May 21, 2020

Homemade Pico de Gallo

Homemade Pico de Gallo is fresh, easy, and so delicious. It is the perfect dip for tortilla chips or topping for tacos or enchiladas. This recipe is a twist on classic pico de gallo and adds cucumber for even more fresh flavor. This recipe is Whole30 compliant, gluten-free, and Paleo friendly. 

Easy Homemade Pico de Gallo 

Crunchy tortilla chips with a super fresh dip! Is there anything better?! That combination has to be in the top five snacks of all time. When it comes to fresh dips one of the best is Pico de Gallo. If you have never made Pico de Gallo from scratch, you might be thinking that it’s a bit more complicated than it actually is. Let me reassure you that making your own homemade Pico de Gallo could not be easier.

This homemade Pico de Gallo tastes just like the Chipotle version, only better! It is filled with fresh ripe tomatoes, cilantro, and lime juice. This recipe is a twist on the classic version and includes fresh cucumber.

This salsa is the perfect blend of fresh, cool, and bright. All of the ingredients work so well together to make a delicious salsa that makes a great topping for tacos, burritos, and salads. Or, just pair it with your favorite tortilla chips for a quick snack.

This recipe is naturally gluten free, Whole30 compliant, Paleo, and vegan!

What is Pico de Gallo? 

Pico de gallo, also called salsa fresca (meaning fresh salsa), is a salsa commonly used in Mexican cuisine. The traditional version of this salsa is made from fresh tomatoes, onion, cilantro, peppers, and lime juice. Unlike the jarred salsa you buy at the grocery store, this salsa is fresh and uncooked. The consistency of pico de gallo is also chunkier (you can see each individual ingredient) and less watery or thin than cooked, jarred salsas.

What Does Pico De Gallo Mean? 

Pico de Gallo actually translates in English to “rooster’s beak”.

Pico de Gallo Ingredients

diced tomato, onion, cucumber, jalapeno, and cilantro in a clear mixing bowl

Tomato: The key to delicious pico is really fresh, ripe tomatoes. The base of the salsa is tomatoes so it is important that you pick tomatoes that are ripe and ready for eating. The best tomatoes to use for this recipe are roma tomatoes or grape tomatoes. Try to avoid using beefsteak or slicing tomatoes unless you absolutely cannot find anything else.

Onion: You can use either red or white onion for this recipe.

Cilantro: When you are chopping your cilantro do not leave out the stems! It’s common for people to just use the leaves of fresh herbs and discard the stems but you do not have to do that with cilantro. Because it is a softer herb (it doesn’t have a hard woodsy stem like rosemary) you can use both the leaves and the stem. Cilantro stems are actually packed with flavor and you do not have to waste time trying to remove each leaf so it’s a win all around!

Jalapeno: Classic pico de gallo includes either Serrano or jalapeño pepper but if you cannot tolerate spice feel free to leave it out.

Cucumber: Cucumber is not a traditional ingredient in classic Pico de Gallo so feel free to leave it out if you prefer. I love the extra freshness and crunch it adds to the salsa.

Lime Juice: Usually the juice of one large juicy lime will do the trick but feel free to add more lime juice if you prefer.

How to Make the Best Homemade Pico de Gallo

homemade Pico de Gallo in a clear bowl with a wooden spoon

Step One: Finely dice or chop all of your ingredients. The goal is to dice everything roughly the same size. This will help you avoid biting into a big chunk of onion or jalapeño when trying to enjoy your salsa.

Step Two: Add all of the chopped ingredients to a mixing bowl then add the salt and lime juice.

Step Three: Use a spoon to stir everything together until well combined. Give the pico de gallo a taste and add more lime juice or salt to suit your tastebuds. Serve and enjoy!

How to Serve Your Pico de Gallo

Pico de gallo can be used in the same way you would use regular jarred salsa which means the options are endless. Here are few creative ways to serve your pico de gallo:

  • As a topping for tacos
  • On the side of carne asada, grilled chicken, or grilled fish
  • In burritos or as a topping on your burrito bowls
  • On the side of fajitas
  • As a topping for enchiladas or enchilada stuffed sweet potatoes
  • Or, keep it classic and just serve with tortilla chips and guacamole

Still need a few more creative ways to use your homemade pico? Feel free to get creative and serve it with just about anything! You can serve this fresh salsa with more than Mexican-inspired recipes, too. The pico is full of flavor so it instantly can amp up your avocado toast, scrambled eggs, chili, or breakfast hash. Do not be afraid to try it on something new.

If you are looking for a few healthy Mexican-inspired recipes to serve your fresh salsa with, here are a few delicious and easy options to try: 

homemade Pico de Gallo in a white bowl

More Homemade Salsa Recipes to Love

By now you can probably see that making your own homemade salsa is really pretty easy. Not only does it guarantee that your salsa is delicious and fresh every time, making it from scratch also gives you the ability to get creative and customize your salsa with whatever fruit and veggies you may have on hand. If you are ready to try out a few new salsa combinations, here are a few great recipes you will love.

Avocado Corn Salsa

Mango Salsa

Avocado Salsa

Peach Salsa


Homemade Pico de Gallo

  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Author: Ashlea Carver
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 0 minutes
  • Total Time: 10 minutes
  • Yield: 6 1x


  • 2 cups finely diced grape or roma tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup finely diced red onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup finely diced cucumber
  • 1/21 whole finely diced seeded jalapeño (optional)
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (plus more to taste)


  1. Add all of the chopped ingredients to a mixing bowl and then add the salt and lime juice.
  2. Use a spoon to stir everything together until well combined. Give the pico de gallo a taste and add more lime juice or salt to suit your tastebuds. Serve and enjoy!

Keywords: homemade Pico de Gallo, Pico de Gallo, Pico de Gallo recipe, easy Pico de Gallo, salsa

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    • Hi, Amethyst! I would just recommend leaving it out all together or adding in some finely sliced green onion. Hope that helps!

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