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This restaurant style Homemade Salsa recipe can be made with canned or fresh ingredients and is ready for snacking in only 5 minutes! Serve with some salty tortilla chips or spoon on top of your tacos, burritos, or nachos. This is the perfect addition to all of your favorite Tex Mex meals!

Overhead view of a jar of homemade sals with a tortilla chip being dipped in.


 

Why make this salsa?

  • Quick and easy: this recipe comes together in 5 minutes and can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Fresh or Canned Ingredients: use what you have on hand, grab all of those fresh summer tomatoes, or if needed you can use your canned tomatoes. This allows you to make great quality salsa all year long. Personally I love the texture that comes from using canned tomatoes, but some people prefer all fresh, you can also do a combination of the two.
  • Control the heat: you are in control of the spiciness of this recipe. If you would prefer you can leave the membranes in the jalapeno, you could add more jalapeno, or you could even toss in a Serrano for a little extra heat.
  • Sweetness: using a little touch of honey in this recipe cuts through the acidity of the tomatoes and gives you a nice smooth taste.

Ingredients:

Ingredients needed to make salsa laid out on the counter.

Notes on some ingredients:

  • Tomatoes: use one can of diced tomatoes and one can of diced tomatoes with green chiles if needed. Or grab one pound of fresh tomatoes.
  • Chile: this recipe is made using jalapeno, removing the seeds and membranes makes for a nice mild salsa that pairs nicely with meals and is great for serving with tortilla chips. If you personally want more heat add in extra jalapeno or even a Serrano pepper.
  • Honey: adding this cuts through the acidity of the tomatoes and gives a smooth flavoring.

Serene’s Tip: For extra flavor, give the tomatoes a quick roast in the oven before blending.

How to make (Step by Step)

How to make salsa showing ingredients in a processor and then blended together.
  • Step 1: Add ingredients to food processor and pulse the ingredients together.
  • Step 2: Taste and adjust salt and lime juice as necessary.

Expert Tips:

  • The type of tomatoes you use matter! For this particular salsa I love using canned tomatoes. It’s quick and easy. If you’re using fresh I would go for a Roma tomato or a San Marzano. If using fresh tomatoes I would recommend roasting them in the oven first, or even boiling them on the stovetop for about 10 minutes.
  • When adding the ingredients to the processor add the garlic, jalapeño and onion first. This ensures that it gets chopped up nice and fine. No big chunks of garlic left to disrupt your enjoyment.
  • Start with a small amount of lime juice. Lime can be overpowering. So start small and add more to taste if needed. If you add too much there’s no going back.
  • Adjust to taste. One of the best things about making your own salsa is that you can customize it and make it more to taste. More salt, more jalapeño for more spice, more honey, or more lime juice.
  • Pulse the Processor: we want our ingredients to be chopped up but still be chunky, don’t overblend.
Jar of fresh homemade salsa.

F.A.Q’s:

What is the difference between salsa and Pico de Gallo?

Pico de Gallo is not made in a food processor or blender, it is made by dicing up the ingredients and has a chunkier texture. Here is a recipe for Pico de Gallo.

Can this be made in a blender instead of a processor?

Yes. If all you have is a blender you can use it, just be careful to not overblend.

How do I can this salsa?

This recipe can be used for canning, a small amount of vinegar will need to be added to help with preserving and a water bath method should be used.

More Salsa Recipes:

Easy Homemade Salsa

5 from 166 votes
Prep: 10 minutes
Total: 10 minutes
Servings: 3 cups
Author: Serene
Homemade restaurant style salsa! So easy to make and tastes just like it's from your favorite restaurant! Perfect for dipping chips into or spreading all over some tacos.
Overhead view of a jar of homemade sals with a tortilla chip being dipped in.

Ingredients  

  • 1 (14.5 oz can) diced tomatoes OR 1 pound fresh tomatoes
  • 1 (10 oz can) diced tomatoes with green chiles
  • 3 cloves garlic crushed
  • ½ onion roughly chopped
  • 1 jalapeno deseeded and membranes removed
  • ½ tbsp honey
  • ½ cup cilantro
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • Juice from 1/2 lime

Instructions 

  • Prepare Ingredients: Add the onion, jalapeno, and garlic to the food processor and pulse until chopped up.
  • Pulse: Add in the tomatoes and continue to pulse until the tomatoes break down and release juices.
  • Season: Add in honey, salt, 1/2 cup cilantro leaves, and juice of 1/2 lime (start slow with the lime as it can overpower, you can taste and add more if desired)
  • Blend: Pulse in the processor to desired consistency. Chunky or smooth. Taste and adjust salt, honey, or lime juice as needed.

Video

Notes

  • Tomatoes: recipe can be made with fresh or canned tomatoes, or use a mixture of the two. The 1 pound of fresh tomatoes will replace using both the cans of diced tomatoes. 
  • Chile: this recipe is made using jalapeno, removing the seeds and membranes makes for a nice mild salsa. If you personally want more heat add in extra jalapeno or even a Serrano pepper.
  • Honey: adding this cuts through the acidity of the tomatoes and gives a smooth flavoring.
  • Salt: taste and adjust as needed in this recipe. 
  • Storage: Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. 
  • Salsa too thin? Simply strain out some of the liquid.

Nutrition

Serving: 11/3 cup | Calories: 25kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 197mg | Potassium: 67mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 232IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 13mg | Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Like this? Leave a comment below!

Recipe first posted in 2014. Updated on February 20, 2018. And again June 11, 2021 with new images and information.

Photography done by the talented @KJandCompany.co


Welcome to my kitchen!

Welcome to the House of Yumm!! My name is Serene. I’m the food photographer, recipe developer, and official taste tester around these parts.

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5 from 166 votes (145 ratings without comment)

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148 Comments

  1. What an excellent idea to pulse the onion, garlic, and jalapeno first! Adding the lime in carefully keeps from getting too much, both ideas are solid.

  2. I used your recipe as a guide, then I went off the rails and added cumin, Serrano peppers, green bell peppers and smoke seasoning. I’ll let you know how it turned out as soon as my tough comes back to life. LOL It turned out great. Thanks for the starter ingredients, they were spot on.

  3. Awesome!! I was able to recreate one of my favorite brands of salsa almost exactly. It is made locally where I used to live and I miss it so much! It’s not chunky and I can taste the garlic but it’s not overpowering. I used previously-roasted and frozen garlic. And while I used a whole jalapeno (seeds and membranes removed), I also added a tablespoon of pureed chipotle in adobo sauce.

    Best of all? This is “Daddy-Approved”! He’s 84 and eats three scrambled eggs topped with salsa for supper every night. Like me, he liked the taste of garlic without it being too much. Having lived in Texas for over 30 years and in South Texas for two of those years, I was constantly trying to make the perfect salsa. Until now. This one is IT!!! Thank you SO very much!

  4. Can’t wait to try this recipe. I hate chili powder in my salsa, so I’m happy to find your recipe. Thanks!

  5. I make this almost every weekend and can’t emphasize how many compliments I get everywhere I bring it! It’s easy with the canned tomatoes and full of flavor. I often double up on jalapenos for added spice or even add some chilis in adobo sauce for a smoky taste, but the original is definitely a crowd pleaser. This is like the gateway drug of salsas – once you master this, you’ll want to continue making all different kinds! Thank you so much!