Get your tortilla chips ready! Fresh Roma tomatoes, cilantro & lime create an easy, bright, restaurant-style salsa that you can enjoy any time. This simple homemade salsa recipe also makes a perfect topping for your favorite enchiladas, tacos or Tex Mex casseroles!
The Engineer and I first fell in love with fresh salsa at a little dive we happened upon in Taos, New Mexico. If you’ve been following long, you know that he loves to drag me into every hole in the wall place he can find. For him, the more hole in the wall the better. And he’s not often wrong. His love for local flavor has been the source for most of our favorite recipes/dishes!
RELATED RECIPES: Strawberry Avocado Salsa, Green Chile Corn Salsa Dip
And this fresh tomato salsa recipe with cilantro and lime is the result of one those delicious local discoveries. There are no canned tomatoes here! Only gorgeously bright and fresh fruit and veggies. There have been years that we’ve planted a garden just so that we can make this salsa. It’s just that good!
What You Need To Make Fresh Cilantro Lime Salsa
- Roma tomatoes
- yellow onion
- chili powder
Tips For Making The Best Salsa
- Roma tomatoes, those funny, oval shaped tomatoes at your local grocery store or farmer’s market, make the best salsa. The reason is that Romas have more meat and fewer seed cavities than other types of tomatoes. Meatier tomatoes create a better textured, less watery salsa. Cherry or grape tomatoes work great too!
- Because this recipe uses only fresh tomatoes and not canned ones, I don’t use a food processor to chop everything. Or if I do, I only do a couple of quick pulses with the peppers, onion and cilantro ON THE BOTTOM. A food processor can easily break a fresh tomato down too much and create a watery salsa, of you’re not careful.
- Instead of a food processor, I might use my pastry cutter to blend up my diced tomatoes, onions and peppers after adding them to my salsa if I think the salsa is too chunky. Using a pastry cutter gives me more control of the texture.
- The sugar in this recipe cuts the bright acidity of the tomatoes (especially store bought tomatoes), vinegar and lime. And though that acidity is my favorite part, it does need a bit of balancing. However, as summer heats up and the tomatoes get sweeter, you might find that you need less sugar.
- The ease and success of this recipe depends 100% on a nicely sharp knife.
How To Make Your Salsa Hotter (or Milder)
- The membrane that holds the seeds of a jalapeno or other hot pepper is where the heat of the pepper comes from. How much membrane you leave in the pepper will determine the heat of your salsa.
- Usually, shorter peppers are hotter than longer ones.
- Canned diced green chiles can be substituted for fresh jalapenos to make a 100% mild salsa. Just drain the chiles before adding them to your salsa.
What To Serve With Fresh Salsa
- Green Chile Chicken Enchilada Casserole
- Layered Beef Enchilada Casserole
- Easy Taco Hand Pies
- Pineapple Cilantro Lime Spritzers
- Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas
- Overnight Green Chile Breakfast Strata
Other Salsa & Mexcian Dip Recipes You’ll Love
- Green Chile Corn Salsa Dip
- Fresh Avocado Strawberry Salsa
- Tex Mex Guacamole
- Classic 7 Layer Mexican Dip
- Best Cheesy Beef Enchilada Dip
It’s no secret we really love this recipe right along with you readers! It truly is one of our top dip recipes. And it’s no wonder… This easy salsa with cilantro is off the charts fresh and delicious. Share a few laughs and more than a few tortilla chips with those you love plus a new friend or two when you make this special recipe.
IF YOU MAKE THIS RECIPE, BE SURE TO LET ME KNOW!
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Fresh Salsa with Cilantro & Lime
- 6 Roma tomatoes
- 1/2 medium yellow or sweet onion
- 1/4 C finely chopped cilantro
- 2 jalapenos
- 1/4 C vinegar, skinny
- 2-3 tsp salt
- 2 tsp sugar
- 1 tsp minced garlic
- 1/4 tsp chili powder
- 1/4-1/2 lime
- Finely dice tomatoes & onion and place in medium glass mixing bowl. Add chopped cilantro.
