Smoked-Tomato Salsa

Pair summer's bounty with a side of tortilla chips in our Smoked Tomato Salsa that's sure to delight during happy hour and snack time alike. In this homemade, smoky take on a chip and dip staple, jalapeno peppers and smoked tomatoes mingle with garlic, fresh lime juice, and cilantro. The result packs a punch that's sure to take any recipe that calls for salsa up a notch.This simple salsa has an incredible depth of flavor that can be achieved only by smoking the tomatoes and jalapenos. Plum tomatoes are perfect for this cooking method because they are meaty but still contain a lot of moisture. We like the milk flavor of applewood chips, but other types of wood will work–except for hickory, which can be overpowering.Pour a pitcher of margaritas and pair it with a homemade guacamole. With this smoky salsa, a mini fiesta is sure to be in your future.  

Smoked-Tomato Salsa
Photo: Greg Dupree; Food Styling: Anna Hampton; Prop Styling: Ginny Branch
Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
2 hrs
8 serves


  • 2 cups applewood chips

  • 1 ½ pounds plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise (6 tomatoes)

  • 2 jalapeño chiles

  • 1 medium-size red onion, coarsely chopped (1 cup)

  • cup fresh cilantro leaves

  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice (from 1 large lime)

  • 1 tablespoon honey

  • 1 ¼ teaspoons kosher salt


  1. Soak wood chips in water 30 minutes. Drain well. Meanwhile, prepare a charcoal fire in a smoker according to manufacturer's instructions. Maintain temperature at 200°F to 225°F for 15 to 20 minutes. Place wood chips on coals. Smoke tomatoes and jalapeños, covered with smoker lid, until tender, about 45 minutes. Remove tomatoes and jalapeños from smoker; discard stems from jalapeños.

  2. Place onion, cilantro, oregano, and garlic in a food processor; pulse until finely chopped, about 5 times. Transfer to a medium bowl. Place tomatoes, jalapeños, lime juice, honey, and salt in food processor; process until smooth, 1 minute. Transfer to bowl with onion mixture; stir to combine. Cover; chill at least 45 minutes before serving.

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