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Salsa roja in stone molcajete with pepper garnish and tomato and pepper props
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5 from 2 votes

Salsa Roja

Authentic Mexican salsa roja made with simple ingredients
Course: Salsa
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: authentic Mexican salsa, red salsa, salsa roja
Servings: 2 cups


  • 5 roma tomatoes
  • 1-2 jalapenos or serranos *see note
  • ½ onion
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • cilantro optional
  • ¼-½ cup water **see notes
  • ½ tsp salt


  • Set oven to broil if broiling. ***See notes if roasting veggies stovetop in skillet.
  • Cut the tomatoes in half and the onion into quarters. Cut the jalapenos in half and scrape out seeds and veins if less spicy salsa desired.
  • Place everything on sheet pan, minus cilantro, and broil for about 3-5 minutes on each side. Check the veggies at 3 minutes to ensure they don't burn. You want a good char but not burnt veggies. Remove the garlic cloves do they don't burn. Flip veggies over and broil for another 3-5 minutes.
  • Place all of the veggies, (and cilantro if using), water, and salt in a food processor and process until desired consistency. I like to leave mine a little chunky. You can also use a blender and just pulse to blend to desired consistency. Adjust salt to taste.


*If using serrano peppers, start out with one as these can be spicier than jalapenos. 
**Use amount of water based on desired consistency. Less water = chunkier salsa.
***To roast veggies on stovetop use a cast iron skillet or griddle over high heat and place the veggies on it, roasting on each side for a few minutes until they're softened and slightly charred.