Canning Restaurant Style Salsa

Appetizers and Snacks, Mexican, Preserving | 14 comments

I sure did enjoy that Restaurant Style Salsa that I posted about a few weeks ago! So much that I played around with the recipe a little bit so that I could can some of that salsa to have on the shelves. Not that the original recipe is complicated, but it’s nice to have some that is already ready to go and it was fun to refresh myself on canning because I hadn’t done any so far this year.

canning salsa

I was recently browsing books when the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving caught my eye in the bookstore. I don’t own any canning or home preserving books so I picked up a copy. This book is such a great resource! I had already converted this recipe for Restaurant Style Salsa to a water bath canning recipe, but I wanted to do more.

Since I’ve gotten this book I’ve canned some Homemade Pear Butter because pears were on sale for 50 cents/lb. I’ll post about that recipe later, but it is GOOD. I’ve got so many recipes marked in the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving book that I want to try. It’s a great resource and it really makes home canning feel less overwhelming.

Back to the salsa…I was asked to do a little tutorial on some salsa canning basics for a church activity. Attendees were asked to bring salsa they’ve made fresh or canned to share for refreshments after the activity. I was pleased to see that the salsa I brought (this recipe) was the first one gone. I kept hearing people ask “which one is Katie’s??” That sure makes a girl feel good!

I don’t want to overwhelm you with too many details of the canning process in this post, so I’m just providing basic instructions. I highly recommend that you get a copy of the Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving if you’re serious about learning how to can. I also recommend this Ball Canning Utensil Set. The set includes a funnel, jar lifter, lid lifer, and head-space measuring tool.

Canning Restaurant Style Salsa

adapted from Restaurant Style Salsa
makes approximately 6 pints

Print Save Recipe


2 - 28 ounce can Whole Tomatoes With Juice
2 - 10 ounce can Rotel Original (diced Tomatoes And Green Chilies)
2 - 10 ounce cans Rotel Mexican (diced Tomatoes with Lime and Cilantro)
1/4 cup tomato paste
2 cups Yellow Onion
3 cloves Garlic
2-4 whole Jalapenos, halved (seeds removed for milder salsa)
1/2 teaspoon Sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon Salt
2 teaspoons Ground Cumin
1 cup Fresh Cilantro Leaves
1/2 cup lime juice (do not use less than this if you are water bath canning; use more if you like)


Prepare canner, jars, and lids according to canning guide.

Combine whole tomatoes, Rotel, paste, onion, jalapeno, garlic, sugar, salt, cumin, lime juice, and cilantro in a blender or food processor. Pulse until you get the salsa to the consistency you’d like—about 10 to 15 pulses. Test seasonings with a tortilla chip and adjust as needed.

Add all ingredients to a stock pot. Bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat and boil gently, stirring frequently until slightly thickened, about 15 minutes.

Ladle hot salsa into clean, warm jars, leaving about 1/2 inch headspace. Remove any air bubbles and adjust headspace, if necessary, by adding additional hot salsa. Wipe rim with a clean towel. Center the sterilized lid on jar. Screw band down until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.

Place jars in canner, ensuring they are completely covered with water. Bring to a boil and process pint jars for 20 minutes. Remove canner lid. Wait 5 minutes, then remove jars, cool and store.

Salsa Canning Tips:

  • Do not reduce the amount of lemon juice or tomatoes.
  • Do not add extra peppers, onion, or garlic. You can reduce the amount of peppers, onion, or garlic.
  • Canned chilies may be used in place of fresh.
  • You can substitute one type of pepper for another. For example, hot jalapeno peppers, bell peppers, yellow peppers, banana peppers, chili peppers may all be substituted 1:1.
  • The key is not increasing the amount of low acid ingredients in relation to the amount of high acid ingredients
  • Wear gloves while handling jalapenos and peppers. Don't touch your face until you have washed your hands.

Katie Goodman

About the Author:

Katie’s lifelong interest in cooking good food has shown her that part of the goodness in life is enjoying delicious food with friends and family. She is: Mom. Writer. Photographer. Recipe Developer. Website Founder. Lover of all things good in life. A mix of great recipes, family memories, and yummy photography is what Katie serves up each week at GoodLife Eats™. Katie and her family reside in Colorado.

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  • 1
    deb - October 01, 2010 @ 7:41 am

    I’ve been looking for a good salsa recipe. Thanks for sharing :)


  • 2
    Aimee @ Simple Bites - October 01, 2010 @ 7:42 am

    Way to get your can on, Katie! I sure would feel better about having a few jars of this stashed on my pantry!


  • 3
    Melody - October 01, 2010 @ 4:22 pm

    And no vinegar! I’m so trying this! Thanks for doing all the “tweaking” because I love the original too.


  • 4
    Robyn - October 03, 2010 @ 2:30 pm

    Love homemade salsa and can’t wait to try this recipe. I’m sure it is delicious!


  • 5
    Deidra - October 07, 2010 @ 2:31 pm

    I’m a bit obsessed with canning and have this cookbook, but started with the Ball Blue Book of Canning first. Our local extension office sells them for pretty cheap. It’s a good way to get into canning with a thorough introduction, but not quite as overwhelming as the Complete Book. And it’s always smart to can tested recipes so you know your food is safe!


  • 6
    Amanda - October 09, 2010 @ 11:00 am

    Is it okay to re-can tomatoes since they have already been canned once when you buy them? Thanks!


  • 7
    Jenna - October 10, 2010 @ 6:16 pm

    I just made this salsa tonight! I am a beginning canner and I followed your directions exactly. Thanks for the inspiration! All the jars sealed and I can’t wait to give this out for holiday gifts this year. I’m also excited to share this recipe/tutorial with the other ladies of my church!


  • 8
    HolleyV - August 31, 2011 @ 7:42 am

    I love your fresh recipe so I definitely want to try this! Do you know if I can substitute with making my own Rotel-type tomatoes with fresh tomatoes?


    • Katie Goodman

      Katie replied: — August 31st, 2011 @ 9:54 AM

      I don’t see why not, but if you have a canning book such as Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving I would refer to that just to double check.

  • 9
    Jessalyn - December 04, 2011 @ 11:46 am

    Hi, Katie! We love PW’s restaurant salsa and I am planning to can this recipe to give out for Christmas gifts. Is it ok to substitute a white onion for the yellow? We generally use the white when we make it. Thanks!


    • Katie Goodman

      Katie replied: — December 4th, 2011 @ 3:10 PM

      Yes, that is fine!

  • 10
    Denise - July 12, 2012 @ 6:29 am

    If I were to use fresh tomatoes how many would I use for this recipe to substitute for the regular tomatoes and the rotel? I have a garden and plenty of fresh tomatoes and jalepeno’s on hand.


    • Katie Goodman

      Katie replied: — July 12th, 2012 @ 2:18 PM

      Sorry, I can’t comment on that because I have not tried those substitutions before. I recommend consulting Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving for canning recipes using garden fresh tomatoes.

  • 11
    Kerry - September 20, 2012 @ 11:52 am

    What I need is a recipe for a ‘pressure cooker canner’. I’ve been looking everywhere for a ‘salsa’ recipe for this machine and can’t find one…I can’t find a table that converts time from water bath to pressure cooker either. (Also please could you put your recipe with fresh tomatoes!


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