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Tomato, Onion and Cilantro Salsa

As you are probably already aware, salsa has long since taken the top spot among condiments at tables all over America. There is no doubt that salsa is a popular accompaniment with many meals (including some decidedly non-Mexican dishes) and becoming more so all the time. While there are many different tomato salsas to choose from in grocery stores, like anything else, the results are always better when you can make it yourself.

This recipe is for a very basic tomato, onion, and cilantro salsa, which goes well with almost anything. The bright acidity of the tomato and lime juice matches perfectly with the bite of the onion, the heat of the jalapeno or Serrano peppers and the herbal tang of the cilantro to create a classic tomato salsa.

It’s easy to make and takes very little time to prepare; as long as you have all of the necessary ingredients on hand, this salsa can be made in as little as five minutes (though like any salsa, it improves if allowed to sit a few hours or overnight for the flavors to blend.

This is one of those simple, all-purpose, but oh-so-delicious recipes that you will probably find yourself actually looking for excuses to make and serve – not that you need any excuse to enjoy salsa, especially when it is this good. Whether with Mexican dishes, served as a dip with chips or along with any meat or vegetable dish, this is a classic go-to salsa. It is a salsa that you will even love along with scrambled eggs and other savory breakfast dishes. This recipe is also easy to adjust to meet your tolerance for hot peppers – simply use more or less peppers as desired to match the tastes of yourself or your guests.

Typical salsa ingredients like tomatoes, onion, chilies, cilantro, and lime come together to make this exquisite-tasting dish, and you will find it goes perfectly with all kinds of dishes. Adjust the flavors if you want, adding more cilantro perhaps or cutting back on the chilies, or else make it exactly as detailed below.

Basic Tomato Salsa
Summary: This simple salsa recipe is better made a day ahead if you want the flavors to mellow out, and the tomatoes, chilies and other flavors come together perfectly.
Cuisine: Mexican
Recipe type: Sauce
Serves: 4
Prep time: 
Total time: 
  • 3-4 medium tomatoes, diced
  • 1 small red onion, finely diced
  • 1-2 jalapeno or Serrano chili, diced
  • ? cup cilantro, chopped finely
  • Juice of one lime
  • Salt, black pepper and cumin, to taste
  • This recipe makes approximately four cups of salsa
  1. Salsa is usually a pretty easy thing to make and this tomato salsa recipe is no exception.
  2. All you need to do here is chop your ingredients, mix them together and then taste and adjust your seasonings until you are satisfied with the end result.
  3. Refrigerate the salsa and allow it to rest for at least an hour if possible for the flavors to develop before serving.
  4. Overnight is even better, but if you are pressed for time, an hour will do.

Photo Description:

Fresh and delicious, this homemade salsa features fresh produce like tomatoes, onions, chilies, cilantro and lime juice. Made from fresh ingredients only, how could this be anything other than exquisite? Brightly colored and aromatic, this salsa is simple to make because you only have to combine the ingredients, and you can see how attractive it is in this photo. Roma tomatoes are pictured here but you can use any kind you wish. Vine-ripened tomatoes cost a few cents more but they are extra aromatic and well worth using to make this.

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Christine Szalay-Kudra

Hi, I'm Christine, and I'm pleased to welcome you to I have endeavored to gather as many delicious South of the border recipes here for you, including Mexican-inspired as well as traditional Mexican, and also some Tex-Mex and Mexican fusion dishes. Food is very important to our family's lives and Mexican food is certainly a favorite around here.

We have everything from appetizers and snacks to soups, drinks, entrées, and much more. You will find everything from mild dishes to super-spicy ones, simple recipes based on fresh ingredients up to more complex ones suitable for a dinner party.

Home cooks just starting out with Mexican cooking tend to be surprised how much of the emphasis is placed on using fresh ingredients and aromatic herbs and spices. Forget the typical ideas about Mexican food being all beans, cheese and beef (that applies a little more to Tex-Mex), take inspiration from authentic Mexican dishes based on fresh ingredients, and inject all your passion into cooking South of the border food, for perfect results every time.

Thanks for visiting,