Making a Meal Out of Salsa - Vegetarian Recipe

This time of year I love fresh salsa.  When I went up to the boarder of Canada and Minnesota to visit my sister in July, she made the most delicious salsa. This salsa was more filling than tomatoes, onion and peppers; it also had sweet corn, hearty black beans and creamy avocado. She was gracious enough to write the recipe down for me, which I than promptly lost. 

Last night at six o'clock it was still 90 degrees in the kitchen so instead of turning on the oven or stove I got out the cutting board and made this delicious meal. It's pretty darn close to what my sister made.  I adlibbed a bit.  I think she had even more tomatoes. 

Make a Meal out of it Salsa
8 fresh tomatoes
1 can of black beans drained and rinsed (or 2 cups of rehydrated dried beans)
2 avocados
2 cups corn kernels (I used frozen)
1 onion
5 cloves of garlic
1 jalapeno
1 cup of cilantro leaves
1 lime's worth of juice
The short version of the recipe would be chop everything and put it in a bowl.  However, there are some parts that could use a little more finesse than that.  So here's the long version of the directions:
  1. Start by getting out a really big bowl and spoon.  I used our biggest mixing bowl.  This will make your life easier as there are a lot of ingredients to mix and you'll need the room.  Then get out your largest cutting board for the same reason.

  2. Dice the onion and then taste it.  If it is really peppery throw it in a colander and rinse it with cool water.  You'll be surprised how much of the bite will be taken out.   Allow the onions to drip for a while before adding them to the big bowl. 
  3. Next dice up the tomatoes.  Put the diced tomatoes into a colander and toss with a little bit of salt (1/2 teaspoon or so) this will help drain off the extra juice so you don't have sloppy salsa.  No one wants to dip their chips into the liquid pooling at the bottom of the bowl.  I like to drink the juice. It's delicious. 

  4. Before you mince it, taste your jalapeno.  If it is really hot, take the seeds out. If it is not spicy enough keep the seeds.  (At the end you can always add some powdered cayenne pepper to heat up the spiciness to your taste.)  Mince the garlic and jalapeno and add it to the bowl along with the beans and corn.  Toss as your ingredients so the flavors start to meld together.
  5. Clean the cilantro by taking the leaves off the stem and removing any wilted or yellow bits. Rough chop the leaves and add them to the bowl.
  6. Add the drained tomatoes.  The last step is to dice the avocado and add it in with the lime juice.  You want to add the avocado last because it's soft.  Give the mixture one last gentle mix to combine everything and you are ready to serve!
This makes tons which is great for a party or be like us and make it into a meal.  All I added was some Baked Tostitos Scoops.  This is not a paid advertisement. Tostitos has no idea who I am.  I just like having a high ratio of salsa to chip and the Scoops make that possible.  And I liked that they are baked. 

This salsa is even better the next day!  I'm not sure about the day after that, as it didn't last more than two days. 

Jeff and I both thought it would also be good as a pasta salad.  Simply toss some whole wheat rotini in there and skip the tortilla chips.  Of course that would involve boiling water on the stove so perhaps I'll save that for a cooler evening.


  1. This looks delicious. I could definitely make a meal out of this. Yum!

  2. I love all of the ingredients in the salsa, definitely a whole meal with chips or pasta. Most Friday nights we have guacamole with chips and browned ground turkey for dinnet. That's what we're having tonight:)

  3. This is a great salsa recipe. A meal in itself or one great side

  4. I make a very similar recipe and LOVE eating salsa as a meal! Love your tips about rinsing the onion and such.

  5. What a great recipe! I could live on salsa!

  6. When a salsa has that many nutritious ingredients, one doesn't have to feel bad about the three beers consumed while knoshing the entire bowl. ;-)

  7. Would make a great tailgating dish-

  8. Looks delicious! I made a similar salsa a few weeks ago and it was my meal several times during the week ;)

  9. Beautiful! Great colors and it looks so fresh!

  10. Anonymous9/03/2011

    I LOVE salsa! This is a great recipe and I got a chuckle out of your long and short directions! Buzzed!

  11. A fabulous looking salsa that takes advantage of all the fresh produce...I wish I could taste it right now!

  12. Looks fantastic...nothing beats fresh salsa!!

    Just found you through FoodBuzz! :-)

  13. Boy does that look good. I have to buy avocados and then I have the rest of the ingredients. Yum. I love salsa on almost anything. It is so fresh and delicious.

  14. Looks lovely, I make all of my own salsas now and will never go back to premade! I bet it would be super tasty in a tortilla!

  15. I seem to always be able to make a meal out of salsa. This, however, looks much healthier than the normal salsa fare. Thanks!

  16. Love this!! As a salsa fiend I'm going to have to try this - though I'll probably end up skipping the chips and just eating it with a spoon:)