Making Salsa!!

I’ve mentioned in a few blog posts that I did not plant a garden this year. I’ve been very blessed by the neighbor down the road who has shared the bounty of his garden with us. He’s given us green beans, zucchini, yellow squash, cucumbers, and as of Sunday, tomatoes! He gave us a huge amount! Said he and his wife had canned lots of salsa and tomato juice and did not want to see them go to waste. I told him I’d make salsa from them!! And then he went out and picked green peppers and jalapenos while we were there as well. I came home and weighed what I had.. 40lbs of tomatoes!

Yesterday while grocery shopping I picked up all the rest of the needed items to make salsa. This morning I got at it and gathered it altogether to make a double batch of my salsa recipe…

I began by coring and putting my tomatoes through my food processor. I do not peel them. It is an added step that to me is unnecessary. I’ve done it this way for years now, and never had a problem with using unpeeled tomatoes…

I put the chopped/pureed tomatoes into my big 14qt stock pot and then proceeded to do the same thing with all the other ingredients.. the onions, hot peppers (make sure to wear gloves for the hot peppers!!!), green peppers, garlic, and cilantro. I put everything into my big stock pot..

And then added the vinegar and spices and heated up and let is simmer for about an hour. The recipe calls for 40 minutes. A lot of the tomatoes were very juicy so I let it simmer for a little longer than called for…

Then I added the tomato paste and let it simmer for another 20 minutes. Watch this carefully as it can easily scorch during this time. Stir it often.

While it was simmering I washed my jars and got out my rings and put them in water to heat up…   Then it was time to put in the jars.. put a lid & ring on and put them in the canner…

You use a boiling water bath for this recipe. I canned each batch for 15 minutes. I had 4 batches to do as only about 8 or 9 jars will fit in the canner at one time. In the end I had 30 pints of salsa along with a little leftover that I put in a bowl and my kids devoured it as they were coming home from work.

The recipe originally came from my friend Leah Hillman. I don’t add the sugar as we don’t care for sweet salsa. Also the heat of this salsa is determined by how many seeds you choose to include with your hot peppers. I took the seeds out of half the jalapenos and left them in for the other half. I used habanero peppers (which are very hot!!) too.. I added 4 to the whole batch. My salsa is quite spicy/hot.. but that is how we like it.. :)

Homemade Salsa for Canning

10 lbs tomatoes, chopped
6 medium onions, chopped
3 cups bell peppers (any kind), chopped
12 jalapeno peppers, chopped and seeded
5 chili peppers, chopped and seeded (this will make it spicy or milder, depending on the peppers you choose)
10 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 1/3 cups white vinegar
1/4 cup salt
2 tsp pepper
2 tsp cayenne pepper
2 tsp cumin
2 tbsp lime juice
3 cans tomato paste (the bigger cans, not the tiny ones)

Combine all ingredients except tomato paste in a large stock pot. Simmer approximately 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add tomato paste and mix well. Simmer another 20 minutes or so. At this point, I take out about half of the salsa, blend it smooth in the blender and then return it to the pot, but you can leave it chunky if you prefer. Ladle into hot jars leaving 1/4" headspace. Cap and process 15 minutes in a water bath canner. Remove jars and let cool.

This recipe makes approximately 15 pints.

The original recipe also called for 1/4 cup brown sugar and 1/4 cup white sugar, so if you like your salsa sweeter, add this in.

Thank you Leah for sharing this!!



  1. I am going to try out this salsa. My hubby eats salsa like crazy and I hate buying the stuff at the store. I have pretty much everything growing in my garden.

  2. I pinned this and this may very we'll be the first thing I ever try to can! Than you for the detailed instructions!


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