This fresh tomato salsa or pico de gallo is delicious on just about anything and so easy to make! Use this homemade salsa to top tacos, grilled chicken or fish.
Fresh tomato salsa, or pico de gallo, is wonderful with homegrown summer tomatoes. If I am still waiting for my tomatoes to ripen (we plant several of them in our container garden every year), I use tomatoes from a local farm or greenhouse.
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Here's what you'll need
The recipe is simple: fresh tomatoes, onion, jalapeno, and cilantro with a little lime juice and olive oil.
- Fresh Tomatoes − Any variety of tomato works well in this salsa. I love it with heirloom tomatoes.
- Vidalia Onion − When used in this recipe, the Vidalia onion adds a nice sweetness. Red onions or purple onions would work as well.
- Jalapeno peppers − You can remove the seeds and ribs from the jalapenos, so the salsa is not too hot. But if you like more spice, leave them in or use more jalapeno or a serrano pepper. Or for a mild salso, substitute green bell pepper.
Tip: Be careful and wear gloves when you are chopping the jalapenos. I chopped jalapenos with my bare hands for years and never had a problem. Then last summer, I ended up with burning fingers.
If that ever happens to you, here's a tip from the Kitchn on how to stop the burn.
- Fresh Cilantro − Not everyone is a fan of cilantro, but if you are, you will find it adds a touch of freshness to your salsa.
- Lime − The fresh lime juice not only adds flavor to the fresh tomato salsa but it also adds acid, helping to preserve it.
- Garlic Infused Olive Oil − Slow roasted garlic infused olive oil is a versatile oil and can add tons of delicious flavor to your salsa.
- Salt − You add sea salt to taste. Keep in mind, you don't need to add a lot of salt to this fresh salsa recipe. However, a little goes a long way to amp up the flavor.
How to make fresh tomato salsa
This tomato salsa recipe is best made by taste. I give some measurements in the recipe, but the size and flavor intensity of the ingredients can vary quite a bit. Make sure to taste and adjust as you go and you'll end up with a wonderfully fresh tomato salsa that is good on just about anything.
To make this fresh tomato salsa, combine all the ingredients listed above into a bowl and blend them well. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. You can use more or less of a certain ingredient depending on your preferences.
- If you aren't a fan of cilantro − many people find it to taste soapy − you can substitute the fresh cilantro for some parsley, Mexican oregano, or Thai basil.
- While we prefer heirloom tomatoes for this recipe, you can also use Roma tomatoes. A Roma tomato is less watery than other varieties and is meatier. This adds a good texture and gives your fresh tomato salsa the right consistency.
- When adding salt to your salsa, you can opt for Pink Himalayan salt over regular sea salt. Pink Himalayan salt contains more minerals and has a reduced sodium content compared to regular salt.
- If you don't have lime juice on hand, you can substitute it for the same amount of lemon juice. In most recipes, lemon and lime juice can be used interchangeably.
How to serve it
Salsa is naturally low in carbs. However, most salsas you purchase in the store may have added unnecessary sugars and preservatives that make them higher in carbs.
For this reason, it is best to make your own homemade tomato salsa with fresh ingredients you add yourself.
- You can serve this fresh tomato salsa with keto tacos, on top of a burrito bowl or as a dip with your favorite paleo-friendly plant-based tortilla chips.
- It also makes a delicious addition in a gluten-free and low carb lettuce wrap with some chicken and homemade guacamole. Bibb or iceberg lettuce make great tortilla alternatives for your tacos.
- This fresh tomato salsa is also great over your scrambled eggs in the morning. Use organic eggs cooked in a healthy fat like ghee or olive or coconut oil to keep it keto and paleo-friendly and in line with the Whole 30 diet.
- For more flavor, roast the tomatoes before making this homemade salsa recipe. Fresh tomatoes are good for a bright, fresh flavor. A roasted tomato salsa has a deeper and sweeter flavor.
Can you use canned tomatoes for salsa?
While you can use fire roasted canned tomatoes for salsa, you are forfeiting the fresh ingredients and bright flavors. Regular diced tomatoes can also be used if you don't have fresh ingredients. Make sure to read the labels to ensure there are no added sugars that would not be suitable for a ketogenic diet.
Do you have to peel tomatoes to make this tomato salsa recipe?
No. You don't have to peel the tomatoes when making this tomato salsa recipe. However, this does depend on the type of tomato you use as well. Some tomatoes have a tougher outer skin and should be peeled first. Roma tomatoes or hothouse tomatoes are a couple of your best options to use that do not need to be peeled.
How long is homemade salsa good for?
Homemade salsa can typically keep in the fridge for between 5 and 7 days. When the homemade salsa begins to go bad, you may notice some discoloration, a mushy texture, or a rotten smell.
Can you substitute cherry tomatoes for regular tomatoes?
Yes. You can substitute cherry tomatoes for regular tomatoes if that is all you have on hand. However, keep in mind that cherry tomatoes are juicier than other types.
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- Combine all ingredients in a large bowl until well blended.
- Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.