Salsa, people. The answer is salsa.
Rainbow Salsa image
Rainbow Salsa image
| Credit: Time Inc. Video Studio

I’ll be the first to admit, I’m kind of (read: so incredibly) over the excessive rainbow-fication of roughly every food near and dear to my heart. Grilled cheeses, lattes, bagels, you name it—it probably has a rainbow-smattered twin out there. It’s not that I find food dye all that objectionable or offensive (uh hello, I developed this pink monstrosity… JK, it’s really yummy), but I don’t know, for whatever reason, I just don’t get a kick out of eating tie-dyed cheese. Maybe I’m just not all that colorful of a person (IDK why I said “maybe,” I wear solid black probably 3 days a week), but I’ve been hoping this ROYGBIV trend would make its timely exit out of the kitchen for months now.

I say all of this as a preface just so that you know I’m a sane and level-headed person as it relates to turning perfectly fine meals into radioactive-looking weirdness. But here’s the thing, some foods are meant to reflect the rainbow—like Skittles and Fruit Loops, but also, actual fruit. And vegetables too! You see, eating a natural iteration of the rainbow—as opposed to a pizza that appears to have served as the sacrificial alter for a Lisa Frank unicorn—isn’t annoying. It’s actually rather lovely. Which brings us to this, Rainbow Salsa. It’s a super-fun snacking spread that taps the inherently vibrant colors of nature to deliver a striking rainbow effect… via salsa.

In other words, if you and your crew are salsa people, i.e. the best kind of people, this colorful smorgasbord of fruity, savory, tangy, spicy, salty, sweet freshness is exactly what you need at your next party or taco night. Once served, guests can enjoy each band of the salsa rainbow independently, or get a little wild and mix green with indigo for their own custom blend. Each of the “colors” used to create this rainbow fiesta of an appetizer are compatible with one another for mixing—so don’t worry if your rainbow starts to turn into a tie-dye platter after folks start munching. Now, I’m sure some of you are wondering, why on earth would I want to make 6 different salsas? That’s a completely valid question, and I’m here to tell you, you’d consider doing it A.) because it looks really cool and B.) all 6 distinctly colored bands are ridiculously simple to make. A little chop-and-stir action, and you’ll have your palate-pleasing color palette in no time.

So, you ready to rainbow? Here’s what you’ll need:

Red Band = Watermelon-Tomato Salsa

Use your peak-season, juicy summer tomatoes and watermelon to create a sweet and tangy salsa that’s as delicious spooned over grilled chicken as it is on a tortilla chip. Although, we were definitely willing to sacrifice a little color integrity in the name of cheese (because what wouldn’t we sacrifice in the name of cheese?), feel free to skip the queso fresco if you want to keep the salsa’s color pure red.

Orange = Papaya-Mango Salsa

Not only does this vibrant, tropical salsa make a beautiful orange band for your rainbow, but it’s a dagum delicious topper for fish tacos. Meaning… maybe you should consider living your best life and adding fish tacos to the menu line-up.

Yellow = Yellow Corn Salsa

This sweet corn salsa is for sure the condiment equivalent of sunshine. That’s all.

Green = Zucchini Salsa Verde

This simple, but flavor-packed, green salsa provides a delicious destiny for a bit of your summer zucchini stockpile. Any leftovers would be most excellent enjoyed over nachos or served with fajitas.

Blue = Blue-Berry Salsa

Beyond providing a most beautiful shade of blue, this sweet and spicy berry salsa is a fabulous condiment for grilled pork chops. Do with that information what you will.

Indigo/violet = Beet Salsa

Before you question beets’ place in the salsa world, please just try this richly colored blend of beets, red onion, jicama, fresh cilantro, and serrano chile… I can almost guarantee all of your questions will be answered.

Once you have all of your salsas prepped, simply assemble them in bands on a large serving platter. Now bust out the chips, cause you just got this party started.