This homemade Salsa Mexicana is full of flavor and delicious! It requires just a few simple ingredients that are boiled together making it super easy to make.  It’s perfect for chips & salsa, or as a topping for any Mexican dish.

A white vintage bowl filled with mexican salsa garnished with cilantro.

**This post was originally published on Aug 2010. It has been updated to be more helpful.

Mexican Salsa Recipe

This is a typical cooked Mexican Salsa to add on top of pretty much anything and everything. It basically transforms any dish into an absolute delight!

Fresh, healthy and low in calories.

If I had to choose just one salsa to eat in perpetuity, it would be this Salsa Mexicana. It’s an essential condiment for huevos divorciados, quesadillas, tacos, tortilla chips and more!

Why you’ll love this recipe

  • So healthy – It’s packed with good for you veggies, it’s low fat and low calories.
  • So flavorful! -This is the perfect homemade salsa that goes with anything you serve it with.
  • Perfect for meal prep – It lasts in the refrigerator and there are many different ways to using during the week!
A bowl of red salsa placed on top of blue decorative tiles and chips on the side.
The perfect receta de salsa roja

Is salsa healthy?

Most salsas are very healthy as they’re made with real ingredients and don’t contain any preservatives. The veggies and chiles are packed with vitamins and nutrients that are so good for you!

This salsa Mexicana is very healthy and low in calories. There are only 16 calories for 1/2 cup of salsa!

Ingredients

The ingredients are very easy to find in any grocery store: tomatoes, onions, jalapeño peppers, serranos, garlic, & cilantro. I also like to add a tomato bouillon cube for extra flavor but this is totally optional.

We’ll keep it simple by using a food processor or blender to create the perfect chunky or pureed consistency that you prefer.

Fresh raw tomatoes, onions, peeled garlic and jalapeñoes in a metal plate.

Save to Pinterest to make later ? 

How to make Salsa Mexicana

  1. Place all of the ingredients, except the tomatoes, in a 2 quart saucepan. 
  2. Cover with cold water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Lower the heat to a simmer and cook until the chiles and onions begin to soften. About 5 minutes.

3. Add the tomatoes and cook for another 5 minutes or until the tomatoes are soft and their skin cracks. 

  • 4. Transfer the cooked vegetables to the food processor or blender and cool prior to blending. Reserve 1/2 cup of the cooked water. 
  • 5. Add the cilantro to the food processor and puree until you reach the desired consistency. 
  • 6. Transfer to a container or bowl and taste for salt & pepper. Add if necessary according to taste. Refrigerate until ready to use.

How to control the spiciness level

So how do I make a cooked salsa less or more spicy you may ask? The spicy level depends on a few factors so here are a few to consider:

  • The heat comes from the pith and ribs of the pepper which contain capsaicin. This is the active component in peppers that causes the burning sensation. Some chile peppers contain more than others.
  • If you want this salsa less spicy just skip the Serrano pepper and add an extra jalapeño which tends to be somewhat mild. Or just remove the ribs from the serrano pepper to make it medium spicy.
  • Now, if you like it very spicy just add more serrano peppers or a chile güerito.

Important!

Cooked salsa is always spicier while the temperature is hot (right off the stove). However, once it cools down, it won’t be as spicy. In addition, it will lose some of the spice strength the longer it sits in the fridge.

So if your salsa comes out too spicy at first, just give it a few hours or so and it will be just how you like it.

A bowl of red salsa placed on top of blue decorative tiles with a wood spoon. .

Storage Icon Graphic.

How to Store

The first step once you’ve made your salsa is to cool it down. Do not place a hot salsa in the fridge or freezer.

  • Fridge – This salsa will stay good in the fridge for around 5 days. Remember, there aren’t any additives/preservatives and this recipe is 100% fresh. That’s why the shelf life isn’t super long.

What to eat with this salsa

This flavor-packed salsa Mexicana can be used within tons of recipes where you want the tomato flavor to shine through. This is the perfect salsa para tacos but here are a few other suggestions.

