Chips and salsa is one of those snacks that some people just go crazy for.  Up until I found this recipe, I never really understood that sentiment.  I mean, sure, I’ll eat chips and salsa at a Mexican restaurant when I’m waiting for my meal to arrive, but I rarely have the urge to eat it at home.  I think this is in part due to the fact that salsa encompasses such a huge variety of different types.  Some are chunky with lots of veggies, some are practically as thin as water, some are super spicy, some not so much.  And the kinds they sell at the store – ick.  Then one night we were having dinner at another couple’s house and my friend April made this salsa to go with our dinner.  I knew right then, I HAD to have the recipe – it was my perfect salsa!

The texture is somewhere between chunky and thin.  There are lots of small pieces of veggies suspended in the liquid base.  I think what makes this really fantastic is the fresh and spicy flavor, similar to pico de gallo.  Now I keep a batch in the fridge at all times.  It makes all Mexican food taste way better.  It is also great with chips and I find myself snacking on this almost daily.  I have been told a couple of times that it is very similar to the salsa from On the Border restaurants, but I have never eaten there so I can’t comment on that.  One of the best things about this recipe is how quickly it is thrown together since it utilizes the food processor.  I like it fairly spicy, but the heat can easily be controlled by how much jalapeno you add.

My Favorite Salsa
2 fresh jalapeno peppers, seeded and very coarsely chopped
4 cloves garlic, halved
2 large vine-ripened tomatoes
1 (28 0z.) can diced tomatoes (drained or not, depending on how much liquid you want in your salsa)
2 tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tbsp. cumin
1/2 sweet yellow onion, coarsely chopped
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground cayenne pepper
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
juice of one lime

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the jalapenos and garlic.  Process until finely chopped.  Scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Add all other ingredients to the food processor.  Pulse in very brief pulses until the vegetables have reached the size you desire (it does not take many pulses so don’t overdo it).  Transfer to an airtight container and refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving to allow the flavors to blend.

Source:  adapted from a recipe passed on by my friend April E.

  • I haven’t found a favorite salsa recipe yet, so I’ll have to try this one! The fact that there’s lots of fresh cilantro is winning me over already. :)

  • Erin

    I’m definitely going to try this soon because we love Mexican food and make it all the time at home. I haven’t found a salsa recipe that I love yet, but this looks like it could be it!

  • joelen

    What a great looking salsa recipe!

  • This looks amazing – I love salsa as it the condiment of choice for me!! I will print and try this one for sure!!!

  • Melissa

    I feel the same way that you did about salsa, but I will definitely try this recipe since you have had so much success with it!

  • I made this tonight and my husband and I loved it! Thanks for sharing!

  • Perfect time for this recipe. Right near Superbowl. This would be a refreshing appetizer. I am bookmarking this. Thanks so much!

  • What an adorable picture, Annie. Looks great!

  • Oooooooh I’ve been looking for a good salsa recipe!

  • Sarah

    From a fellow WC Nestie (well, mostly lurker:) and one of those who always checks out your blog, thanks for posting this! I made it last night to have with dinner tonight and had to restrain myself from sitting down at 9 lat night and eating the whole thing. Delicious!

  • thecitygirlcooks

    I’m always tempted to make salsa, but it seems like too much chopping. I love that this is made in the food processor, which I now have! I think I’ll make it for Super Bowl since I’m more interested in the food than the actual game :)

  • Amy M

    I’m so happy you posted a salsa recipe! I’ve really been craving it through my pregnancy and the hotter, the better! :o) I have a little food chopper that will really come in handy for this recipe too!

  • I will have to save this recipe! I’ve been looking for a great salsa recipe.

  • Looks great. I’ve never made salsa with canned tomatoes, but I don’t see why not!

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  • Renae

    I made the salsa today and it is great. I made it in the morning and by evening it was still a great consistency; it did not get watery like most. Next time I will either add another jalapeno or part of a next-step hotter pepper. That’s just us – we love hot, hot hot. This is definitely a keeper. Thanks for posting!

  • I LOVED this recipe! I’ve seen it on your blog many times and finally got around to making it. I think I’m addicted. :)

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  • I LOVE salsa – it is by far, one of my favorite things to eat – but I’ve never actually made my own batch yet! Thanks for the great-looking recipe! I might just have to try it soon!

  • Amber

    This is so yummy and so easy to make. Perfect amount of spiciness. Reminds me of salsa at El Toritos in San Diego. Thank-you so much for sharing!!! :)

  • mimi

    Considering the current news about BPA in tomato cans, do you think this salsa could be made using only fresh tomatoes? Or would there be liquid missing?

  • Annie

    Mimi, I haven’t heard this news regarding canned tomatoes. Of course you can use all fresh tomatoes if you wish, it will just have a different flavor and texture than if you used canned.

  • Annie! I made this salsa just now. It smelled so good once it was done blending that my husband and I couldn’t resist sampling it right away. And it’s AMAZING! Wow. Can’t wait to taste it again later after all the flavors have settled in. We are making your red chile chicken tonight, too!

  • Susan

    Made your salsa recipe–served it over fish–loved the flavors–the only thing I would change is I would use all fresh tomatoes..SO enjoy your blog–am a taste tester for a major company and have forwarded your blog to the other members of our panel and they, too, love following your blog. A big thanks!

  • jaimeleben

    I just finished a batch of this and it is the fridge waiting for dinner tonight. I’m hoping my husband likes it, as he’s been on the hunt for a “perfect salsa” like they used to have at our favorite Mexican restaurant.

  • Andrea

    Just made this salsa and it is great! Just wondering how long it will keep? I love your blog and can’t wait to try more of your recipes.

