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If you need a zesty wake-up call from your usual tomato recipes this summer, give our pico de gallo recipe a try.
This fresh and fast salsa recipe combines the best of your summer produce with just a few additional ingredients. Red onion, garlic, lime, cilantro, and jalapeño all join the fiesta to create a healthy condiment with a spicy kick.
You’ll love how easy it is to make this one-bowl wonder. Once everything is prepped and chopped, just toss together in a big bowl and serve!
Pico de gallo is great for dipping or topping a variety of Tex-Mex dishes, like a big platter of nachos. I like to put it out for guests with a big bowl of tortilla chips, and maybe a side of guacamole (or guacamole-filled deviled eggs!) made with ripe avocados.
Or, if you’re feeling wild and crazy during grilling season, use your homemade pico de gallo to top off a hot dog! You can also do a little tropical remix with this mango salsa version, or a Southern-Mexican blend with peach corn salsa, perfect for topping pork tacos.
We can’t wait for you to try this recipe. Keep reading to learn how!
- 2-3 large tomatoes (or 2 1/2 cups tomato concassée)
- 1/2 cup red onion diced
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro chopped
- 1 jalapeno seeded and diced
- 1 lime zested and juiced
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Prepare tomatoes with the concassée method. You will have a yield of about 2 1/2 cups. Add to a large bowl.
- Place the onion, garlic, cilantro, jalapeno, lime zest and juice, and olive oil in the bowl with the tomatoes, and stir gently until combined.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Place in an airtight container with a lid and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving. Use within 1-2 days.
Cooking By the Numbers…
Step 1 – Concassée the Tomatoes
Following the 3-step rule of peel-seed-dice described in this post, the concassée technique eliminates the texture of the skin and all of the excess liquid from the pulp and seeds, leaving behind the delicious flesh of the tomato.
This is useful to keep your salsa from becoming too watered down, plus it can also tone down the excess heat of spicier ingredients.
In a hurry? You can skip this step and just cut up some raw tomatoes instead. The extra liquid and skin won’t ruin your salsa, but you may need to add a little extra salt and pepper to balance the flavor.
You can always strain them after cutting, to remove some of the juice before continuing the recipe.
Step 2 – Combine the Prepped Ingredients
No extra fuss here! Simply place everything together in the bowl with the tomatoes and mix until well combined.
Step 3 – Adjust the Flavor
Add a few pinches of salt and pepper to adjust the flavor to your liking.
Jalapeños tend to vary in heat. If you prefer more spiciness, you can keep the seeds of the jalapeño rather than removing them during prep, to amp up the heat.
Step 4 – Chill, Serve & Store
Your pico de gallo can be served immediately after the last pinch of salt, but I think it is best served chilled.
Chilling in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before serving also gives the flavors a chance to meld.
If you aren’t ready to dive right in with a corn chip, you can store this fresh salsa in an airtight container with a lid in the fridge for up to two days.
As the liquids tend to seep to the bottom once after it sits for awhile, be sure to give your dip a quick stir before serving to redistribute the ingredients.
We don’t recommend storing this item for too long. The fresh herbs and vegetables tend to soften, lose their vibrancy, and release more liquid.
It’s best to enjoy soon after you make it. And who could complain about that?
Try it now on our loaded chili lime jackfruit nachos!
We know you have some extra tomatoes on your countertop just begging to be used… Definitely try this recipe at your next summer party, and tell us what you think in the comments!
Looking for more fresh salsa recipes to use up that fresh produce, and add some extra kick to your favorite recipes? Check out Foodal’s roundup of salsa recipes from some of our favorite bloggers!
Need more salsa recipes for all your zesty dipping desires? You’ll love making any of these next:
Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. See our TOS for more details.
About Nikki Cervone
Nikki Cervone is a full-time cheesemonger and specialty foods buyer living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she's not nibbling on her favorite cheeses or testing a batch of cupcakes, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga, wine, hiking, singing in the shower, and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.
10 thoughts on “Fresh and Simple Salsa: Homemade Pico de Gallo”
Oh man, I really love pico de gallo, it’s a Mexican classical in well…almost any informal meal. A little variation that I like to add to it is to put some tajin powder in it. I’m not really sure if it’s available on the US, but I think that you can get it online. And it’s literally the best condiment to pico de gallo, it has a little bit of salt, a touch of lemon and of course a not really hot touch of chili, it’s just perfect.
You can give it a try!
Yum. This is something I really enjoy. So fresh and refreshing, especially in hot weather. I had a friend who used to make this mostly from her garden. I think the only difference was the addition of olives. So tasty.
This is one of the things I always get at our favorite Mexican restaurant as well. It’s nice to know that it’s so simple to make. I’ll have to whip up a batch (or two!).
Well this certainly seems like something nice that would really put the wraps on the summer time here. I am hoping that the hot weather is coming to an end, but I do love a good salsa so this is how I will send it out. I love to see a lot of cilantro here, too, and I might just need to add more. I might also try some black bean and corn if I have them, but who knows. Thanks for sharing.
Woaw! That looks awesome! I’ve been looking for a salsa recipe for a while and this one actually looks good. I’ll definitely try it and tell you what I think afterwards. Thank you!
Really, its that simple? I always figured making pico de gallo would be much more time consuming and take more ingredients. Our family eats ton of mexican food, and we go through pico de gallo like it’s no ones business. I can’t wait to try this recipe!
I’ve had this recipe before prepared by a friend. I just didn’t know that it’s called pico de gallo. Until now, I just thought of it as my usual salsa. While TexMex dishes aren’t too common where I come from, I certainly enjoy this salsa treat with my Nachos. This combination is usually what I have every time I fancy myself going to a Mexican-themed restaurants here. But reading through the recipe, I think my lack of kitchen skills will do just fine making this on my own! Now time to buy some tortilla chips.
I don’t know if it’s the lime, or the vibrant colors or what, but pico de gallo always seems so refreshing to me. On a hot summer day it’s almost sure to get me to perk up. One nice thing about it is that it’s also fairly cheap to make. You don’t have to have a blender or any expensive ingredients to make it so it’s a good “go-to” recipe for spicing things up. Sometimes I’ll just cram it into a meal like topping a sandwich or a burger with it, just so I can have an excuse to eat some pico de gallo. It’s also a fantastic way to spice up a salad without putting any unhealthy fatty salad dressings on it. If you’re somebody that thinks baby spinach and kale sounds bland and unappealing, try it with some pico de gallo on it! You’ll never look at a salad (or salad dressing) the same way.
Thanks for sharing this! I’ve tried to make pico de gallo in the past, but it always ended up being way too watery. I’m glad this recipe included a tip for how to deal with that. My only question is that I like a really spicy pico, and I was wondering how I would make that without overloading on the jalapenos. Are there other peppers that would be good in this, or perhaps milder peppers for people who don’t like that much of a “kick”?
OMG that looks so good. I also love the fact that it’s so simple and easy to make. You can whip that up at a moments notice when you have to. I bet it tastes even better than it looks. I think it has just the right amount of kick.
This was so delicious. I could make this all the time. I’m sure my family wouldn’t mind a bit. Now, I just need more stuff to serve it with, ha ha.
I will be making more in the near future. I’ll probably serve some up for company that I’m having soon as well. I’m sure it will be a big hit. So good!
While we’re on the subject of one of my favorite types of food, does anyone have a good enchilada sauce recipe to share?