A bowl of red salsa placed on top of blue decorative tiles and chips and cilantro on the side.
Pestle and mortar icon graphic.
MORE EASY…

Salsas To Try:

Try any of my delicious salsas…. Always authentic, easy & delicious!

If you enjoyed this recipe I’d love it if you take 5 seconds to rate and review it below on the blog. It’s also super helpful to me and other readers if you share any changes you made to the recipe. Gracias!!!!

Print Recipe:

A white vintage bowl filled with mexican salsa garnished with cilantro.

Salsa Mexicana

Servings 3 cups
Ana Frias
5 from 18 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins
This homemade Salsa Mexicana is full of flavor and delicious! It requires just a few simple ingredients that are boiled together making it super easy to make.  It’s perfect for chips & salsa, or as a topping for any Mexican dish.

Equipment

  • Medium saucepan
  • Food processor or blender
3 cups

Ingredients  

  • 1 Lb Roma Tomatoess About 4 tomatoes
  • 2 Fresh jalapeño peppers
  • 1 Serrano pepper add two more if you like it spicy
  • 2 garlic cloves peeled
  • 1/2 medium white onion
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • Fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1 tomato bullion cube optional
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro

Instructions 

  • Place the all of the ingredients, except the tomatoes, in a 2 quart saucepan.
  • Cover with cold water and bring to a boil over medium heat. Lower the heat to a simmer and cook until the chiles and onions begin to soften. About 5 minutes
  • Add the tomatoes and cook for another 5 minutes or until the tomatoes are soft and their skin cracks.
  • Transfer the cooked vegetables to a plate to cool at room temperature. Reserve 1/2 cup of the water.
  • Place the tomate/chiles mixture and the cilantro in a food processor or blender. Puree until you reach the desired consistency. Note: Add some of the reserved water if the consistency is too dry. Add a little bit at the time but make sure the salsa it's not too watery.
  • Transfer to a container and taste for salt & pepper. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Muy Delish Notes:

The salsa will keep for up to 1 week. 

Add Your Own Private Notes

Whenever you come back to this recipe, you’ll be able to see your notes.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5cups | Calories: 16kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 1g | Sodium: 188mg | Potassium: 56mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 18IU | Vitamin C: 22mg | Calcium: 3mg | Iron: 1mg

The nutritional information and US conversions are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this data. If this is important to you, please verify with your favourite nutrition calculator and/or unit conversion tool.

Fun fact: This Salsa Mexicana was my first recipe ever on this blog!

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Recipe Rating




18 Comments

  1. Could I ask why is the tomatoes and onions and chilli all cooked in water? I’ve seen other recipes that ask for the tomatoes to be roasted together with the onions, and I’m wondering how this matches up to those that use roasted tomatoes. Always love to learn more about dishes and the reason behind why!

    1. Hi Sien! It just cooks faster and then you can use some of the liquid when blending the salsa. I do them both ways actually but when I want my salsa to have a more cooked consistency then I boil it 🙂 I hope this helps!

  2. 5 stars
    I am a Salsa freak.. and love mine HOT! I also add onions and cumin to this base for added flavor and lime juice. I dont measure anytging I just keep adding peppers.cilantro and whatever til its to my liking 😉

  3. Probably a silly question, but do you leave the peppers, tomatoes, onion and garlic whole? Do you cook them whole and out then in the food processor or blender who as well? Or do you chop them at some point?

  4. 5 stars
    PAB: Thanks so much for your review! It’s such an honor that you will be my food critic. I’ll be sure to post the good recipes only lol!

    Stef: Thanks my friend! You’ll get to taste it on Saturday if you can make it down to the house.

  5. 5 stars
    Since I am the lucky beneficiary of my wonderful girlfriend’s blog cooking recipes, I have decided to be a Blog Food Critic (THANKS Dave for the idea!). So what did I think of this salsa? Muy delicioso (I’m also bilingual). I had it on some great fish tacos that Ana made. Unfortunately that recipe and photos did not get posted because a certain photographer refuses to use artificial light and this meal wasn’t ready until it was dark outside! Stay tuned for more food critiques. I think I’ll call my reviews “Fit, Fun & Finicky!”