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Spicy Restaurant Style Salsa Recipe

Get your chips ready! This Spicy Restaurant Style Salsa recipe takes minutes to make. You’ll be dipping away in no time.

A white bowl filled with red Spicy Restaurant Style Salsa specked with green and topped with cilantro leaves sits surrounded by tortilla chips on a plate. It's situated on a linen cloth.

There’s a Mexican restaurant not far from where we live that makes an incredible pureed salsa. It’s bold and nuanced, filled with a symphony of flavors. I love it. It used to be my salsa of choice when we’d eat there — every table gets a bowl of either the pureed salsa or the mild chunky one. Now that we only order takeout, I buy some nearly every time.

That’s what a good salsa does. It makes you want more. It makes you crave it.

This homemade Spicy Restaurant Style Salsa is based on that favorite one. Easy to make year-round with a combination of pantry ingredients and fresh ones, it creates a spicy salsa filled with nuance and savory undertones like the restaurant one I enjoy.

A white bowl filled with red salsa specked with green and topped with cilantro leaves sits surrounded by tortilla chips on a plate.

Of course, you should know that making this Spicy Restaurant Style Salsa recipe isn’t going to take long. In fact, it takes minutes to make. It doesn’t have a lot of steps either. It’s fast, easy and simple, relying on the natural goodness of the ingredients to create something incredible with depth.

It does get better on standing, so if you can — let it sit for 20 or 30 minutes before digging in. It’s good before then, of course, but it gets better with time.

This salsa is perfect for serving as a dip with tortilla chips. But it’s good for so much more than that. Enjoy this salsa with chicken tacos, your favorite black bean nachos, or even with cheddar omelets. Really, anytime you’re reaching for salsa, this is a great option to have on hand.


Yield: serves a crowd

Restaurant Style Salsa

Restaurant Style Salsa


  • 1 28-oz can peeled plum tomatoes, not drained
  • ¼ cup chopped red onions
  • ¼ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • ½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1-2 jalapeño peppers, lightly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped (optional)
  • 2 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 tsp salt, or more to taste
  • ½ tsp cumin
  • ½ tsp sugar


  1. Combine all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to desired consistency. I like to leave it a little on the chunkier side.
  2. Serve with tortilla chips.


HINT: Like your salsa mild? Use 1 jalapeño and remove the seeds before adding.

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