Gluten-Free Tomato Salsa Recipe

Chips and a bowl of salsa
Getty Images/Jamie Grill
  • Total: 60 mins
  • Prep: 30 mins
  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yield: 3 Pints of Salsa (6 servings)

The flavor of salsa prepared with fresh tomatoes, onions, peppers, garlic, and cilantro is so much different than store-bought salsas and so much better!

After making this recipe, you'll wonder why you ever bought commercial salsas at the grocery store in the first place. Once you go homemade, there's no turning back to store bought. 

If you feel daunted by the thought of peeling tomatoes, don't be. It's not as complicated as it seems. The easiest way to peel fresh tomatoes is to place them in boiling water for 1 minute and then immerse in ice water for about 2 minutes. The skins will split and easily peel off.

After peeling the tomatoes, the rest of the salsa making takes place in one pan. All of the ingredients are combined, brought to a boil, then simmered for 30 minutes. All you have to do is stir occasionally, then cool and store in the fridge.

In addition to making your own salsa at home, you can also make homemade gluten-free tortilla chips. No need to run to the store when the munchies hit. Simply head to your own kitchen!

Updated by Stephanie Kirkos.


  • 6 medium tomatoes (fresh, peeled, cored, coarsely chopped) 
  • 1 medium onion (sweet onion, diced)
  • 1 medium bell pepper (green, diced)
  • 1 clove garlic (finely minced)
  • 2 tbsp cilantro (fresh, finely minced)
  • 1 jalapeno pepper (wear gloves to remove seeds and finely dice)
  • 1/4 tsp cumin (powder)
  • 1 can tomato paste (6-ounce)
  • 2 tbsp cider vinegar (or fresh lime juice)

Steps to Make It

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Fill a large bowl with water and ice, set aside.

  2. Peel the tomatoes: Make a small "x" shape at the bottom of each tomato. Lower tomatoes one at a time into the boiling water (if you have a wire basket, you can use that, it will make removing the tomatoes easier). Let tomatoes sit in the boiling water for 1 minute. Depending on the size of your pot and ice water, you may have to work in small batches. 

  3. Remove tomatoes from the boiling water and immediately place in ice water for about 2 minutes. Once tomatoes cool, the skins will split and easily peel off. If some areas are tough to remove, then use your fingers or even a paring knife to coax the skin off.

  4. Coarsely chop the tomatoes. If you prefer your salsa without seeds, remove the seeds while you are chopping the tomatoes.

  5. Place all ingredients in a large saucepan and bring to a boil.

  6. Simmer salsa for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  7. Cool and pour salsa into 3-pint jars. Store in refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

Tip: Be sure to wear gloves when chopping jalapeno peppers. The volatile oils can burn your skin and eyes.

Reminder: Always make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans and tools are free of gluten. Always read product labels - not all brands are created equal. Manufacturers can change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, do not buy or use a product before contacting the manufacturer for verification that the product is free of gluten.