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Extension > Food > Food Safety > Preserving and Preparing > Tomatoes and Salsa > Home Canned Tomato-Based Salsa Ingredients

Tomatoes and Salsa

Home Canned Tomato-Based Salsa Ingredients

By Carol Ann Burtness, Extension Educator —Food Safety

Revised February 2011 by LouAnn Jopp; peer reviewed 2012 by Suzanne Driessen, Extension Educator — Food Safety.

Home Canned Tomato-Based Salsa Ingredients

Most tomato-based salsas are a mixture of tomatoes, onions, peppers and spices. To home can in a boiling water bath, YOU MUST FOLLOW research-tested recipes to assure the proportion of acidic ingredients is high enough for food safety. If there isn't enough acid, the salsa must be pressure canned.

Acidic Ingredients

Because the acidity level of tomatoes varies greatly, more acid must be added to produce a safe salsa.

If you are not using a tested recipe or like being creative with your salsa mixtures, you can pressure can the salsa, store it in the refrigerator or freeze it. Pressure canning and freezing will soften the salsa.

Tomatoes

The type of tomato affects salsa quality.

Salsa can be thickened by adding tomato paste.

Green tomatoes or tomatillos (Mexican husk tomatoes) can be substituted for red tomatoes or mixed with them.

Pressure canning and freezing
will soften the salsa.

Peppers

Use high quality peppers:

Mild peppers include: bell, sweet cherry, pimiento and sweet banana and usually are larger (four to ten inches long) than hot peppers.

Spices and herbs

Store home-canned salsa in a cool, dark place. For best quality and nutritive value, use within one year.

Sources

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