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Pico de Gallo Recipe

Our Pico de Gallo recipe is full of fresh ingredients and adds a ton of flavor to your favorite foods. It pairs well with tacos, burritos, or tortilla chips!

A good pico de gallo recipe is a must-have for a home cook’s recipe arsenal. It’s one of those condiments that can elevate a good recipe to a great recipe, kind of like Cajun compound butter and homemade salsa.

Our pico de gallo recipe has 6 ingredients (counting the salt), and pairs well with so many foods. We like to add it to vegetarian burrito bowls and black bean stuffed sweet potatoes.

Lately, I’ve been loading up roasted potatoes with some fresh pico de gallo and eating them for breakfast and lunch. It’s easy to make a big batch and holds well in the fridge for a couple of days.

Pico de Gallo in a white bowl.

Pico de Gallo Ingredients:

  • Roma Tomatoes are my favorite for Pico de Gallo. They’re the right size and firm enough to hold up to fine chopping and stirring. Plus, their flavor is great.
  • White Onion works well for this recipe. However, any variety of white, Spanish, sweet, or Vidalia onion will mix well. Some will taste sweeter than others but none will be overly strong.
  • Fresh Cilantro is a must for Pico de Gallo. I know a lot of people have an aversion to cilantro, but in my opinion it’s necessary to get the right taste for the recipe. Fresh is the way to go here! Don’t try to substitute with dried.
  • Jalapeno or Serrano Pepper is another key ingredient. Even though jalapenos can pack some heat, they are milder than serrano peppers. Either one works well. To lessen the heat, remove the seeds and membrane from the pepper.
  • Freshly Squeezed Lime Juice adds a touch of acid to the recipe and pulls the flavors together.
  • Sea Salt enhances all the flavors.
Four images in a collage showing the steps of how to make pico de gallo.

How do you make Pico de Gallo from scratch?

  1. Our Pico de Gallo recipe starts by prepping all the ingredients beginning with the tomatoes and pepper. My personal preference is to scoop out of the insides of the tomato and remove all the seeds.
  2. The tomatoes’ seedy parts add a ton of moisture to homemade Pico de Gallo and can make it runny. I’ve found that the consistency and texture is better if the seeds are removed.
  3. Do the same for the jalapeno or serrano. Dice the tomatoes, pepper, and onion into small pieces that are uniform in size.
  4. Chop the cilantro into small pieces, and place everything into a medium mixing bowl. Add the lime juice and sea salt, and stir to combine.
  5. Our Pico de Gallo recipe needs to be refrigerated for about 10 minutes before using to allow the flavors to meld together. After that, continue to store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
Top down view of pico de gallo recipe in a bowl.

What does Pico de Gallo mean?

The Spanish to English translation of Pico de Gallo is “beak of rooster.” Pico de Gallo is a salsa popular with Mexican and Tex-Mex fare and is commonly eaten with tacos, burritos, eggs, tortilla chips, and quesadillas.

Can Homemade Pico de Gallo be made in the food processor?

Yes, homemade Pico de Gallo can be made in a food processor. Pulse the ingredients a few times until they reach the desired consistency. The end result will be more like salsa and less “diced” than fresh Pico de Gallo.

Is Pico de Gallo spicy?

It’s not overly spicy but will ultimately depend on how much heat the jalapeno or Serrano pepper has. If you remove the seeds and membrane from the pepper, it will have less heat.

Can you make Pico de Gallo without cilantro?

Sure! It’s not going to have the same flavor, but the cilantro can be omitted. You can substitute parsley in it’s place if you still want some fresh green herbs in the dish.

What is the difference between salsa and Pico de Gallo?

The ingredients in salsa are very similar to those in Pico de Gallo, but they have been processed down to a thinner more liquid consistency. Many times, the ingredients also include garlic which is omitted from some Pico de Gallo recipes.

Pico de Gallo is finely chopped and has less liquid. It’s a chunky condiment that may or may not contain garlic.
Ariel view of fresh pico de gallo on a piece of wood.
Pico de Gallo with tomatoes and jalapenos.

Pico de Gallo Recipe

4.3 from 3 votes
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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Additional Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 2 .5 Cups
Calories: 12kcal

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  • 4 Roma Tomatoes deseeded and diced
  • Cup White Onion finely diced
  • ½ Cup Cilantro finely chopped
  • 1 Jalapeno or Serrano Pepper deseed and membranes removed
  • 1 Tablespoon Lime Juice juice from 1 lime
  • ½ Teaspoon Salt


  • Combine all ingredients together in a medium bowl. Allow the ingredients to set and meld together for about 10 minutes.
  • Serve with chips, tacos, burritos, eggs, or your other favorite foods. Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


*The calories listed are an approximation based on the ingredients in the recipe card and a serving size of 1/4 cup of pico de gallo. Actual calories will vary.
*For more information, tips, and answers to frequently asked questions, please refer to the post.


Calories: 12kcal | Carbohydrates: 3g | Sodium: 108mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g
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