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Mild Tomato Salsa

I got this salsa recipe from my sister, and my children and I have been making batches of it ever since. We pair pint jars with packages of tortilla chips for zesty Christmas gifts. When the kids give this present to their teachers, they can truthfully say they helped make it. —Pamela Lundstrum, Bird Island, Minnesota
  • Total Time
    Prep: 40 min. + simmering Process: 20 min.
  • Makes
    10 pints


  • 10-1/2 pounds tomatoes (about 35 medium), peeled and quartered
  • 4 medium green peppers, chopped
  • 3 large onions, chopped
  • 2 cans (12 ounces each) tomato paste
  • 1-3/4 cups white vinegar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 medium sweet red pepper, chopped
  • 1 celery rib, chopped
  • 15 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4 to 5 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 1/4 cup canning salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon hot pepper sauce


  • In a large stockpot, cook tomatoes, uncovered, over medium heat 20 minutes. Drain, reserving 2 cups liquid. Return tomatoes to the pot.
  • Stir in green peppers, onions, tomato paste, vinegar, sugar, red pepper, celery, garlic, jalapenos, canning salt, hot pepper sauce and reserved tomato liquid. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 1 hour, stirring frequently.
  • Ladle hot mixture into 10 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 20 minutes. Remove jars and cool.
Editor's Note
Wear disposable gloves when cutting hot peppers; the oils can burn skin. Avoid touching your face.
Nutrition Facts
2 tablespoons: 14 calories, 0 fat (0 saturated fat), 0 cholesterol, 182mg sodium, 3g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 1g fiber), 0 protein.

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  • byersje
    Aug 29, 2020

    Excellent recipe. I make this salsa every year and give mini jars away as gifts.

  • jenwand
    Sep 18, 2019

    I have been making this recipe for many years now and it is the absolute best. I get comments all the time that I need to start a business in selling salsa. I have tweaked it a little bit, instead of all Jalapeno's I add 3 jalapeno peppers, chopped, 6 Serrano peppers, chopped. It gives it a little more of a kick. Thank you so much for sharing so many years ago!

  • Vanessa
    Dec 1, 2017

    This year my husband planted over 20 tomato plants in our garden because last year the tomatoes were a flop.....I was so happy with the crop, but soon became worried about what to do with all of the neighbour suggested I make salsa...I have never made salsa before.....I used this recipe and the results were fantastic. I have made 3 batches and each time I alter it a bit by adding various types of hot peppers to the mix. I have also doubled up the amounts of ingredients. Some friends love hot hot hot so I added Epicure Poco Picante at the end one one batch right before canning they said it was perfect. Everyone loves the Salsa!! Thank you for sharing!!

  • Pat
    Aug 13, 2017

    This is VERY GOOD salsa as is, but I added a good teaspoon of ground cumin, because we love it. Will definitely make again.

  • SkylineLee
    Jun 14, 2017

    I made this yesterday and it was VERY good. I don't believe I will ever buy salsa again.

  • MJiowa
    Aug 19, 2016

    Tastes great!! I was short a pepper so felt comfortable adding some cilantro. Switched out a 1/2 cup white vinegar for cider vinegar. I wish there was a way to not half to use store bought tomato paste but all in all very happy. Took me 3.5 hours start to finish.

  • ClydeWoman
    Aug 12, 2016

    I prefer a more authentic salsa without so much sugar or vinegar but this salsa had plenty of fresh flavors.

  • VienneM
    Nov 24, 2015

    First time I made salsa- and it is the best salsa I've ever tasted!!! Not very sweet compared to some other homemade salsa I've tried. If you like spicy you could definitely up the jalape?os/hot sauce. Make sure to mince the garlic very fine. If you like very thick salsa, just add back a little less tomato juice than the recipe calls for. Also be sure to really break up the tomatoes when cooking (unless you like really big chunks). Most people who have tried this have asked for the recipe! We gobbled it up in a big hurry and I am about to make a second batch:)

  • Hanson13nd
    Oct 24, 2015

    This is an AWESOME Salsa, Yeah Its Sweet which is Perfect for my mom and I Love it too. Made 1/6 and 1/12 th of this Recipe four times Now. Is so Good... I Used Ten Times the Jalapenos and Added Cilantro Probably be about 1/3 Cup Dried Cilantro for Full Recipe, To Make a Nice Sweet n' Spicy.

  • sarahbaguley101
    Oct 19, 2015

    Awesome recipe. A tad sweet. Next time I'll add sugar a little at a time.