Do you love the amazing flavors of Chipotle's fresh tomato salsa, and want to replicate it at home? If so, you're in the right place! Chipotle's version of pico de gallo only takes seven ingredients, and is the perfect condiment for tortilla chips, tacos, burritos, or bowls with its bright citrus flavors and hints of spiciness.
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You might be wondering what is in Chipotle's tomato salsa. According to Chipotle's official recipe shared on TikTok in February 2021, their fresh tomato salsa contains seven simple ingredients. Let's talk about each one!
- Tomatoes: This is the most obvious ingredient, but still so important. Make sure to choose bright red, ripe beefsteak tomatoes that have a great flavor. (Chipotle actually removes most of the watery pulp and seeds from the tomatoes, but I wouldn't worry about doing that unless you're really picky.)
- Red Onion: This type of onion provides a beautiful color contrast and lots of crunch with a slightly milder flavor than yellow onion. If you need to substitute, use white onion, as it's fairly similar in taste.
- Cilantro: This popular Mexican herb is actually the leaves from the coriander plant, and is a key ingredient in this recipe. Make sure to roughly chop both the leaves and stems. If you're genetically predisposed to dislike cilantro, substitute it with parsley.
- Jalapeño: This green chili pepper adds crunch and a hint of spiciness. For a mild salsa, leave out the seeds and membranes from the peppers, but for extra heat, add them. You can also add extra jalapeño if you want.
- Lemon Juice: Chipotle uses a 50-50 blend of lemon and lime juice. Squeeze your own lemons instead of using bottled or concentrated juice, as it will make a big difference in the flavor.
- Lime Juice: Make sure to squeeze your own limes for the freshest flavor!
- Kosher Salt: This type of salt has larger crystals than fine table salt. If you're substituting table salt, cut down the amount to ½ teaspoon instead of ¾ teaspoon, then add more to taste.
What is Chipotle's fresh tomato salsa?
Fresh tomato salsa is Chipotle's mildest one, and is their take on Mexican pico de gallo. It consists of a mixture of fresh tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, cilantro, lemon and lime juice, and salt. Whether you enjoy it on a taco or burrito or simply with tortilla chips, the bright flavors and crunchy texture of the fresh tomato salsa is delightful!
Which Chipotle salsa is the best?
That's totally up to you! Personally, I like both Chipotle's fresh tomato salsa (their mild one) and tomatillo green chili salsa (their medium spicy one). They also have a hot one, which is the tomatillo red chili salsa. Most customers seem to prefer the fresh tomato salsa, as it's the mildest one.
Which Chipotle salsa is not spicy?
This fresh tomato salsa is the mildest one at Chipotle, so if you can't tolerate spicy foods, it's the one for you. However, sometimes you can still get a kick of jalapeño depending upon the batch, but if you eat it with a bunch of other food in a burrito bowl or taco, you won't notice it very much.
Does Chipotle make their own salsa?
Yes, Chipotle prides themselves on making all of their salsas fresh in the restaurant. All the ingredients are hand-chopped, and the citrus juices are freshly squeezed for the best flavor. Make sure to squeeze your own lemons and limes, too--you'll be amazed at the bright, zesty flavor it brings!
Can I make the fresh tomato salsa in advance?
It's best to eat this tomato salsa (pico de gallo) within 8 hours of making it, as the longer it sits, the more soggy it becomes. The salt and citrus juices pull out water from the tomatoes and onions, which can start to make it mushy with time. Be sure to store it tightly covered in the refrigerator.
How to Make
Gather the ingredients for the fresh tomato salsa.
Finely chop all the veggies, making sure to chop the cilantro leaves and stems. Leave out the seeds and membranes from the jalapeños if you want no spiciness, and wear food-safe gloves while handling the peppers if your skin is sensitive. Squeeze the juice from the lemons and limes.
Place the chopped tomatoes, onion, cilantro, and jalapeño in a large bowl.
Mix together until well blended.
Add the freshly squeezed lemon and lime juices.
Add the Kosher salt and mix well. Taste and add more citrus juice or salt as desired.
Serve with tortilla chips or spoon onto tacos, burritos, or burrito bowls.
- Additional Seasonings: I like to add a touch of ground cumin, Mexican oregano, and black pepper to my pico de gallo.
- Garlic: Add 1 tablespoon of freshly minced garlic for a lovely burst of flavor.
- Mild: Omit the seeds and white membranes from the jalapeños.
- Extra Heat: Increase the jalapeño, making sure to include the seeds and white membranes, or add a little bit of finely chopped serrano pepper.
- Finely chop the veggies to make the salsa easier to eat. Make sure to use a very sharp knife or a food processor to make the chopping easier.
- Want the salsa mild or hot? For mild salsa, use a grapefruit spoon to scoop out the seeds and membranes from the peppers, then discard them. For extra heat, add all the seeds and membranes and increase the amount of jalapeño to taste.
- Is your skin sensitive to hot peppers? Wear food-safe gloves when handling them.
- Make it easy to squeeze the juice from lemons and limes. Roll the fruits on the counter with the palm of your hand to soften them, then cut them in half crosswise and use a citrus press or reamer to extract the juice. For stubborn limes, you can microwave their halves for 20-30 seconds on high to soften them even more.
- Stuck without fresh lemons or limes? Substitute with an equal volume of distilled white vinegar. While it's not as lovely as the fresh citrus juice, it will provide the acidity you need.
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Chipotle Fresh Tomato Salsa (Copycat Recipe)
- 1 lb +3 oz ripe tomatoes, about 3 cups finely diced
- ¾ cup red onion, finely diced
- ¾ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- ⅓ cup fresh jalapeño, finely diced
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed
- 3 tablespoons lime juice, freshly squeezed
- ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
- Stir together the tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, and cilantro until combined. Add the lemon and lime juices and salt, mix well, then taste. Add more lime and lemon juice or salt as desired.
- Cover and chill until ready to serve. The salsa will taste better if it has a little time to sit, as it allows the salt and citrus juices to pull water from the tomatoes and onion. However, the longer it sits, the more soggy the salsa becomes, so try to eat it all within 8-12 hours.
- Make it easier to squeeze the citrus by first rolling the fruits on the counter with the palm of your hand to soften them. Cut them in half crosswise, then juice with your preferred method. Limes can be further softened by microwaving them on high for 20-30 seconds after being cut in half.
- Adjust the spiciness to taste. If you want to make the salsa mild, don't add any of the seeds and white membranes in the jalapeños; if you want it spicy, add all the seeds and membranes. You can also increase the amount of jalapeño if you would like.
- Use a grapefruit spoon to scoop out the seeds and membranes from the jalapeños. If you have very sensitive skin, wear food-safe gloves when touching the hot peppers.
- Don't have fresh lemons or limes? Substitute their juice with an equal volume of distilled white vinegar. While it won't taste the same, it will still bring lots of acidity to the salsa.
- Add more citrus juice or salt to taste. The exact taste of the salsa will vary depending upon the flavors of the individual ingredients, and you may need more lemon juice, lime juice, or salt than the recipe dictates.
Serving sizes and nutritional information are only an estimate and may vary from your results.