A Versatile Recipe Passed Down by Generations, Perfect for Preserving Your Last Harvest

Hi everyone I know canning can be a daunting task! I’m here to show you how easy it can be! I’m not a fancy cook and like to keep things simple. Also I hate following recipes so having to write one down is a task for me if you know what I mean.  I’m so used to whining it while cooking.

Today I’m sharing about our seasons last tomato harvest! Preserving the bounty of your last harvest can be a fun, especially when you have a cherished recipe passed down through the generations. My mother-in-law’s treasured canning salsa recipe, which is perfect for utilizing green tomatoes and ensures you have a taste of summer all year long. My hubby comes from a family of 12 kiddos so shes had here fair share of recipe trials and I kid you not here stuff is good!

Here’s a quick video of the canning process –


The Green Tomato Advantage

Now this work with both red or green tomatoes however… using green tomatoes in your salsa recipe offers a unique advantage—no peeling required. Unlike red tomatoes, One of the advantages of using green tomatoes in your salsa recipe is that you generally don’t need to peel the skins. Green tomato skins tend to blend well during cooking and blending, resulting in a smoother and flavorful salsa. Unlike red tomatoes, where the skin can be more noticeable and might need to be removed for a smoother texture, green tomatoes can be used with their skins intact.

This not only simplifies the canning process but also adds a unique texture to your salsa. So, when making salsa with green tomatoes, you can typically leave the skins on and enjoy the extra flavor and convenience they offer.

Another fun fact! Green tomatoes give you salsa a beautiful tart flavor. You won’t even need to add lime or citrus to give it a tangy flavor! AWESOME RIGHT!

So go ahead and rip those green tomatoes! Making salsa with them is a breeze!

Here’s a photo of my last harvest of the season. I got about 66 tomatoes, mostly green. I think this  was roughly 3/4 of a bucket.


Before diving into the recipe, Let’s go over the different canning methods available. Some popular options include hot water bath canning and pressure canning. I don’t own any fancy kitchen gadgets or giant pots so I’ll be showing you how my family has done it over the years! It’s much simpler and way easier!

You need to make sure the jars are hot, pour in the boiling salsa, then immediately seal the jars. THAT’S ALL there is to it! When done correctly, this method preserves the salsa for about 1 year to 18 months. You’ll know if the canning was successful by checking if the lids have sealed properly. If not, refrigerate and consume within two weeks. With my last batch, I did ten pint jars, and all of them sealed perfectly. The key to successful canning is ensuring the neck of the jar is clean before sealing. This method has been tried and true, passed down through generations, from my great-grandma to my mother-in-law. If you are concerned and aren’t sure about this method you can also boil the can salsa in a hot bath for an additional 15 minutes. 

Keep in mind this method doesn’t work for everything you can. I can my jams like this and broth.  I do not can stuff like meets, pickles , whole tomatoes etc like this. We use a different method. Let me know I can share more about it. Also no special kitchen gadgets needed.

The Recipe!


Salsa Recipe for Canning


  • 5 gallons tomatoes ( green or red )
  • 6-8 red bell peppers
  • 5-7 jalapenos
  • 3 sticks celery
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 5-6 onions
  • 6 tbsp salt
  • 3 tbsp sugar


  • Chop the tomatoes into large pieces and start cooking them on medium heat. Add a bit of oil to the bottom of the pot to prevent sticking. As the tomatoes release their juices, keep stirring.
  • If you're using red tomatoes you'll need to peel the skins. Trust me when I tell you there's just no way around this. Your salsa will not taste good if not peeled. It's super easy. Score your tomatoes with a knife in and X shape and leave them in a boiling water bath for a few minutes. Then transfer them into ice water to cool. The peel should slide right off!
  • Chop the celery, jalapeño, and add them to the pot. Add Salt and Sugar
  • Use a hand blender to achieve a smooth consistency. Let it boil for 30 minutes
  • Add the chopped onion, bell peppers, and cilantro. Let it cook for an additional 15 minutes.
  • Rinse your jars and wipe down the lids. Microwave the wet jars for 4-5 minutes.
  • For the canning process, ensure your salsa is boiling, remove a hot jar from the microwave using a towel, and place it on your work surface that has a towel layed out. It's important not to let the hot jar touch anything cold during the process and after you've sealed it until it cools off. Use a scoop or ladle to fill the hot jar with salsa, making sure the rim is clean before sealing it. It's ok if you get drips on the edges just be sure to wipe it clean before sealing. Don't let the others jars in the microwave cool off. I usually heat them again for 30 seconds before pulling one out.
  • Set the sealed jars aside, and within the next 25 minutes, they should seal. You'll know they've sealed when you push on the lid at the top in the center and don't hear a popping sound or see it pop. It should get sucked in from the pressure..


If using green tomatoes the salsa will taste very tart. You might need to add more salt and sugar to balance out the flavors.  You'll know you've added enough when the slightly bitter taste is gone and it just taste sour.

That’s it!I hope you enjoy this delicious recipe! Wait at least two weeks before eating. Best eaten after two months.

Don’t forget to refer to the video for easy instructions if you’re ever in doubt.

Keep in mind if you use all green tomatoes your salsa may vary in color. However adding in the red bell pepper will help bring back some of the red color in the salsa. 


You can add more jalapenos for a spicy flavor. This recipe is very mild. For a spicy salsa I would probably do about 10 jalapenos.

A few things I should mention. If you choose to chop your jalapeno and add it in instead of blending it you won’t taste how spicy your salsa is right away. It’ll be a few months before the seeds diffuse the spice into your salsa.  How do I know?? LOL because I’ve done this and was wondering why my salsa wasn’t spicy at all right away.

Be sure not to remove the seeds that’s what gives it the kick. If you remove the seeds it almost gives no spice at all. I tried that too 🙁 .

I hope this helps preserve your last harvest! The flavors are so bright you can taste summer tomatoes in a jar all year long!


  • Serve with fried eggs for breakfast!
  • Serve with savory crepes! ( this is our favorite) Let me know if you’d like a recipe!
  • Serve with chicken burritos  – lime and avocado flavored! ( also our fav)
  • Serve with grilled chicken and white rice!

SO many more ideas but hopefully this gives you a jump start! 

I love easy recipes and struggle with going out of my way to make specific things! I try and do with what I have usually. Using stuff I have in the fridge. You can tweak the recipe according to what you have. I’ve done this without bell peppers or celery before and it still tastes amazing! Hoping I made this as easy as possible for you. Us moms are busy! Sharing all the tips I can to make life easier for you! Love you all! See you next time! And if you’re totally new to canning maybe this will give you the courage to can some salsa!  And if you have a ton of green tomatoes here we go! The best salsa you’ll ever try!





EASY BAKED POTATOES !  ( chop and bake – ONE DISH MEAL )


*disclosure. Please do everything from my blog with caution. None of my Posts, recipes, or DIYS should be taken instead of expert advice. I simply share what works for our family and hope you enjoy and find it helpful.