The Cozy Cook

Restaurant Salsa

This restaurant style salsa recipe is so fresh and easy to make with canned or garden tomatoes. You’ll love the authentic Mexican flavors and simple ingredients.

Be sure to serve this with my easy Salsa Chicken  or Taco Lasagna!

a large wooden bowl filled with homemade salsa with a cilantro leave on top and 2 lime wedges in the front.

Restaurant Salsa

Making this salsa recipe takes nothing more then blending the ingredients together and letting it chill. It’s also so easy to add in extra ingredients like corn and black beans!

I’ve been making this recipe for several years and  just love what little effort it takes.

Plus, you can totally freeze leftovers. (How you ask?)- Read on!


  • Tomatoes– Canned plum tomatoes or your own canned tomatoes from the garden.
  • Garlic- Use fresh garlic whenever possible.
  • Lime Juice
  • Jalapenos
  • Sugar
  • White Onion
  • Cilantro
  • Cumin
  • Salt

overhead view of ingredients needed to make homemade salsa

How to Make it

Blend the Ingredients

  • Add everything to a food processor or a blender and pulse it until it’s reached your desired consistency.

Let it Chill

  • Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow it to chill and for the flavors to blend. The longer you chill, the more flavorful it will be.


Pro Tip: I love this mini food processor because it takes up such a small amount of space. (Although I have to blend this salsa in 2 batches with it.)

side by side view of food processor before and after homemade salsa ingredients are mixed together.

Using Leftover Salsa



  • This salsa should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge. It’s best if used within 5 days. Or, you can also freeze it!


  • Freezing leftover salsa is an excellent alternative to letting it go bad in your refrigerator. There are just a few tricks you need to know:
    • Thicken it up: Otherwise it will be too watery after being frozen. You can do this one of two ways:
      • Mix in tomato paste. 
      • Simmer it on the stove to let excess liquid evaporate. Let it cool completely before freezing.
    • Store in portion sized containers with a little excess room at the top for expansion when it freezes.

overhead view of a large wooden bowl willed with salsa sitting on a cutting board with tortilla chips and diced jalapeno.

☝️ This is the bowl pictured in this recipe and I love it, I bought it specifically for serving up this salsa. It fits a ton and is great for a crowd. The quality is fantastic and it looks like a bowl from an authentic Mexican Restaurant.

More Mexican Recipes

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👉Note: If you’re big into homemade salsas and hot sauces, you absolutely want to check out my friends at Chili Pepper Madness. They have enough mouth-watering, spicy, and delicious recipes to last you a lifetime!

A wooden bowl filled with restaurant salsa with a hand dipping a tortilla chip in it.

Restaurant Salsa

4.64 from 11 votes
This homemade salsa recipe is super fresh and tastes just like it's from a Mexican restaurant! It's easy to make with fresh or canned tomatoes. You can even freeze leftovers!


  • 28 oz. whole plum tomatoes, with the juice, 1 large can
  • 1 small white onion, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1-2 jalapeño peppers, diced, with seeds removed
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons lime juice
  • 1-2 handfuls fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar, (optional)


  • Pulse all ingredients thoroughly in a food processor until it’s reached your preferred texture. (You can also use a blender)
  • Refrigerate for a minimum of 30-60 minutes, the longer the flavors can blend together, the better!
  • Serve with your favorite Mexican foods and enjoy!




Calories: 55kcal, Carbohydrates: 12g, Protein: 2g, Sodium: 594mg, Potassium: 518mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 7g, Vitamin A: 1760IU, Vitamin C: 35.9mg, Calcium: 35mg, Iron: 1mg


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Recipe Rating

39 comments on “Restaurant Salsa”

  1. Could this be made with fresh tomatoes? Always looking for ways to use our garden tomatoes. Would anything need to be different if fresh tomatoes were used? 

  2. Can I preserve this in a hot water bath or pressure canner?itlooks just like what I want to make!

  3. My family LOVES all things Mexican. This is the BEST salsa recipe. Simple * Quick * Fresh.

    • Hi Christine! I’m so happy that you and your family enjoy it, what a perfect time of year for some homemade salsa! Thank you so much for taking the time to come back and leave a review, I really appreciate it! -Stephanie

  4. Is it spicy, we both like ours pretty spicy and I can never get it that way?

    • Hey Wendy! I would KEEP the jalapeno seeds in the salsa then, definitely!! ENJOY! I love it spicy too! -Stephanie

  5. Can you can this salsa for later instead of putting it in the refrigerator

    • Hi Drake! I’ve never canned my own salsa but I do believe you need to cook it in order to can it. I don’t know any additional details though, although it would be a nice thing to learn!

      • I did a little research and yes you can can it for up to five months but you have to add vinegar to do that to add acidity so it doesn’t go bad or get bacteria

    • I used stewed tomatoes and used almost 2 tsp of cumin. My salsa tastes great but is more of a greenish brown color. Has this happened to anyone else? Could it be that extra Cumin? I left out the sugar because we prefer salsa that it less sweet too.

      • Hi Carol, my guess would be that maybe your stewed tomatoes were a little darker in color vs. a brighter red? I’m not quite sure but I hope you liked the way it tasted! 🙂 Happy New Year! -Stephanie

  6. The one pot pizza pasta was delicious

    • Hi Deb! I’m so happy you enjoyed the one pot pizza pasta! That’s definitely a fun one that we love to make in our house! 🙂

  7. My husband eats salsa on everything and is very picky about how I make it. I followed the recipe exactly as written even adding the sugar and was surprised that he said this was Great salsa. This is a good recipe to keep on hand during the winter months when you don’t have fresh garden tomatoes.

    • Hi Colette! I’m so happy your husband loves the salsa! I have to say, I was surprised when I tried it, it really is good! Thanks so much for letting me know how you did! 🙂

  8. Hi- this was great!

  9. Holy cow, this looks like the best restaurant salsa ever and I don’t have to travel to the states to get it. 🙂 I can’t wait to try this at home.

    • YAY I hope you do get to try it, it’s so easy to just blend everything together- I eat it every day when I get home from work, it’s almost gone already… oops! 🙂

  10. Ahhhhh, thank you SO MUCH for the shout out and sweet words 😀 😀 Your salsa looks ah-mazing! I’m soooooo glad that you love the salsa… we pretty much always have a big container of it in the fridge, it’s too addicting 😉

    • I’m SO happy to have this recipe now, I’ve been dying for this exact taste in homemade salsa for evaaaaaaaaa!!!

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