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Spicy Chunky Salsa

Vinegar adds a refreshing tang to this sweet tomato salsa. It's wonderful as is, but for more heat, leave in some hot pepper seeds. —Donna Goutermont, Sequim, Washington
  • Total Time
    Prep: 1-1/2 hours Process: 15 min.
  • Makes
    8 pints


  • 6 pounds tomatoes
  • 3 large green peppers, chopped
  • 3 large onions, chopped
  • 2 cups white vinegar
  • 1 large sweet red pepper, chopped
  • 1 can (12 ounces) tomato paste
  • 4 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 2 serrano peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup minced fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup bottled lemon juice
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce


  • In a Dutch oven, bring 2 quarts water to a boil. Using a slotted spoon, place tomatoes, a few at a time, in boiling water for 30-60 seconds. Remove each tomato and immediately plunge into ice water. Drain and pat dry. Peel and finely chop tomatoes to measure 9 cups; place in a stockpot.
  • Stir in remaining ingredients. Add water to cover; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, until slightly thickened, about 30 minutes.
  • Ladle hot mixture into hot 1-pint jars, leaving 1/2-in. headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace, if necessary, by adding hot mixture. Wipe rims. Center lids on jars; screw on bands until fingertip tight.
  • Place jars into canner with simmering water, ensuring that they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil; process for 15 minutes. Remove jars and cool.
Nutrition Facts
1/4 cup: 25 calories, 0 fat (0 saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 117mg sodium, 6g carbohydrate (4g sugars, 1g fiber), 1g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 1/2 starch.

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Average Rating:
  • Dennis
    Sep 21, 2020

    This recipe requires considerable tweaking in my estimation! Firstly the sugar is definitely NOT required. The simmer times are way off. This could take several hours to get the proper consistency. I made a batch but had to add double the hot peppers and garlic to get any kind of a descent flavor at all. I would not recommend this recipe as written. Sorry!

  • gaylene2
    Sep 5, 2019

    My neighbor gave me lots of salsa tomatoes so I knew I was committed! I cut them into one inch pieces and then let my Oscar do the rest of the chopping. I also used the Oscar for the onions. I reduced the amount of hot peppers so my family would go for this recipe! I had to SCRAPE the skin off the tomatoes even though I had doused them in boiling water but after awhile I got the hang of it and it went faster. My husband really liked the flavor.

  • Ayla
    Oct 12, 2018

    I like this recipe. I read the reviews first and cut some vi gar out. 1cup instead of 2cups per recipe. I tripled this recipe as we had a lot of tomatoes to process. So since I tripled this recipe I used 3cups of vinegar and in another batch I used 4 cups of vinegar. I will be fiddling with this recipe more and more as we use it. I feel I actually need even more vinegar yet and we wanted VERY spicy salsa and for my husband and I all the peppers in this recipe and 6 habaneros/seeds later it was not even hot to us! This recipe is still really good and I do recommend it. I do not actually know how long it took to simmer down into a good consistency but I would have to say probably about 40 minutes. We have fun doing the salsa so time flies. I know there was a complaint or two on here about the time it took to reduce. Overall, I would reccomend it. It takes time to perfect anything so it is a good starter salsa to make your own. Add or subtract as needed to your own personal tastes!

  • marinaleah
    Oct 8, 2016

    Wayyyy Wayyy too much vinegar. I would cut the vinegar in half. I ended up having to double the rest of the ingredients. I also cooked it for2 hours.

  • tidewater1948
    Aug 9, 2016

    I'm hard pressed to give this recipe even one star. Don't waste your time or ingredients on it. Too much vinegar and not much else for flavor. I'm either going to have to come up with a way to use it, doctor it up or throw it out! I had an absolutely wonderful recipe the last couple years but cannot find it. Changed computers and can't find where it is saved. This looked similar but apparently not! Anyway, I don't know how these people giving it 5 stars are able to eat it!

  • redcow
    Sep 11, 2015

    I have made 2 batches of this salsa in the last week. Really like it. I do cook it down longer than recipe states, probably 2-3 hours. I only used 1-6 oz. can of tomato paste. I did not add the serrano peppers, as I did not grow any in my garden. Will make this again next tomato season.

  • debpenns
    Jul 31, 2015

    No comment left

  • Lisadan
    Oct 10, 2014

    Best chunky salsa ever my family loves it I find myself doing this pretty often this is def a must try recipe .

  • nana2602
    Aug 23, 2014

    This is a tasty recipe, but I used 12 lbs of tomatoes thinking I could make a double batch, but those 12 lbs only made 10 cups. I did drain all the juice and seeded most of them. I used some roma and other medium size tomatoes. I like roma as they seem meatier. I, too reduced the sugar and vinegar and doubled the hot peppers and it still wasn't hot, used some with seeds and some without. Great texture and flavor. Will be making it again soon.

  • sjfleming
    Aug 17, 2014

    First batch was excellent and the entire family loved it but tweeking just a bit for the 2nd batch. This time I will use a few more tomatoes and hot peppers. Probably double the tomato paste because we like it a bit thicker and spicier. Excellent recipe because it can be easily adjusted to your own personal taste!