  • Annie

    Hi Andrea,
    I don’t have an exact time frame, but we have eaten it probably 2 weeks after making it and it has been fine.

  • Jen K.

    Thank you for this recipe! I think you’ve sold me on not purchasing salsa from the store again… WOW!

  • Kat

    Hi Annie,
    I’m planning a nachos night with a friend and have offered to make the salsa but it’s made a bit trickier by the fact that she’s allergic to onions. Do you think this would still work without the onion, or would there be anything that would make a nice substitute?

  • Annie

    Hi Kat,
    I wouldn’t really make this without the onion, it’s a pretty key flavor in this salsa. I don’t know of a good substitute really. I’d probably just look for a different salsa recipe.

  • Thanks for sharing this recipe! It was perfect! Here’s my take on it…..

  • Carina

    This may be a stupid question, but do you remove the skins from the tomatoes? Are they regular “slicing” tomatoes?

  • Annie

    No, if you needed to remove the skins I would indicate that. Just regular vine-ripened tomatoes are what I use.

  • Kathleen

    Could this be canned? It sounds great, I esspecially like the cilantro and lime.

  • Annie

    Canning recipes have to adhere to strict guidelines regarding pH and other parameters I’m not familiar with. I don’t know of all the things that a required for a recipe to be safely canned, but you can’t just can anything. This is not meant to be canned, this is for immediate enjoyment.

  • Shirley

    This is the “it”salsa. We all loved it – I am so glad to have found this recipe and now have to look no further when it’s salsa season. Thanks a ton for posting it and for your amazing blog!

  • Dana

    I tried this as my first salsa for the family. I used many of the items from my garden and it was absolutely amazing!! I actually had company over so I doubled the recipe but only used 3 jalapenos instead of 4 and put a bit more cumin and fresh cilantro and a wee bit less lime….awesome!!! I had several people take some home with them as well. Great job and great recipe….thanks!!!!

  • Heather

    I LOVE this salsa. I made it yesterday to go w/ your chicken fajitas, and am devouring some as I type! It is even better the next day. Keep up the great work!

  • Aimee

    I made this for a group of friends that came over for an impromptu cookout and they LOVED it! It is by far the best salsa I have ever eaten.

  • Jenny

    I made this today, it was my first time ever attempting homemade salsa, and it is SO good!!! It’s a perfect recipe, thank you!! Now I can impress everyone with homemade salsa :) I always give you credit though when they ask where I get my recipes!

  • Yes! This is very good. I’m chompin’ on it now and can’t stop! There just might not be any left for tonight’s company… :)

  • Daisy

    I will never buy store bought salsa again!!! This is incredible! And soooo easy to make!

  • Karlene

    Just made your salsa. Best I’ve had. Instead of jalapeno peppers I used White pepper instead. Thank you and keep up the good work.

  • kati

    LOVED this recipe! Used 4 jalapenos from our garden, drained one 14.5 oz can of tomatoes but used the liquid from the second. This is now our “go to” salsa recipe. Love the amount of cilantro! Thanks for sharing!

  • Nina

    Absolutely delicious!!! I made this today for my Christmas party!! Very very good :) Another win

  • Bridget

    I am not the biggest salsa fan but this was…. Delicious! I will make this again and again! Thank you so much for sharing it!

  • Tammy

    Could I use apple cider vinegar in place of the red wine vinegar?

  • Anonymous

    Please see the FAQ page.

  • I am not a “hot” lover. Do you think the salsa would be just as tasty sans the jalapenos?

  • Anonymous

    This salsa is really not spicy at all. I think you’ll be fine with the jalapenos.

  • Catrinadavis

    Hi. I can’t wait to try. I noticed you “adapted” from your friend. Possible to disclose what you changed? Thanks!

  • annieseats

    It’s been so long I don’t even remember what the original recipe was. I know I made several significant changes.

  • Kristi Bassett

    Just mad this today and loved it! Thanks so much for the great recipe!

  • Karissa Hulse

    This is the best salsa I’ve ever made, and I’ve made a lot. Thank you for sharing!

  • Vik1213

    Do you think I could make this and use fresh tomatoes instead of canned?

  • annieseats


  • I made a huge batch of this salsa yesterday evening for my friends and it was delicious! (Was hoping for some leftovers to keep in the fridge over the week, but my boyfriend emptied the bowl with a spoon when the guests were gone :-))
    In fact, I had an “all-Annie’s -eats” dinner as I made your chicken enchiladas as a main course. They’re among my all time favorite dishes and my friends loved them!

  • Emma

    I made this salsa recently and it was my favorite I’ve ever had! I know I’ll be making this again and again.

  • Cedarriverneighbor

    Can this be canned?

  • annieseats

    This recipe is not intended for canning.

  • You could try leeks – I picked up a bag a few weeks ago, and it said you can substitute ~3 shallots for an onion. very similar flavor. . .

  • Momma Sue

    I just made a batch (only adjusted it down to 1 jalapeno and a 14 oz can of tomatoes – I had several medium, ripe tomatoes to use up) and it’s really good right out of the food processor..I can’t wait to taste it after 2 hours in the refrigerator; it will be Ahhhhmazing!

  • Kristin

    Once made, how long will this keep in the refridgrator?

  • annieseats

    It keeps for quite a while, though the quality decreases after a few days. Please also see the FAQ page for food storage questions. Thanks!

  • Robin Verkade

    Since I cannot can it, would you recommend freezing this salsa recipe?

  • annieseats

    It is really best fresh, so I recommend making it fresh when you are ready to eat it.

  • Melissa Brooker

    I love this salsa! Just wanted to share with other readers who may be in the same situation as me. I can’t tolerate much raw garlic due to an intolerance (makes me so sick) so in place of raw, I roast the garlic and it is delicious!!!