it is mainly used mixed with
guacamole and then each diner eats it with tortillas. This salsa can also be used in beef or pork tacos and those are the only applications that we know.

About the Recipe

  • This recipe is very challenging because you will work with the jumiles alive.
  • The jumiles are only sold alive, they don’t exist neither canned nor roasted. Therefore get ready to work with an ingredient that moves.
  • The salsa is spicy because 8 serrano peppers are used, if you want to attenuate the hotness just use 5.
  • In about 10 minutes the salsa will be ready.
  • The recipe is for 2 cups.


  • 1/2 cup of Jumiles (2.6 oz)
  • 10 Tomatillos (17.6 oz)
  • 8 Serrano Peppers (3.3 oz)
  • 3/4 of a tablespoon of Salt

  • Cookware

  • 1 Saucepan
  • 1 Griddle
  • 1 Blender
  • 1 Turner
  • 1 Strainer

  • Directions

    Cook the Jumiles

    1. Put in a strainer 1/2 cup of jumiles and rinse them.
    2. Transfer from the strainer to a saucepan the jumiles that were rinsed.
    3. Also add in the saucepan:
    • The enough Water to cover the jumiles.
    • 1/2 tablespoon of Salt.

    1. Bring the saucepan water to a boil over high heat.
    2. Leave the jumiles cooking in the boiling water for about 3 minutes, until they soften.

    With this cooking all the jumiles are going to die.

    1. Transfer from the saucepan to the strainer the jumiles that were cooked and remove the water excess.

    Roast and Blend

    1. Transfer from the strainer to a griddle the jumiles that were cooked.
    2. Roast over medium heat the jumiles that were put on the griddle for approximately 1 minute 30 seconds, until they are lightly roasted; stir regularly.
    3. Transfer from the griddle to a blender the jumiles that were roasted.
    4. Also add in the blender:
    • 10 Tomatillos.
    • 8 Serrano Peppers.
    • 1/4 tablespoon of Salt.

    1. Blend very well the ingredients.

    Traditional Flavors

    Recommendation: This salsa should be consumed within 48 hours in order to enjoy all its aroma and flavor.

    Variation: Another very exotic salsa that is prepared with escamoles.

    Did you like the Jumiles?

    Other Mexican Recipes

    Pineapple Creamy Dressing
    Puebla Style Mole
    Charro Beans
    Horchata Water

    Know more recipes that are prepared with insects.

    In this recipe a good and large strainer is needed like the OXO, so you can work well with the jumiles.

    Serve the salsa in molcajete so it looks very appetizing.