The Best Authetic Mexican Red Salsa (Salsa Roja)

This salsa is perfect on chicken, fish, or just to snack on some tostadas!



  • 6 medium sized tomatoes (I like to use Roma), whole, raw
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 onion, not diced, just whole half
  • 3 garlic cloves, peels on
  • 1 1/2 cups of water
  • 2 Guajillo dried chiles, tops removed and seeds shaken out
  • 1 New Mexico dried Chile, tops removed and seeds shaken out
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

In a skillet on medium heat, pour in the olive oil and coat pan. Place the whole tomatoes, onion and garlic cloves (with skin on) in the pan. Roast for about 20 minutes, turning frequently. Remove the garlic cloves once they are starting to blacken on the outsides and then remove skins. Remove the tomatoes and onion to a plate and don’t wash the pan yet.

Separately,  pour water into a small saucepan and add the guajillo and new mexico chiles. Bring heat to medium and let the chiles soften in the simmering water, about 10 minutes.

Place roasted tomatoes, onion, peeled garlic cloves, the the softened chiles into a blender. Add 1/4 cup of the water that the chiles were simmering in, or you can use regular water or chicken broth. Blend on high. Pour the salsa through a strainer and add it back to the skillet that you roasted the vegetables in. Salsa will look watery. Bring heat to medium high and stir. Add in the cumin, garlic powder, and salt. Stir and summer for about 10 minutes until salsa is thickened to your desired consistency and coats the back of a spoon. Taste and add a touch more salt if needed.

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