Side dish
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Quick Red Salsa

This is one of the recipes I know by heart. We have tortillas for dinner about once a week, and this salsa is always on the side. It tastes better than anything you get out of a jar, and it takes less time to make than to read the recipe.

Recipe: Quick Red Salsa (From the Food Processor)



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Quick Red Salsa

  • Author: Mike Vrobel
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 4 1x


Quick Red Salsa from the food processor. A jar of fire roasted diced tomatoes and we’re ready to go.


  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/4 cup cilantro (a small handful), washed
  • 1/2 medium onion, peeled and cut into quarters (yellow, white or red onion)
  • 1/2 Chipotle en Adobo, minced, with puree
  • 1 (28-ounce) can Muir Glen Fire Roasted Diced Tomatoes
  • Juice from 1/2 a lime
  • Salt to taste


  1. Mince the aromatics in the food processor: Drop the peeled garlic cloves into a running food processor through the feed tube. Leave the food processor running until the garlic is completely minced – you will hear it stop bouncing around in the processor – about 10 seconds. Put the cilantro in the food processor and chop until finely minced using one second pulses (about five pulses). Add the onion, and use one second pulses to chop to a medium dice (About 3 pulses.) Add the chipotle en adobo, scrape down the sides of the food processor, and pulse a couple more times to get anything that escaped the blades earlier.
  2. Process the salsa: Add the tomatoes and the lime juice. Process until you get the consistency you want – I shoot for “just a little chunky, not quite soup” – about 30 seconds. Taste for salt – I usually add 1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt – and pulse the processor once or twice to mix the salt in if it is needed.
  • Category: Salsa
  • Cuisine: Mexican


Minced garlic

Minced cilantro

About to mince onions

Everything in, ready to puree



  • Though I prefer the salsa if it is made with Muir Glen Fire Roasted Diced tomatoes, any canned diced tomato would work. I’ve had good results with Muir Glen (regular) diced, Ro*Tel, and Hunts fire roasted diced.
  • About the only way to mess up this recipe is to add too much onion, or to over-process the onion. Too much onion will overpower the rest of the ingredients – you want some bite from the onion, but don’t over do it. If you over-process the onion, you get onion water, which doesn’t taste that good. Make sure you chop the onion with one second pulses, and not by just running the processor!
  • You can make this recipe without the food processor – just chop everything fine, and mix it together in a bowl – but the food processor makes it so easy…
  • Salsa tastes best if it rests for a half an hour for the flavors to mingle. It will keep for about a 4 days in the refrigerator.

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Filed under: Side dish


Hi! I’m Mike Vrobel. I’m a dad and an enthusiastic home cook; an indie cookbook author and food blogger with a day job, a patient spouse, and three kids who would rather have hamburgers for dinner.


  1. 1/4 cup is just an estimate; when I’m making salsa, I eyeball it. I grab what looks like a quarter cup of the cilantro bunch, rip it off, and toss it in the food processor.

  2. Hi Mike, your recipe calls for “1/4 cup of cilantro”, yet cilantro is sold in bunches. How do you translate that into cup volume (or any bunched herb, for that matter)?

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