An easy recipe for copycat Chipotle Tomato Salsa (Pico de gallo). Mild in flavor (or make it spicier to taste!), it only takes 7 ingredients to make this delicious, fresh tomato salsa at home.
No burrito bowl is complete without a spoonful of this colorful, chunky salsa. Make your other favorite Chipotle menu items with my complete copycat collection. Start with cilantro lime rice, then Sofritas or Barbacoa, a dollop of Hot Salsa, and lots of Guacamole. Then wash everything down with an icy Strawberry Margarita.
Tomato salsa is a super quick, ultra fresh, healthy/vegan/gluten-free/paleo/anyone-can-eat-this salsa.
It's great on the side of any/all the Mexican food in your life, and it's also fantastic in unexpected places (such as added to tuna salad on a sandwich).
Chipotle's version is made with 7 ingredients and it's ready in just a few minutes. You're officially out of excuses not to make it!
All the ingredients are raw, no cooking required. Just chop everything up and you're ready to chip and dip.
Making Chipotle's pico de gallo for a chip-and-dip party? I guarantee you'll need to make more. Just click and slide the number next to “servings” on the recipe card below to adjust the ingredients to match how many you’re feeding—the recipe figures it out for you, it’s that easy.
The Chipotle Salsa scale, in order of hotness:
- Mild: this one right here, the fresh Tomato Salsa, the chunkiest of the bunch.
- Corn: White sweet corn and roasted poblano peppers, it's sweet with just a hint of heat.
- Medium: Tomatillo Salsa, made with jalapeños, tomatillos, and tomatoes.
- Hot: fire it up with Hot Salsa, made with fire-roasted chilies and tomatillos.
Chipotle tomato salsa ingredients:
- Tomatoes. To have the best fresh tomato salsa, you need to start with the best, ripest tomatoes. For me, this usually means the vine-ripened tomatoes at my local grocery store. However, if it's the right season and you have access to a garden or your local farmer's market, even better!
- Jalapeño peppers. For extra spicy salsa, search out Serrano peppers, which are hotter. They look like a smaller, slightly straighter jalapeño. If you don't like spicy salsa, make this recipe with a green bell pepper for a little crunch.
- Onion. Authentic Chipotle salsa uses red onions, but you can use white or yellow.
- Citrus juice. Chipotle loves a blend of lemon and lime juice.
- Cilantro. Leave this out or sub parsley if you don't love cilantro.
How does Chipotle make their salsa?
It's true. This recipe takes a fair amount of chopping and prep work to get the chunky consistency we know and love.
What if I hate cilantro?
As a cilantro fanatic, I fully endorse this herb. However, 4-14% of the population have the ability to taste a natural compound in the plant that most cilantro-lovers can't. To the super-tasters, cilantro tastes like soap or metal. Yuck.
If you're the one who yells "I hate cilantro!" you're definitely not alone. Julia Child hated it, too!
Just leave it out. And if you like, you can substitute fresh parsley in the recipe.
- Add chips (and maybe guacamole!), add it to your favorite burrito bowl, pour it on tacos, eat it with grilled chicken, eat it with a spoon.
- One of my favorite ways to eat tomato salsa is to mix it in with tuna salad and eat it on a sandwich. AMAZING.
- Mix pico de gallo with some shredded green cabbage, extra lime juice, and salt, and serve it with fresh fish, especially grilled swordfish.
- Add it to an omelette with a dollop of sour cream.
- Dress up a simple bowl of black beans or pinto beans for a quick lunch or dinner.
How long does Chipotle Tomato Salsa last?
This salsa can be made 1-2 days ahead of time, because the flavors meld together and taste even better.
Always store fresh tomato salsa in a sealed container in the refrigerator, and eat within the week. Because everything is raw and uncooked, it won't freeze well.
Chipotle Tomato Salsa Recipe (Copycat)
- 1 pound tomatoes cut into 1/4-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
- 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
- 3 jalapeño peppers seeded, stemmed, and finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (from 1-2 lemons)
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (from 1-2 limes)
- Salt to taste
- Tortilla chips for serving
- In a medium bowl, combine tomatoes, red onion, cilantro, jalapeño, lemon juice, and lime juice. Season to taste with salt.
- Let stand at least 10 minutes at room temperature to blend flavors. Serve with chips.