My Favorite Salsa Recipes

Here are my favorite salsa recipes – fresh, frozen and canned.

Enjoy all these recipes but please promise me that you’ll be safe and only can salsa that’s been tried and tested for safety. Check out the canning options below and follow the Do’s and Don’ts of Canning Salsa Safely.

Fresh Salsa Recipes

There’s no doubt about it. My all time favorite salsa is fresh Pico de Gallo.  It’s just so good, especially with fresh tomatoes from the garden. It’s also endlessly customizable so every batch is slightly different. YUM! However, it should never be canned and doesn’t stand up well in the freezer.

Make it. Eat it Enjoy it!

Getty’s Pico de Gallo – Fresh Tomato Salsa

salsa on chip
Fresh salas or pico de gallo. Eat as is, not suitable for canning or freezing.

 Getty’s Fruit & Tomato Salsa

A fresh tomato salsa with a  hint of sweet fruit. Try peaches, mango or pineapple. Try this salsa over BBQ meat, chicken or fish.
Ingredients
6-7 plum tomatoes, seeded & diced
1 cup diced fruit (peaches, mango, pineapple)
1/2 red onion, chopped
1/2 to 2 hot peppers, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
3 Tbsp chopped cilantro or parsley
1 Tbsp lime juice
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
Combine tomatoes, fruit, onion, hot peppers, garlic and cilantro in medium bowl.
Mix in lime juice, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper.
Taste and adjust seasoning.
Let sit for 30 minutes to blend flavors, then enjoy.
Store remaining salsa in fridge for 3-5 days. Bring to room temp before serving and drain any liquid.
Makes: 3-4 cups

Corn & Tomato Salsa or Salad

Sweeten things up with the addition of corn. If you don’t like it on tortilla chips, serve it as a side dish or salad with any BBQ.

corn salsa with chips
Corn salsa also works great as a side dish.

Freezer Salsa

If you have tons of tomatoes, onions and peppers but aren’t in the mood to can salsa – you can freeze salsa too! I’m not gonna lie, the texture is not as great as canned salsa, but this salsa is perfect for all kinds of cooking recipes like the best shredded chicken ever!

If you drain off some of the liquid and add a touch of fresh cilantro, you can serve it with chips as well.

Getty’s Freezer Salsa

freezer salsa
Freezer salsa is cooked down. It’s great for use in recipes but will need to be strained a little before being loaded up on chips.

Canned Salsa

I have not created my own canned salsa recipes. I follow trusted recipes from the National Center for Home Food Preservation, Bernardin and Ball. I do make some modifications according to the Do’s and Don’ts of Canning Salsa Safely. These sites offer a lot of different options, check them out! The following are my top three favorites based on my personal preferences.

Tomato Salsa with Paste Tomatoes – National Center for Home Food Preservation
This recipe works best with paste tomatoes. Slicing tomatoes will create a more liquidy salsa. My go to recipe when I have a lot of tomatoes.
Ingredients
7 (28 cups) quarts peeled, cored, chopped paste tomatoes
4 cups seeded, chopped long green chiles
5 cups chopped onion
½ cup seeded, finely chopped jalapeño peppers
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 cups bottled lemon or lime juice
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
2 tablespoons ground cumin (optional)
3 tablespoons oregano leaves (optional)
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro (optional)
Instructions
Combine all ingredients except cumin, oregano and cilantro in a large saucepot and heat, stirring frequently, until mixture boils. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add spices and simmer for another 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Ladle hot into clean, hot pint jars, leaving ½-inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe rims of jars with a dampened, clean paper towel; apply two-piece metal canning lids. Process in a boiling water canner for 15 minutes (pint jars).
Yield: About 16 to 18 pints (500 ml jars)

Fresh Vegetable Salsa – With Tomato Paste – Bernardin
This salsa is a little thicker and more sauce like thanks to the tomato paste.
Ingredients
7 cups (1750 ml) chopped tomatoes, 7-8 medium-large
2 cups (500 ml) coarsely chopped onions
1 cup (250 ml) coarsely chopped green bell pepper
8 jalapeño peppers, seeded and chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 can (156 ml) tomato paste
3/4 cup (175 ml) white vinegar
1/2 cup (125 ml) chopped cilantro, lightly packed
1/2 tsp (2 ml) ground cumin
Instructions
BLANCH, peel, seed and coarsely chop tomatoes. Measure 7 cups (1750 ml).
COMBINE tomatoes, onions, green pepper, jalapeño pepper, garlic, tomato paste, vinegar, cilantro and cumin in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil; boil gently, stirring occasionally, until salsa reaches desired consistency, about 30 minutes.
LADLE hot salsa into clean, hot pint jars, leaving ½-inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe rims of jars with a dampened, clean cloth; apply two-piece metal canning lids. Process in a boiling water canner for 20 minutes (pint jars).
Yield: 5 pints (500 ml jars)

Tomatillo Salsa – Salsa Verde – Ball Canning
A nice change from tomato salsa. You can use green tomatoes instead of tomatillos.
Ingredients
2 lbs. tomatillos, husks removed, washed, cored and chopped (about 5-1/2 cups)
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped green chilies
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp minced cilantro
2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 cup vinegar
4 Tbsp lime juice
Instructions
PREPARE boiling water canner. Heat jars in simmering water until ready for use. Do not boil.  Wash lids in warm soapy water and set bands aside.
COMBINE all ingredients in a large saucepan.
HEAT to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes.
LADLE hot salsa in to hot jars leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rim. Center hot lid on jar. Apply band and adjust until fit is fingertip tight. Place jar in boiling water canner. Repeat until all jars are filled.
PROCESS jars for 15 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Turn off heat; remove lid, and let jars stand 5 minutes. Remove jars and cool. Check lids for seal after 24 hours. Lid should not flex up and down when center is pressed.
Yield: 2-3 pints (500 ml jars) or 4-5 half pints (250 ml jars)

If you end up making any one of these recipes, I’d love to hear your thoughts.  Leave a comment or take a photo and tag #getgettys so I can see it and like it!

Sign up to get articles by Getty delivered to your inbox. You’ll get recipes, practical tips and great food information like this. Getty is a Professional Home Economist,  speaker and writer putting good food on tables and agendas.  She is the author of Manitoba’s best-selling Prairie Fruit Cookbook, Founder of Fruit Share, a mom and veggie gardener.

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2 Comments

  1. I would love to try the first salsa recipe for canning but want to make a smaller batch and use canned tomatoes. How do I do that.

    1. Hi Barbara
      Canning salsa is a potentially risky endeavor, you have to follow a tested recipe where the acidity level is known to be safe. There are too many low acid ingredients involved in making salsa that the threat of botulism is real. For more on the do’s and don’ts of canning salsa safely read this article: http://www.gettystewart.com/how-to-can-salsa-safely-hot-water-bath-canning/

      If you’re referring to the first of the canning recipes listed in this article you should be able to substitute the fresh tomatoes for canned tomatoes in the National Centre for Home Food Preservation Recipe. To reduce the batch size divide every ingredient by 2 for half the recipe by 3 for one third of the recipe or by 4 for one quarter of the recipe. I would not recommend going smaller than that. Follow the rest of the instructions exactly as is including the processing time – it stays the same regardless of how big the batch size.

      Good luck.

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