Fresh Pico De Gallo Recipe

A recipe doesn't need to be complicated to be good. In fact, it doesn't even need to involve any cooking. If you're skeptical, look no further than recipe developer Jaime Shelbert's recipe for pico de gallo. Though it's made with only six ingredients (and that includes salt), this classic salsa is big on flavor. With components like spicy jalapeño pepper, zesty onion, tangy lime juice, and the polarizing herb cilantro, how could it not be?

"Pico is so good either eaten with tortilla chips, as a taco or taco salad topping, alongside quesadillas, or as a way to spice up grilled fish or chicken," Shelbert says. Plus, you don't need to turn on the stove, oven, or even air fryer for this no-cook recipe, which you'll be especially grateful for on those blisteringly hot summer days. Since pico is chunkier than most salsas, you also don't have to use a blender or any fancy tools. All this recipe requires is a knife, a cutting board, a few minutes, and some quality ingredients. You may never buy jarred salsa again!

Gather your pico de gallo ingredients

Pico de gallo doesn't have many ingredients, so it's important to make sure you have everything you need before you get started. Leave out one component, and the final product just won't be the same. This salsa is made with tomatoes, a yellow or white onion, lime juice, cilantro, salt, and jalapeño pepper. "Someone may opt to omit the jalapeño or add more depending on their heat preference," Shelbert notes.

Chop, chop, chop

The most time-consuming part of this recipe is the chopping. Start by deseeding and dicing the tomatoes, then dice the onion and jalapeño, taking care to remove the white ribs and seeds of the pepper. Finally, roughly chop the cilantro. Since this salsa is so minimal, you want every ingredient to be chopped nice and uniform, so you get a little of everything in each bite.

Combine the chopped ingredients

The hard work is over and the finish line is near. Put the chopped tomatoes, onion, cilantro, and jalapeño in a medium-size bowl, then add in the lime juice and salt. Give everything a good mix and taste it to see if it needs any adjustments, like more lime juice or salt.

You've made your very own pico

If you're not planning on enjoying your homemade pico ASAP, cover it and store it in the fridge. "Pico can be stored in an airtight container or a mason jar in the refrigerator for up to one week," Shelbert says. "You can make pico a day in advance and allow the flavors to sit and meld or you can serve immediately. It's delicious either way!"

If you do end up with leftover salsa but no more chips, you can use it in all kinds of creative and tasty ways. "Leftover pico is great stirred into black beans and rice or as a topping for scrambled eggs or breakfast burritos," Shelbert says. Pico may be simple, but it invites endless possibilities.

Fresh Pico De Gallo Recipe
4.9 from 36 ratings
Though it's made with only six ingredients, this fresh pico de gallo is big on flavor.
Prep Time
Cook Time
bowl of pico de gallo
Total time: 15 minutes
  • 3 medium tomatoes, deseeded and diced
  • ½ white or yellow onion, diced
  • 1 jalapeño, diced small
  • ¾ cup cilantro, loosely packed, roughly chopped
  • juice of 1 lime
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  1. Add the tomatoes, onion, jalapeño, and cilantro to a bowl. Stir to combine.
  2. Add the lime juice and salt to the salsa. Stir to combine, taste, and adjust seasonings as necessary.
  3. Serve the pico de gallo immediately or cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
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