Building blocks, Side dish, Sponsored
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Tomato and Pumpkin Seed Salsa

Tomato and Pumpkin Seed Salsa

Tomato and Pumpkin Seed Salsa

FSTG LogoThis week, DadCooksDinner is sponsored by Food Should Taste Good Tortilla Chips. Why do I like having Food Should Taste Good as a sponsor? Because they know food tastes best when it’s made with real ingredients, and their Tortilla Chips are wholesome snacks that deliver on great taste, with real, simple ingredients. They are perfect for Cinco de Mayo entertaining. For more information, visit

Food Should Taste Good asked me for a Cinco de Mayo recipe to go with their Tortilla Chips; of course, salsa immediately jumped to mind. (Followed quickly by thoughts of frozen margaritas – see Tuesday’s recipe.)

Why pumpkin seeds in salsa? Pumpkin seeds, pipián or pepitas in Spanish, are a popular ingredient in Mexico. They add a meaty, roasted taste, and blending them with the tomatoes helps thicken up the salsa. This recipe is loosely based on sikil p’ak, Yucatan’s pumpkin-seed dip, but this recipe is a lot more tomato-heavy than you would find in the Yucatan. (And they would use habaneros instead of jalapenos. They love the heat in the Yucatan.)2

Pumpkin seeds used to be hard to find in my area, but now I see them in the bulk section of my local grocery stores. (If you’re having a hard time, check out your local health food store.) I buy the pumpkin seeds roasted and salted, because it makes this a quick pantry recipe; dump everything in the food processor and puree. If you can only find raw, unsalted pumpkin seeds, that’s fine – toast them in a skillet over medium heat until they are just browned in spots, then dump them in the food processor.

About those chips…
I came home to a big box of chips from Food Should Taste Good. That’s when the kids started circling. Normally, when I say “It’s for the blog”, they wander away. Now they won’t leave me alone. “Dad, can we eat the chips? When can we eat the chips? How about now, can we eat the chips?” Not until I get pictures! Back off you vultures! I go get my camera, and when I come back, one of them is going through the box. “I’m not eating them! I’m just checking what flavors you have.”

I made the salsa, took my pictures, and then unleashed the ravenous horde, with a last minute request: “Taste test – what’s your favorite chip?” Mine is the Blue Corn Tortilla Chip, because I’m a traditionalist – I like the big corn flavor, with a hint of sesame. The rest of my tasting panel voted for Lime, Multigrain, and (much to my surprise), two votes for Guacamole. Why the Guacamole Tortilla Chips? According to one voter: “Because they’re spicy. I like spicy.”


Recipe: Tomato and Pumpkin Seed Salsa

Inspired by La Parilla: The Mexican Grill by Reed Hearon



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Tomato and Pumpkin Seed Salsa

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


Tomato and Pumpkin Seed Salsa recipe – tomato salsa thickened with pepitas makes a great chip dip.



  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 2 jalapeño chiles, stemmed and seeded
  • 1/2 cup roasted pumpkin seeds
  • 28-ounce can fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Salt to taste (if needed)
  • Food Should Taste Good Tortilla Chips
  • Frozen margaritas (optional…but highly recommended.)


  1. Mince the garlic and jalapeños: Drop the garlic cloves and jalapeños through the feed tube into a running food processor or blender. Let them process until completely minced, about 1 minute.
  2. Blend the salsa: Add the pumpkin seeds, fire roasted diced tomatoes, and lime juice to the processor or blender. Process until completely smooth, about 30 seconds. Taste and add salt if needed. (The amount of salt will depend on your pumpkin seeds and tomatoes; I get roasted, salted pumpkin seeds, and I don’t need to add more salt.)

  • Category: Side dish
  • Cuisine: Mexican





Garlic and jalapeno, completely minced.

Garlic and jalapeno, completely minced


Salsa is ready!

Salsa is ready!


Dig in

Dig in


What do you think?

Questions? Other ideas? Leave them in the comments section below.

Quick Red Salsa
Grilled Tomato and Tomatillo Salsa
Guacamole Salsa


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Filed under: Building blocks, Side dish, Sponsored


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. Barbara says

    I have a question. How long will this salsa keep in the refrigerator? Not that it sounds like it’ll last very long after you put it out for the crowd!

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