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Easy Homemade Salsa (Restaurant-Style)

Homemade salsa is a game-changer. This super easy recipe will have you wondering why you ever purchased store-bought varieties. 

This is an easy restaurant-style salsa that only requires a handful of fresh ingredients. Whether you are hosting a taco night, or just want to munch on some tortilla chips with salsa, you’ll love this fresh salsa recipe.

Fresh homemade salsa recipe served in a bowl garnished with cilantro

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Homemade Salsa Recipe

The fresh tomatoes make the salsa taste vibrant and fresh while adding canned diced tomatoes gives it a great depth of flavor just like the irresistible salsa appetizers that are served at Mexican restaurants.

  • Flavor: The perfect salsa is a little spicy, tangy, and savory. If you prefer a spicy salsa, you can adjust the level of spice to your liking by simply adding more jalapenos. 
  • Texture: A nice, restaurant-quality table salsa is fine in texture. Unlike chunky Pico de Gallo, you want this salsa to come out a bit saucier. This is why using a blender or food processor is an absolute must. This makes it perfect for chip dipping or smothering over a burrito, taco, or some grilled meat. 
  • Time: Talk about quick. All you have to do is toss your ingredients into the food processor and let your salsa marinate for a couple of hours before serving. 
Ingredients for fresh salsa with tomatoes, cilantro, onion, lime, jalapeno

How to Make Fresh Salsa 

In just two simple steps, you’ll have a restaurant-quality salsa fit for any occasion. Follow the simple steps below and you’ll be dipping in no time.

  1. Place ingredients into a food processor or blender. Pulse in two-second bursts, or until all the ingredients are chopped and combined.
  2. Place in the refrigerator to marinate for a couple of hours or overnight. 

Pro Tip: Do not over blend your salsa. If you pulse it too much, it will turn into soup. Just a couple of pulses in a food processor will do the trick. 

How to blend Salsa ingredients in a food processor

Tips for the Best Salsa

Yes, making salsa is simple. But who doesn’t love some good tips to make the process even easier and more tasty? 

  • Mind the spice. Use as many or as few jalapenos as you prefer. Note: Jalapenos with vertical lines on the outside indicate that the peppers have been aging for some time. The more lines, the spicier they are. 
  • Resist over blending. Only blend the salsa just until it’s incorporated. You want a nice, fine texture where you can still see all the colors of the ingredients (see the picture above for reference). 
  • Allow salsa to marinate. Letting your salsa marinate for a few hours in the refrigerator will yield the best flavors. Don’t skip this step! 
  • Pick the right canned tomatoes. Petite diced is the best cut for this recipe. Also, make sure you aren’t picking up a can with any seasoning. If there’s added salt, be mindful when adding any more into the mix. 
Salsa in a bowl

Serve With:

Homemade salsa is so versatile and isn’t just an appetizer. The possibilities are endless. Use the salsa as a topping for Taco Salad, Mexican Stuffed Bell Peppers, or Carne Asada Street Tacos.

Salsa is also great for breakfast or brunch, especially with Breakfast Quesadillas or Breakfast Burritos. This salsa will make your breakfasts more exciting.

salsa served on an appetizer platter with tortilla chips

Storing Fresh Homemade Salsa

  • Refrigerating: Pour your salsa into an airtight container or Mason Jar and pop in the refrigerator for up to a week. The longer the salsa marinates in the refrigerator, the better it tastes. 
  • Freezing: Fresh tomatoes salsa does not freeze well because it has fresh vegetables which can turn mushy and watery when thawed. If you’re looking for a freezer-friendly salsa, try our Roasted Tomato Salsa.

Pro Tip: Airtight storage containers keep food fresh longer and look so organized in your fridge.

Fresh salsa in a storage container

More Salsa Recipes 

These salsa recipes are some of our favorite summer appetizers. Prepare to be wow-ed.

Easy Homemade Salsa Recipe

5 from 3 votes
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
homemade salsa served restaurant style in a bowl

This easy restaurant-style salsa recipe is a game-changer. Fresh homemade salsa is perfect for taco night or munching with tortilla chips.

