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Everyone’s Favorite: Canning Salsa

As the vibrant days of summer transition into fall, gardeners and farmers alike face the challenge of managing their surplus of fresh tomatoes, peppers, and other garden goodies. One of the most delightful ways to extend the flavors of summer well into the cooler months is by canning salsa. This homemade, shelf-stable condiment adds a burst of flavor to your meals and makes for excellent gifts. In this guide, we’ll take you through the art of canning salsa, allowing you to enjoy the taste of summer year-round.


  • Canning jars (pint-sized or quart-sized)
  • Canning lids and bands
  • Large pot or canning water bath canner
  • Jar lifter
  • Canning funnel
  • Lid lifter
  • Bubble remover tool
  • Cutting board and knife
  • Large mixing bowl
  • Ladle
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Towels or cooling racks

Which Tomatoes?

I used Roma tomatoes which are considered paste tomatoes. What are paste tomatoes? Paste tomatoes, often referred to as “plum tomatoes” or “processing tomatoes,” are a specific type of tomato cultivar that is characterized by its oblong or pear-shaped appearance. These tomatoes are prized for their unique characteristics, making them ideal for various culinary purposes, particularly for making tomato paste, sauces, and canning.

To learn more about paste tomatoes and about peeling and seeding your tomatoes, check out our post. Also, learn proper canning techniques.

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Everyone’s Favorite: Canning Salsa

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Units Scale
  • 1012 cups of chopped tomatoes (about 20-24 medium tomatoes)
  • 2 cups chopped onions
  • 2 cups chopped bell peppers
  • 23 jalapeño peppers (adjust for desired spiciness)
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice (freshly squeezed or bottled)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp cumin (optional)
  • 1 tsp chili powder (adjust to taste)
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped (optional)


  1. Start by blanching the tomatoes to make peeling easier. Score the bottom of each tomato with a shallow “X,” then dip them in boiling water for about 30 seconds. Transfer them to an ice water bath and peel off the skin. Afterward, you can core and chop the tomatoes to your desired consistency.
  2. Chop the onions, bell peppers, jalapeño peppers, and garlic. Be mindful of the level of spiciness you want in your salsa, adjusting the number of jalapeños accordingly. Fresh cilantro and spices can also be added for flavor enhancement.
  3. Combine all your chopped ingredients in a large pot. Add lemon juice, salt, sugar, and any optional spices. Bring the mixture to a boil and then simmer for around 10-15 minutes, allowing the flavors to meld.
  4. Use a canning funnel to fill sterilized canning jars with the hot salsa, leaving about 1/2-inch of headspace at the top. Use a bubble remover tool to eliminate air bubbles by running it around the inside of the jar. Wipe the jar rims clean to ensure a proper seal.
  5. Place sterilized canning lids on the jars and screw on the bands until they are fingertip-tight. Using a jar lifter, carefully lower the filled jars into a boiling water bath canner, ensuring they are fully submerged in water. Process pint-sized jars for 15 minutes or adjust the processing time based on your altitude and jar size.
  6. After processing, remove the jars from the water bath and place them on a towel or cooling rack. As they cool, you should hear the lids “pop,” indicating a proper seal. Store the sealed jars in a cool, dark place.
  • Author: Kari

Enjoy your salsa

Canning salsa is a rewarding process that allows you to capture the essence of summer in a jar. Your homemade salsa can be used as a condiment, a dip, or an ingredient in various dishes. Additionally, they make delightful gifts for friends and family. So, next time your garden is overflowing with tomatoes and peppers, consider canning salsa to preserve the flavors of summer for the months to come. With the right ingredients and a little effort, you’ll have a pantry full of homemade goodness to savor throughout the year.

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