- Slice jalapenos in half to remove the seeds and the membrane than that holds them. Finely dice peppers and add to tomatoes and onion. (Note: The membrane is where the heat of the pepper comes from. How much of the membrane you leave in the pepper will determine the heat of your salsa. You may want to wear gloves while you work with the jalapenos. If not, wash hands thoroughly with dish washing liquid afterwards and do not touch face.)
- Add vinegar, garlic, chili powder and 2 tsp of salt and sugar. Toss well. Taste to determine if another tsp of salt and/or sugar is needed.
- Squeeze lime over salsa. Toss once more. Cover and refrigerate or serve immediately with tortilla chips or with any Tex Mex dish.
Can this Salsa be frozen?
Hi, Karen! I have never frozen this salsa. This recipe is all about enjoying fresh tomatoes and veggies and their wonderful tastes in the moment.
Loved the flavor. Was easy and delicious.
Hi, Julie! Thank you so much! I am just tickled that you enjoyed this recipe. It is definitely one of our favorites!
Do I need to peel the tomatoes for fresh salsa like this?
Hi, Rachelle! You shouldn’t need to peel the tomatoes. However, if you are using garden tomatoes that have a number of splits or wasp stings, you might want to, but otherwise, no peeling!
Thank you! I made it this afternoon and it is really good! Next time I might even add black beans and corn. I also love how it is easy to change the recipe so I could make it for a crowd.
That does sound good… and some fresh corn! Awesome! Yes, easy for a group, easy to add, take away or substitute ingredients to fit the moment or someone’s preferences. Love it! I am just so tickled you liked the recipe!
Excited to try this! How much salsa does this recipe it make? Trying to decide if I should double it.
This recipe makes about 3- 3.5 C. It usually feeds my group of 4, and we’re pretty big chips & salsa eaters!
OMG!! This is so delicious! I roasted my tomato and used Anaheim peppers that I roasted.. turned out fantastic! Thanks for sharing! Have you ever canned this recipe?
Hi, Doug! That’s sounds fantastic! Love roasted tomatoes and peppers, especially Anaheims! No, I have never canned this recipe. But if you do, please let me know!
What does vinegar, “skinny” mean?
Hi, Donna! Just below or at the bottom edge of the 1/4 cup mark on your measuring cup. Enjoy!
Soooo good! I added a bit of Siracha for a slight kick. My husband loved it !
Sounds delicious! We are huge Siracha fans! So glad you liked this salsa. <3
This tastes amazing.
Hi, Steve! I am so glad that you like it! Fresh salsa is our favorite. I think I could eat it everyday!
Can this recipe be used for canning?
Hi, Lorraine! Even though this recipe has plenty of acid, it can’t be used for canning. The vinegar and lime will allow the salsa to stay fresh for several days.
I added red beans, corn and cumin. I also used canned stewed tomatoes. Fantastic!!
I just made this salsa and it is bomb!! I did put in some finely chopped celery and and added 2 cans of diced green Chili’s. I blended half of the salsa and added the rest of the chunky salsa. It is perfect texture not watery at all. Thank you for the receipt, I will be making it again for sure. 5 stars from me😋😋
Hi, Lisa! Love it when cooks make a recipe their own. Fabulous! I’m just tickled you loved this salsa!
Followed recipe to the t except lime. We didn’t have one and I wasn’t running to town just for that. But was still awesome thank you for sharing
Thanks, David! I am so glad y’all loved this salsa and decided to go ahead and make it anyway without the lime! I think it’s good either way too. I have even made it with a lemon as a substitute before! Nothing beats some good chips and salsa!
Can I freeze this recipe?
Hi, Brenda! I have never frozen this salsa, but you are sure welcome to try it. This recipe is all about enjoying fresh tomatoes and veggies and their wonderful tastes in the moment.
do you use white vinegar or apple cider vinegar?
Hi, Gwen! It’s white vinegar for this recipe! Enjoy!
Made this today and it was amazing. So very fresh. I have shed half the salt. I will definitely be making this again. Thank you!
Hi, Sherry! I am just tickled you loved this fresh salsa! It is one of our very favorite dips.