Thursday, July 30, 2015

Homemade Tomato Salsa

Salsa is one of my favorite things to make in the summer.

What can be better than collecting a pan full of colorful vegetables, chopping them, and relishing the wonderful aroma while they cook?

Maybe the best is enjoying salsa all winter?

This recipe came from a friend many years ago and I made many jars of this salsa when I was single. My brothers loved to open up a jar of salsa and serve it with corn chips and sour cream when their friends came over. It is still our favorite tomato salsa recipe.

To peel the tomatoes I place them in a pan of boiling water for a few minutes. The peeling slides right off.

After burning my fingers when cutting up hot peppers one year, I choose to add heat to my salsa by buying dried crushed red pepper. It is so easy to measure it in the pot with no danger to the hands (or eyes.) You can experiment with amount of hot peppers - whether you prefer mild or hot salsa. Maybe you'll want to make several batches with different heat levels. I have found that even the freshness of your crushed hot pepper can make a difference in the heat of your salsa. So add a little and do a taste test.

 Homemade Salsa
1 gallon skinned and diced tomatoes (Paste tomatoes such as Roma are wonderful but any good flavored tomato will work)

3 T. dried crushed red pepper (or desired amount) OR 12 chopped jalapeno peppers (use caution and wear gloves)
3 sweet peppers,diced (red, yellow, or green - color does not matter)
2 medium onions, diced
2 T salt
1/2 cup vinegar
1/4 cup sugar
2 crushed garlic cloves OR 1 tsp garlic powder
1/4 cup fresh cilantro (I substitute fresh parsley - different flavor but same appearance)

Place all ingredients in a large pot. Simmer for 30 to 60 minutes uncovered. Place in jars and water-bath can for ten minutes.
Makes about 8-10 pint.
Hint: If thicker salsa is desired you may add 1/4 cup clear gel with 1/2 cup cold water and add it to the pot half way through the cooking time. Do not boil after adding clear gel.

Disclaimer: Though I've made this recipe for years, it has not been tested by experts for safety. I know that clear gel or other thickener is not usually recommended. Use this recipe at your own risk. 


  1. Need to try your recipe...we love hot sauce! And I like trying different recipes. :-) I usually wear gloves when dealing with hot peppers. I've learned that lesson, too, although not to your extent, it sounds like.

  2. I like the sound of this salsa recipe. The one I have used in the past is more complicated and uses basically the same ingredients. I never thought of using parsley instead of cilantro. We don't care much for it and I grow alot of parsley! What a good idea..thanks! I hope to get a few more peaches soon,I really want to try the peach salsa as well!

    1. Like you, I don't care for the cilantro flavor - and have lots of parsley!

  3. Sounds good, I am a mild salsa girl and hubby a hot salsa guy, he loves to grow his tomatoes, onions and his own hot peppers and cilantro. In the winter when he opens a jar he is talking about what he will plant the next year! I make the corn chips!!

    1. You make your own corn chips? I'd love to hear how you do it.

  4. We love salsa... that is what I live for all summer! Our tomatoes are not turning yet and probably wont for a couple weeks.

    I understand the burning hands with jalapenos! My husband likes them pickled too so I am always messing with them. I bought a pair of those plastic dish washing gloves at walmart the other year and use them only when messing with jalapenos.

  5. Thanks so much for the recipe. I hope to try making it tomorrow.

  6. I meant to tell you for some reason I could not see the pictures. I think the problem though is in my computer-probably needs some kind of update.

    1. Thanks for letting me know. I don't think it is your computer. I made a few changes and hopefully you can see them now.


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