Simple classically homemade Pico De Gallo, with fresh tomatoes, cilantro, and red onions is a perfect everyday dip that takes almost no time at all to whip together. With only four main ingredients (plus a few fresh herbs and spices) it doesn’t take much to prep this super popular dip.
Warning: Double this Pico de Gallo batch because aside from an appetizing dip, salsa fresco is also perfect to serve on flautas, tortillas, tacos, enchiladas, and fish tacos!
Pico De Gallo Grocery List
The great thing about Mexican dips (or really any dips) is that so many of them can be customizable to make the flavors pop on what you love best. I personally enjoy lots of red onion, so if I am making for myself, I double that up and also add a few extra jalapenos for some spice. When I am making for my family, I keep it light and simple. The beauty is, once you have a base Pico de Gallo recipe, you can work from there.
Below are the ingredients. Please scroll to the bottom of the post for a printer-friendly version of this with full step-by-step instructions.
- fresh tomatoes – there really are so many tomato types and the goal is to make sure whatever kind of tomato you choose that its ripe. I like my tomatoes slightly firm but not pink.
- red onion
- jalapeno – seeds removed and diced
- fresh cilantro – if I can impart anything onto this Pico De Gallo recipe its this – do NOT substitute for dried cilantro!
- lime – FRESH FRESH FRESH. If you want that Mexican restaurant high quality taste, fresh lime matters.
Homemade Pico De Gallo
This easy pico de gallo salsa is a perfect homemade way to bring restaurant-quality food right into your kitchen with minor prep. In under 10 minutes, you can be munching away to an empty bowl. And with fresh tomatoes, diced onions, and a great blend of seasonings, your taste buds will thank you for learning how to make pico de gallo as well.
There are a lot of ways, with varying spices and levels of “heat” to enjoy salsas and Mexican foods in general. This recipe is SIMPLE, classic, and what you would expect. When you want to just get down the nitty-gritty of a simple authentic Pico De Gallo, this is it.
What is Pico De Gallo?
Homemade Pico De Gallo is a totally fresh and totally tasty way to get your vegetables and pretend what you are eating is healthy as you down all those tortilla chips….ok, all jokes aside, it’s a salsa Fresca! Who doesn’t love munching down on tomatoes and onions all day these fresh vegetable ingredients make it easy to push the guilt aside.
Pico De Gallo is also fantastic served right on tacos and enchiladas and comes with all the flavorings built right in, so do not be afraid to make this just as a topping for burrito pie, sour cream chicken enchiladas, or even on a beef tortilla casserole recipe.
How to make Simple Pico De Gallo
- This simple and easy recipe makes 3 cups of chunky Pico dip
- Mix fresh tomatoes, chopped onions, spicy jalapeno and fresh cilantro together in a mixing bowl.
- Add juice of lime and season well with salt and pepper.
- Mix all together so the juices marinate.
- Refrigerate covered for at least 4 hours or overnight to let flavors mingle and really pop on your taste buds. Yes, you can wait a minimal 15-30 minutes but try to give it an hour.
- Stir this dip well before serving to make sure there is no final settling.
- Went through all this trouble for homemade? Trust me when I say to learn how to make homemade tortilla chips. We make them ALL THE TIME now.
What is the best way to make the most of a fresh lime?
Use a lime squeezer to get the most out of your fresh lime with no juice wasted! If you do not have fresh limes or prefer to use lime juice out of a container (I also keep it in my fridge), juice of half of the lime is equivalent to about 1 tablespoon. Because lime tends to be a strong flavor, it’s ok to add half of that and taste test prior to adding more.
Red Onion or White Onion in Pico?
Truly onion type is a preference and I do love both. White onions tend to be sharper, have a bolder smell and taste and red onions, totally delicious raw, tend to be slightly sweeter. Because this is a chunky fresh pico over a fine pico, I find that the red onions taste better chunky and allow you to enjoy all the flavors while white is better when you are creating a fine salsa.
Chunky or Fine Cuts of Tomatoes?
This really is a personal preference of tomato salsas – I love the bold bursting flavors of keeping tomatoes, peppers, and onions diced so you get a really thick flavor, but cutting down to tiny bits is also very popular and common.
Oddly, the cut does make a difference in flavor so you can test out both and see how you prefer to dice and dip.
Pico? Salsa? Salsa Fresca??
Yep, this tomato salsa is known by so many names, but at the end of the day, it really is the chunkier version of a traditional and classic pureed down salsa, using fresh and simple ingredients. The main key here is to leave it all slightly chunky (but still enjoyable to eat!).
Make Pico De Gallo ahead of time for Best Flavor!
You can most definitely serve this one immediately but salsas and pico’s, (actually pretty much all dips) taste better cold and with a bit of time to mold the flavors together. When ingredients have time to marinate and sit, they become more of a medley of flavors versus individual ones.
Consider making this recipe a few hours ahead of time and serving up after a good mix.
What do you serve Pico De Gallo with?
There is a reason Pico is so popular in places like Chipotle and Moe’s- it can be served on top of just about anything. For a real treat, add to:
- Shrimp tacos
- Grilled chicken