Salsa cruda…

Is that not just the prettiest thing you’ve ever seen?

Fresh, fresher, FRESHEST garden vegetables. Summer’s song, captured in a bowl of crisp salsa cruda: chopped fresh veggies, lightly seasoned with chili and/or cumin.

Here’s the basic recipe, which makes about 2 1/2 cups of crisp, chunky salsa. Feel free to amend it (or increase it) as desired.

1 1/2 cups diced Roma or plum tomato, about 2 tomatoes
1/3 cup diced red onion
1/3 cup diced red bell pepper
1/3 cup diced green bell pepper
1 to 2 peeled garlic cloves, minced
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin, to taste
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro, or to taste; optional

Let’s start with the tomatoes – I’m using Roma, as they’re less juicy than most. I prefer a salsa that’s more veggies, less juice.

Chop into 3/8” pieces. Now, don’t make yourself crazy measuring exactly; anywhere between 1/4” and 1/2” is fine. You just want fairly small dice.

In fact, it helps to have all the veggies chopped to a similar size. A pair of scissors works well with the red and green bell peppers.

Here it all is: peppers, onions, tomatoes, cilantro, garlic.

Stir together. Add the salt and cumin to taste.

Lovely! Serve with crisp tortilla chips, or toasted pitas.

How about a sweet-tangy pineapple salsa?

Here are the ingredients:

1 1/2 cups grilled pineapple, diced
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup diced red onion
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced
1 to 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus extra leaves for garnish
¼ teaspoon salt

First, slice a fresh pineapple in 1/4”-thick slices.

Place on a lightly greased or parchment-lined baking sheet, and bake in a 350°F oven for about 50 minutes…

…till the pineapple is noticeably dry, and barely beginning to brown around the edges.

Dice the pineapple into 3/8” (or so) pieces.

Toss with the remaining ingredients.

Scoop it up!

And then there’s black bean and fresh corn salsa. Using the original salsa cruda recipe, substitute 1/2 cup cooked or canned black beans and 1/2 cup uncooked fresh corn kernels for 1 cup of the diced tomatoes.

Hint: a corn stripper removes kernels from an ear of fresh corn beautifully intact.

Read, rate, and review (please!) our recipe for Salsa Cruda.

PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!


  1. Stephanie

    No lemon or lime juice? Wow!

    Definitely add it if you like it. Lime juice is especially tasty – a tablespoon or so is great. Thanks for the reminder, Stephanie. PJH

  2. Shirley

    Just thinking about how many variations there are for the tomato salsa. I have an old recipe for “cowboy caviar” that has essentially the same ingredients plus canned black eyed peas and diced avacado.

  3. KimberlyD

    I have made my own fresh salsa and never thought of adding pineapple to it. I can see this getting made as soon as fresh tomatoes grow. Put this in my file!

  4. Margy

    Great minds must think alike—I just made a batch of salsa today before I saw this post–spring onions and the first local tomatoes from the farmers market, cilantro from my herb garden, and jalepenos that I froze from last summer. Mmmm, summer in a bowl! Can’t wait to make the pineapple salsa, althougth I may try grilling the pineapple on my Griddler or outside—it’s too wicked hot to turn on the oven right now! Pineapple salsa is divine with grilled salmon!

  5. Laura

    This makes the salsa in the fridge look sad and lonely, I hear it calling out for a friend. What did you say? You want some pineapple salsa to come keep you company? Okay. I can’t wait to try this.

    My peaches are telling me they want to join the fun, too… 🙂 PJH


Post a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *