For many, a Mexican salsa recipe remains a guarded family tradition. For others, it’s a simple act of chopping up whatever is overproducing in the garden. Most people land somewhere in between, with recipes centered on their favorite regional influences.

Mexican Salsa Recipe Bases

Most traditional Mexican salsa recipes carry one key ingredient: fresh, ripe tomatoes. The type of tomato can vary depending on taste, but the key is selecting a less juicy variety or draining and seeding the tomato. Many prefer avoiding this additional, messy step. If you’d rather not have to seed them, a drier Roma or plum tomato works best.

Use tomatillos for green salsa. While these small husk-covered fruits may look like green tomatoes, they come from a completely different plant. You’re in for a surprise if you substitute one for the other. And, remember, you can skip tomatoes altogether. Baja-style fruit salsas made from mangos, peaches or pineapple provide an interesting variety.

Adding Your Heat

The types of peppers selected for your salsa depends on your heat tolerance. The combination of jalapeño and serrano peppers offers the most traditional flavor. Milder salsas focus more on the jalapeños, onions and bell peppers. Hotter salsas add more serrano. Want to really add heat? Chop up a small and colorful habanero. Always remember that seeds add heat, so seed and scour your peppers well if you want to avoid a hot salsa. Also, consider wearing rubber gloves also when preparing peppers. One rub of the eye instantly confirms if you’ve left a trace of peppers on even thoroughly scrubbed hands.

Customize your own Mexican salsa recipe for fun. However, you can always avoid the work and join us at El Caminito for some of our rave-worthy salsas without having to clean the kitchen. Life is too short … grab a chip and dip!