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homemade salsa roja

Salsa Roja

Salsa Roja is a smokey and flavorful sauce made from red chiles and roasted vegetables. This mildly spicy salsa recipe is a favorite with Mexican cuisine.
Course Side Dish
Cuisine Mexican
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Servings 4 servings
Calories 84


  • 1 dried New Mexican red chile pod (stemmed and seeded)
  • 1 dried ancho chile pod (stemmed and seeded)
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano (preferably Mexican)
  • 2 tomatoes (quartered (roma or plum))
  • ½ medium white onion (sliced)
  • ½ jalapeno (stemmed and seeded)
  • 2 large garlic cloves (smashed)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon Kosher salt
  • ½ tablespoon ground pepper (freshly ground)
  • 4 sprigs cilantro (stems removed)


  • Tear all the chiles into large pieces and toast them in a large dry skillet over low heat until they start to brown, turning regularly to prevent burning, about 2 minutes. Add the oregano and continue to toast for 2 to 3 minutes until everything is fragrant. Remove from heat and cover chiles with boiling water. Weigh down with a small plate to keep them submerged. Soak until soft, at least 10 minutes. Strain and cool.
  • Preheat the broiler. Put the quartered tomatoes, sliced onion, jalapeno, and whole garlic cloves onto a parchment lined baking sheet in a single layer. Drizzle with plenty of olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Broil until everything begins to char, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven.
  • Place roasted vegetables, strained chile peppers, and fresh cilantro in blender and purée until smooth. Add additional salt, if desired. Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.


Make about 1 cup. Easy to double recipe if more is needed.


Calories: 84kcal | Carbohydrates: 5g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 296mg | Potassium: 187mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 2g | Vitamin A: 680IU | Vitamin C: 13.3mg | Calcium: 19mg | Iron: 0.3mg