This post is designed to share tips on how to make salsa that is safe to can at your home. This recipe is from a book I purchased at the Utah State Extension service, it’s called the USDA Complete Guide To Home Canning. Here’s the link: USDA Complete Guide To Canning Guide. I had so many tomatoes in my garden that I wanted to share this salsa recipe with you.
This salsa is amazing, not too spicy but just enough kick to enjoy eating it with chips or on tacos! Please remember after canning any food items, once they are cooled, remove the rings. We need to do this in case a jar “Pops” and then goes back down. These jars would not be safe to eat.
How To Make Salsa That Is Safe To Can
I used rubber gloves to cut and seed the chilies and peppers. I must say, my eyes were watering when I was chopping up these peppers. I quickly switched to the hand chopper shown below over me chopping them with a knife. I used it to chop the onions as well. I kept my gloves on the entire time until all the ingredients were placed into the large pot.
Next, you combine all the ingredients (recipe is below) into a large pot and bring it to a full rolling boil. Then turn the heat down to simmer for 20 minutes. Wash and boil the pint jars you are going to use and have them hot and ready to fill. I put my lids with the gaskets separated into a pot of boiling water to keep them hot and ready to place on the filled jars.
According to the USDA Complete Guide To Canning, they recommend only buying enough lids that you will use within one year. They do mention that the lids should last five years from the date of purchase, but it’s best to only buy what you will use in one year. Just giving you heads up here from the experts.
One thing you want to do after filling your jars is to remove any excess air bubbles by running a silicone (I use silicone) skinny spatula around the inside of the outer edge of the jars. Next, use a clean damp cloth to clean the rims of the jars and place a lid onto the jar. You will then screw a ring on the lid on the jar. You will tighten the rings, but do not over tighten them.
Then you place the filled jars into the canner rack and lower the hot-filled jars into the water. Make sure the water is 1-2 inches above the top of the jars. You need one inch for 20 minutes of canning. You need 2 inches above the jars for 30 minutes of canning or more. Place the lid on the pot and bring to a rolling boil. The time it takes will depend on your altitude. Here in Southern Utah, I processed them for 20 minutes AFTER the pot came to a rolling boil.
After processing, I turned off the heat source and lifted the jars out of the water. I let them sit above the water for 5 minutes before using gripper tongs to lift them out of the water. I placed the hot jars on a cooling rack. I waited a few minutes to hear that wonderful sound of popping that means they all sealed correctly. These are the gripper tongs I like to use: Ball® Secure-Grip Jar Lifter (by Jarden Home Brands)
I left the hot jars on the cooling rack overnight and then removed the rings from the jars to store in the pantry. There is something awesome about canning your own salsa using your own tomatoes from the garden. Love it!
The next night we had company from out of town for dinner, and of course, I had to serve tacos with my homemade salsa. That’s what we do, right?
Tomato Salsa (using slicing tomatoes) USDA Recipe
- 4 cups peeled (cored, chopped tomatoes)
- 2 cups seeded (chopped long green chilies)
- ½ cup seeded (chopped jalapenos)
- ¾ cup chopped onions
- 4 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
- 2 cups vinegar (5% acidity)
- 1 tsp ground cumin (optional)
- 1 tbsp oregano leaves (optional)
- 1 tbsp fresh cilantro
- 1-1/2 Tsp salt
Procedure: Wear rubber gloves to cut and prepare the long green chilies and jalapenos. I remove the seeds. Wash tomatoes and dip in boiling water for 30 to 60 seconds or until skins split. Dip each tomato into cold water, slip off skins, and remove cores. Combine all ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. reduce heat and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Fill hot salsa into hot pint jars, leaving ½ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles and adjust headspace if needed. Wipe rims of jars with a dampened clean towel. Adjust lids and process.
Remove The Rings After Canning
When I was growing up my mother always removed the rings after canning. So I did the same thing. It wasn’t until I took 12 weeks of classes at my Master Canner, Preserver class that I learned why we need to remove them. If by chance a bottle lid “lifts” we may not realize that if it reseals (months later) because the ring is on it. It would be dangerous to consume if it does.