Roasted Tomato Salsa Roja is a delicious, quick, and easy salsa made from scratch. Make this in 15 minutes the next time you eat tacos, pupusas, or chips and salsa.Jump to Recipe
What is Roja?
You can find salsa roja in Latin American cuisine. You can prepare it many different ways. It's made roasted or raw. It can also be spicy or mild. Make it traditionally using a Molcajete, a type of mortar and pestal. Today we can make it using any type of food processor or blender.
Ingredients for Roasted Tomato Salsa
Ingredients for this recipe are easy. Feel free to adapt to the produce you can find in your market. I use high quality Roma tomatoes or 4x4 tomatoes the ones you would find on a a sandwich.
Next for the peppers I use jalapeños, but you can use any dried or fresh chili depending on your spice level. This recipe is pretty mild for a spice lover, but if you can't handle spicy foods then deseed your peppers first.
How to make Roasted Tomato Salsa Roja
Preheat the oven to broil on high. Set a rack in the oven to the highest position.
First Gather your ingredients. Next wash your tomatoes, jalapeño, scallions, and cilantro.
If using Romas quarter them. Alternately if you are using bigger tomatoes, cut them into quarters and remove the green stem. Cut your jalapeño in half. Wash the scallions and remove any dead pieces. Add 2 tablespoons of oil and thoroughly coat. Season with salt and pepper.
Place on a sheet tray. You want to use a sheet tray or vessel that can withstand the heat of the broiler. Make sure its small enough to where the ingredients are all packed in. This is to make sure they don't get charred too quickly. When placed together they will release enough moisture to cook slightly while the tops get a great charred roasted flavor.
Broil on high for 8-10 minutes. The tops of everything are charred heavily and the tomatoes release juice and soften. Be careful at this stage because they will go from under cooked to over cooked very quickly. This recipe is resilient and forgiving. If you forget about it for an extra minute you will have extra char.
Remove everything from the oven when the ingredients are slightly charred. Add a handful of cilantro sprigs.
Transfer everything to a blender, or food processor along with two teaspoons of distilled white vinegar. Feel free to substitute the juice of 1-2 limes instead.
Whats the best blender?
My entire professional career I've used a Vitamix. It is the holy grail of blenders and the ONLY thing that will get that luxurious fine-dining ultra smooth purees. But at home they're pretty unpractical. They are very expensive, they take up a ton of space, and you need large restaurant quantities to get the blade to spin correctly.
I like to use a nutribullet, it's something I learned about while cooking on tour. It takes up minimal space. It's super easy to use and clean, and more than enough heavy duty for home use.
Blend everything together until smooth.
Enjoy your roasted tomato salsa!
Serve it with pupusas revueltas!
Roasted Tomato Salsa Roja
- sheet tray
- blender or food processor
- 6 ea roma tomatoes or 4ea larger tomatoes
- 2 ea scallions cleaned and trimmed of any dead pieces
- 1 ea jalepeno
- 2 tsp white distilled vinegar OR juice of 1-2 limes
- 6 sprigs cilantro
- 1 tbsp oil
- Preheat the oven to broil on high. Set the oven rack to the highest position.
- Wash all of your vegetables.
- Cut the tomatoes in quarters or smaller depending on the size of the tomato. Cut the jalepeno in half. cut the scallions into long 6-8" sections.
- Combine the tomatoes, scallions, and jalepenos and coat with the oil. Season everything lightly with salt and pepper.
- Broil everything on a sheet pan or oven proof dish, for 8-10 minutes or until the top of the tomatoes are slightly charred. Be careful and watch the oven closely as it they will go from charred to burnt very quickly. The good thing is that if you get too much char it will still taste great.
- Remove from the oven. Combine with 6 sprigs of cilantro and 2 teaspoons of vinegar. Blend in a blender until smooth.