Pico de Gallo | The Recipe Critic

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Pico de Gallo, also called salsa fresca, is a made-from-scratch salsa that is loaded with bold flavors from jalapeño, lime, cilantro, and juicy chunks of tomato and onion. It’s quick and easy to make, and you will be scraping the bottom of the bowl in no time!

I LOVE fresh salsa. It’s the thing I most look forward to when I eat out. But there’s no reason to wait for a special occasion, you can whip this easy dish up anytime! If you are a salsa lover, then you’ve got to try this easy Best Blender Salsa, this Slow Cooker Restaurant Style Garden Salsa, and this Restaurant style salsa too!

Bowl of pico de gallo.

What is Pico de Gallo?

Do you ever get so full from an appetizer that you aren’t even hungry when it comes time for the meal?  That is definitely a risk you take when making this incredible homemade pico!  This recipe creates such a fresh, vibrant, and chunky salsa!  Pico de Gallo is fresh salsa, all of the ingredients are bursting with flavor and combined with the juices of the tomato and lime. We love salsa at my house and are not afraid of a little spice. The jalapenos give this pico a little kick without being too much!

This is definitely the best salsa I have ever made, and one batch isn’t enough. I usually at LEAST double the recipe and set two bowls of it out. It is better than any restaurant pico I have had and I love that I can make it at home whenever I am craving it! It’s perfect on top of street tacos, inside burritos, with homemade air fryer tortilla chips, or alongside your chicken burrito bowl.


A good pico de gallo will usually always have the same basic ingredients. To be certain, those ingredients will always be fresh. Since there is no cooking involved, the raw ingredients will make or break your pico.  So, select the freshest ingredients possible!

  • Roma Tomatoes: Adds sweet and tangy flavor. You could use cherry tomatoes or plum tomatoes instead.
  • Onion: A white onion is the best in this salsa because of its sharp taste and slightly more tender texture.
  • Jalapeno: For a little spice!
  • Cilantro: A classic flavor in any delicious salsa!
  • Lime Juice: Adds a bit of acidity and bright fresh citrus flavor. You can use lemon juice if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Salt: To taste.
Ingredients for pico de gallo in a clear bowl.

Pico de Gallo Recipe

This is the BEST pico de Gallo recipe you’ll try. It’s quick and easy and so simple to make from scratch. In fact, this fresh salsa is ready in minutes. First, dice up your ingredients. Then add them all to the bowl and enjoy! It’s as simple as that, and the taste is out of this world delicious. The tomatoes and lime juice make the perfect sauce that is so yummy.

  1. Dice Ingredients: Tomatoes, onion, and jalapeno need to be diced evenly and roughly chop the cilantro.
  2. Combine ingredients: In a medium sized bowl combine tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, cilantro and juice of one lime. Add salt to taste.
  3. Serve!

Tips for Making Pico de Gallo

Pico de gallo is so chunky and flavorful! It’s also a recipe that you can change all the time to make it perfect for you. Here are a few different things you could try to switch things up.

  • Add Garlic:  Finely chop 1-2 cloves of garlic and add them to the pico. This definitely adds more flavor!
  • Fruit: Add in different types of fruit along with or instead of the tomato. I love mango, peaches, and pineapple!
  • Spice It Up: Leave a few seeds from the jalapeno in to increase the spice level to your preference. You could also use serrano peppers instead if you like them better.
  • Onion: Use a red onion instead of the white onion for more sweetness and crunch plus great color!
  • Texture: One thing I like to think about is the texture. Adding things like bell peppers and avocados is a great idea to switch things up. The peppers give it a great crunch and the avocado is so creamy.

Dipping a chip into fresh pico de gallo.

Storing Leftovers

The flavors of this pico de Gallo will get better as they sit and the juices come together.  Make this one or even two days ahead of time for the best flavors. The only problem is- when you smell the delicious fresh ingredients as you are mixing this pico together, you will find it is hard to wait!!

  • In the Refrigerator: Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.
  • In the Freezer: You can also freezer your leftovers in a freezer safe bag or container for up to 2 months.

  • In a medium sized bowl combine tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, cilantro and juice of one lime. Add salt to taste and serve!

Originally Posted June 26, 2020
Updated May 6, 2023

Serves: 8

Calories12kcal (1%)Carbohydrates3g (1%)Protein1g (2%)Fat1g (2%)Saturated Fat1g (5%)Sodium2mgPotassium94mg (3%)Fiber1g (4%)Sugar1g (1%)Vitamin A311IU (6%)Vitamin C7mg (8%)Calcium6mg (1%)Iron1mg (6%)

All nutritional information is based on third party calculations and is only an estimate. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods and portion sizes per household.

Course Appetizer, Side Dish, Snack

Cuisine Mexican

Keyword pico de gallo, pico de gallo salsa

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