Author: Natalya Drozhzhin
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $5-$8
Keyword: homemade salsa, salsa recipe
Cuisine: Mexican
Course: Appetizer
Calories: 21 kcal
Servings: 12 servings

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Roma tomatoes halved or quartered
  • 12 oz canned petite diced tomatoes with their juice
  • 1/2 cup white onion chopped
  • 1  jalapeno pepper roughly chopped, seeded
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic roughly chopped
  • 1 Tbsp lime juice from 1/2 fresh lime
  • 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp salt adjust to taste

Instructions

  1. Place all of the ingredients into a food processor or high-speed blender. Pulse in 2 second bursts until all ingredients are chopped and combined. Note: Don’t over blend your salsa. You want a fine texture, but not a puree.

  2. Leave salsa covered and refrigerated for a couple of hours before you are ready to serve. This will bring all the flavors together.

Nutrition Facts
Easy Homemade Salsa Recipe
Amount Per Serving
Calories 21 Calories from Fat 9
% Daily Value*
Fat 1g2%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 1g
Sodium 429mg19%
Potassium 196mg6%
Carbohydrates 5g2%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 3g3%
Protein 1g2%
Vitamin A 446IU9%
Vitamin C 10mg12%
Calcium 19mg2%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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Natalya Drozhzhin

Natalya is a food blogger who founded Momsdish.com to make cooking easier. Growing up on a farm in Ukraine, Natalya was inspired by the amazing dishes that were prepared using simple ingredients. Natalya is most notably known for making cooking approachable for any person.

Read more posts by Natalya

Read comments/reviewsAdd comment/review

  • Annie
    July 17, 2021

    Can I add extra tomatoes instead of the canned? I do not buy canned vegetables (prefer fresh from the garden!)

    Reply

    • Natasha
      July 19, 2021

      HI Annie, this recipe is intended for canned to get that restaurant taste without stewing tomatoes for hours. You might love our Roasted Salsa better which uses all fresh veggies, or our Pico De Gallo.

      Reply

  • Jess S
    June 30, 2021

    Do you think I could get away with using vine tomatoes in place of Roma tomatoes? I had a little grocery order mishap this week and I’m trying to find a good use for too many tomatoes 🤦‍♀️

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      June 30, 2021

      Hi Jess, for salsa, Choose a “meaty” variety like beefsteak or Roma work best for this recipe and salsas in general. If you test it with vine tomatoes, I’d love to know how you like that.

      Reply

  • Duane
    June 17, 2021

    Out of curiosity I am not a big fan of cilantro can I replace with something else?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      June 17, 2021

      Hi Duane, although I haven’t tried that for this salsa, here’s a quick Google search result “There are many herbs you can use in place of cilantro, but the best substitutes for cilantro in salsa are parsley, mint, basil, chives, green onions, dill, or even carrot greens. Each of these ingredients will add something unique to your salsa, and some pair well with specific additional ingredients.” I hope that helps.

      Reply

    • Natasha
      June 17, 2021

      Hi Duane, it’s difficult to replace cilantro since it has such a unique flavor. Parsley is probably the next best thing or chives.

      Reply

  • Sammi Harasymchuk
    June 17, 2021

    Hi,

    Do you have a salsa recipe for canning?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      June 17, 2021

      Hi Sammy, I do not at this time but thank you so much for that suggestion! You can find our Salsa recipes HERE.

      Reply

    • Natasha
      June 17, 2021

      Hi Sammi, I have a Roasted Salsa recipe that is great for freezing but I have not tried canning it.

      Reply

    • Tommy
      June 18, 2021

      I have a recipe that I’ve been using for years. I’ve never tested the pH level, but the flavor is amazing. I’ll be glad to share.

      Reply

  • Becky D
    June 15, 2021

    Just curious, why do you use white onion instead of red? Is there a difference? 🤗

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      June 16, 2021

      Hi Becky, we prefer that but I’m sure red onion work also work!

      Reply

  • Sara Welch
    June 15, 2021

    Enjoyed this with some chips and it does not disappoint! So bold and savory; easily, a new favorite salsa recipe! Delicious!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      June 15, 2021

      Thanks for your good comments and feedback, Sara! Glad you enjoyed this recipe.

      Reply

  • Natalie
    June 15, 2021

    Yum! Salsa is my weakness!! This is super easy & the taste is amazing!

    Reply

  • Stacey Jones
    June 15, 2021

    This is my go-to recipe! So fresh and delicious!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      June 15, 2021

      Hi Stacey, I’m so glad you love this salsa recipe! Thanks for the great review.

      Reply

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