How to make the Best Salsa on a budget!


How to make the Best Salsa on a budget!

Planning a 4th of July party? Here are some easy steps to make the best salsa on a budget.  This “Bangin’ Salsa” recipe is  best salsa I’ve ever tasted, hands down.

If you can’t take the heat however, just eliminate some of the peppers.  I did this very thing when recreating it at home so that it would be more family friendly.  For example, my brother-in-law’s recipe calls for 5 big jalapeno’s, 8 Serrano, and 1 chili peppers.  Where I was shopping for ingredients, they didn’t even have the Serrano.  Whatever.  Use what you have access to.  We made a 1/2 recipe, which would adjust the recipe to 2.5 jalapeno, 4 Serrano, and .5 Chili peppers.


To lessen the heat, I used 3 jalapenos seeded, and 2 large Anaheim peppers (mild heat), seeds remaining.  When I first tasted the salsa, it seemed like there was very little heat, if any at all.  So, we kicked it up with a little cayenne and crushed red pepper…just enough to give it a little kick.  We were mindful of not adding too much ‘punch’ right off the bat though, knowing that as the salsa sat, those peppers would marinate in the juices, and it’s heat would continue to grow.  It ended up just right, and all of the children were able to enjoy it along with us.This is a very spicy recipe but the changes I made for a family friendly version are in red alongside the recipe.


    • 2.5 lbs. tomatoes
    • green, yellow, and orange pepper (red, yellow, and orange peppers), sliced in small pieces of all sizes and shapes.  You don’t want it looking like a machine made your salsa!
    • 1 bunch green onions, sliced thin
    • 1.5 red onion, chopped small
    • 2.5  jalapeno peppers (3 jalapeno peppers, seeded)   
    • Serrano peppers  (2 large Anaheim peppers)                   
    • 1 chili pepper  (didn’t use any)
    • 2 cloves FRESH garlic, chopped as fine as possible, or crushed in a press
    • 1 bunch of cilantro, chopped super fine  🙂
    • 4 limes, quartered
    • 1 lemon, quartered

I use the Totally Bamboo 20-7930 3-Piece Cutting Board Set to cut all my veggies. I love the strudiness, however, never put them in the dishwasher.


1.  Chop tomatoes and toss in a colander in the sink.  Using your fist, begin to crush the tomatoes slightly to expel a bit of the juice.  They will continue to juice as they sit, so draining them a little this way in the beginning just keeps the salsa from getting too watery later.  Transfer to a large mixing bowl.

2.  “Keep in mind that this recipe is as much about looks as anything else.”  If it looks like you need more of something, add it.  If it’s beginning to look like you already have plenty of something, trust your instincts.  From now on, whenever you add a new ingredient, stir it up.  “It’s about the diversity of color in the bowl.”  Now…Toss in the peppers.  Stir.

3.  Add the green onion.  Stir.

4.  Mix in the red onion.  Stir.

5. Cut the peppers into “coins”.  This works great for the non-seeded peppers.  When you want to seed a few though, “coining” doesn’t work so hot.  In that case, just cut them in whatever size looks good to you after seeding.  Just remember that the smaller you piece them, the more intense your heat will be later on.

6.  Add garlic.  Stir.

7.  Add cilantro.  Stir.

8.  Squeeze the lime and lemon juice into the mixture.  I used a garlic press to squeeze additional juice from my limes and lemons.

9.  “Snowcap” the salsa with salt.  Stir.  “Snowcap” it again.  Stir.  “Snowcap” is Chris lingo for cover it in salt.  Repeat the process with the pepper.

10.  Here’s where we added a smidge of cayenne and a sprinkling of crushed red pepper, Hey!

“Bam!  Go to town & eat it!”

Looking for more recipes?  See what else we’ve been cooking at Bucktown Bargains!



About Jenna Urban

Jenna is a trusted community resource for helping families live a better life on a budget and specialize in finding the best online deals, using coupons efficiently and living a frugal lifestyle.

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