If you've ever stood in front of the ruby-red row of glass jars containing mild, medium, and hot salsa and wondered, which brand is it that we like again? then have I got news for you. Though salsa seems like a delicate dance between spice and heat, it's actually simple to make. Like crazy "why have I been hauling glass jars home from the store all these years" easy.

It all started at a beach weekend with our friends. One of the guys busted out the chips and two cans, plus one spice. "What are you doing?" I asked, suspiciously (let's just say the margaritas had been flowing). "Making the salsa!" he replied.

He took one 14-ounce can of crushed tomatoes and added a petite (7-ounce) can of sliced jalapenos. He swears by Hunt's and La Constena brands, so we haven't deviated, but mostly because we're too happy with the recipe to risk it. He poured those in a blender (juice and all), then added 1 teaspoon of cumin and 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Blend until the jalapenos are thoroughly chopped (about 5-7 pulses), then serve. It's best if you can wait for it to chill, but who has that kind of willpower?

How to Make Homemade Salsa, aka Reid's Amazing Homemade Salsa

14-ounce can crushed tomatoes

7-ounce can sliced jalapenos

1 teaspoon cumin

1/2 teaspoon salt

Blend until combined. This recipe can be easily doubled, tripled, or modified to fit your tastes. Try it with onion, cilantro, and whatever else tickles your fancy.

Since our friend introduced us to this five-minute homemade salsa (and that's if you have to really look for the can opener), I've completely stopped buying salsa, which is saying something because we go through about a batch a week. Plus, when friends come over, I get to be the hostess who pulls out the glass container from the fridge to serve. "Did you make this?", they ask? "Yes!" I reply "And it was so impossibly hard that I can never tell you the recipe, so you should really savor it."

But, of course, then I tell them and we all realize that we're in on the conspiracy now. Making homemade salsa is easy. If you have a blender, a can opener, and pantry items, then you're set. Just don't forget the chips!

It's worth noting that you can also dress up store-bought salsa, though it doesn't save you any time as it still requires a blender for mixing. This Dressed-up Salsa from Southern Living adds a punch of cilantro and jalapeno to the jarred variety, making it a tangy version of the restaurant classic.


Thinking of canning or freezing your homemade salsa? Get our Expert's tips and tricks to making your delicious dish last through the season.

By Ashley Kappel and Ashley Kappel