Homemade Canned Salsa with Ball Can-It-Forward Day

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Homemade Canned Salsa

Homemade Canned Salsa

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Over the last few years, there has been a boom with the love of all things glass jars. People have fallen out of love with plastics, as well as store bought, packaged, and processed foods. Instead, we have opted to go back more to the basics with growing our own foods, canning, and freezing them. Then, of course, there is a whole industry of crafting based on glass jars.

I grew up in the country. My parents were country folks. We always raised a large garden, even when we lived in town. All of our neighbors did. It’s just something we did in the 70s. My daddy’s parents were share croppers.  My mama’s parents also raised many acres of crops, so gardening obviously flows through our veins.

In the summers, we spent either the early morning or the late evening in the garden. We were busy planting, watering, weeding, and harvesting all summer long. Even when it wasn’t being done at my mom and dad’s, it was being done at my Great Aunt Agnes’s house. She and Mr. Hoyt planted acres upon acres. We spent a lot of time picking up potatoes and carefully spreading them in one of the sheds to keep them from going bad.

After the outside work was done in the garden, we had plenty of more work to do with the fruits of our labor. There were peas to shell, corn to shuck, potatoes to clean, figs to stem, tomatoes to … well there were lots of things we could do with tomatoes. Most of the time the tomatoes went into jars though.

Until recently, I had never considered canning. It’s something I helped my parents and other family members do when I was young. It wasn’t anything I ever considered doing myself. But I was contacted from Ball’s Can-It-Forward Day and asked me to participate in the 5th annual Can-It-Forward Day, so how could I resist?

My first thought was, “Mmmmmm, Salsa!” Then I began thinking about all of those times when I was a kid and had to help keep count of the canned foods and whether or not the jars had “popped.” This is a sign of the jars sealing shut, just an FYI, in case you aren’t familiar.

Homemade Canned Salsa

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Once I received my kit, I was thrilled to learn I only needed to supply water, tomatoes, and a little vinegar to turn my kit and a few other ingredients into my own homemade canned salsa.  My kit contained:

  • Ball Canning Discovery Kit: The perfect, easy home canning starter set.  Equipped with a canning rack, recipe guide and jars, all you need is a recipe and stockpot to begin preserving! ($11.99)
  • Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving: The new 37th edition of the Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving is the most trusted resource in home canning for over 100 years and this new 2015 release is its largest update since the first edition in 1909.  Expanding 56% from the previous edition, the 37th edition of the Ball Blue Book includes 75 new recipes, pictorial step by step guides for beginners and more! (Retail value: $11.95)
  • Design Series Lids (red): Great not only for home canning, the Ball® Brand Design Series Lids With Bands are also a great option for unique crafting creations, gifts and home décor with endless mixing and matching possibilities. (Retail value: $5.95)
  • Ball Fiesta Salsa Mix: Better tasting, fresh salsa is simple to make with Ball Brand Fiesta Salsa Mix. Simply add fresh, vine-ripened or canned tomatoes, and mix with a splash of vinegar for perfect salsa every time. (Retail value: $5.99)

Tune in to the live webcast of canning demonstrations from 11:00am – 4:00pm EST on August 1, featuring an integrated chat function to submit your home canning questions to be answered in real time. New this year, there will also be an exciting celebrity mason jar auction unveiled during the webcast!  Missed the live webcast?  It’s ok.  Click on over and you can watch the replay of the webcast.

Ready to learn how to make your own homemade canned salsa? This is a step-by-step guide showing how I made mine. I hadn’t ever canned anything on my own before, so I was a little reluctant but it turned out great. It took me exactly two hours from beginning to end, but that included extra steps that you may or may not want to follow. Part of my time was also spent taking pictures for this blog post. If you have someone around to help you, the time may go a little faster, too.  I figured this wasn’t too bad considering I also have some kind of undiagnosed shoulder injury, too.

After starting to make my salsa, I realized that I was supposed to completely submerge the jars an inch under water.  Of course, I didn’t have a pot that deep, and I wasn’t going to run out to buy a pot for a one time project.  Besides, my parents never completely submerged anything under water, so I figured I would give it a shot using what I had.  My pot was almost as tall as the jars.  I poured water in to the bottom of the rings.  I used a lid to mash down the handles of the canner and placed the pot lid down as far as it would safely go down.  Since my jars weren’t submerged in water, I added five minutes to the processing time.  As soon as I turned the burner off and removed the pot lid, there was some magical music to my ears, “Pop!  Pop!  Pop!”

Needless to say, I went to bed feeling very accomplished that night.  Making homemade canned salsa is a breeze!

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Homemade Canned Salsa with Ball Can-It-Forward Day


Ready to learn how to make your homemade canned salsa? This is a step-by-step guide showing how I made mine with plenty of pictures to guide your journey.
  • 2 lbs fresh tomatoes (about 6 medium) to yield 4½ cups finely diced
  • 3 Tbsp white vinegar (5% acidity)
  • ¼ cup Ball Fiesta Salsa Mix - SHAKE TO MIX WELL BEFORE MEASURING
  • Splash of hot pepper sauce, additional jalapenos, cilantro, etc. may be added
  • 2 Ball Pint (16 oz) Fresh Preserving Jars with lids and bands
  • Don't have fresh tomatoes? Use 3 cans (14.5 oz each) petite diced tomatoes.
  • Use the Ball recipe calculator chart to customize the number of jars from 1-8
  1. Peel tomatoes, if desired. Homemade Canned Salsa
  2. Remove hard core from the end. Homemade Canned Salsa
  3. Cut tomatoes in half over a bowl or cutting board with a chamber to catch all of the juices. Homemade Canned Salsa
  4. Chop by hand or pulse in food processor until roughly chopped or desired consistency. Mine were pulsed in the Ninja for about 20 seconds. Homemade Canned Salsa
  5. COMBINE tomatoes, vinegar, and Ball Fiesta Salsa Mix in large saucepan. I also added a package of frozen cilantro cubes to mine. Homemade Canned Salsa
  6. HEAT to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes. Homemade Canned Salsa
  7. PREPARE canner, jars, and lids according to manufacturer's instructions. My jars were washed in the dishwasher, then placed in a hot water bath in the canner with the lids and rings. Be careful when removing items from the canner, s the water is boiling hot! Homemade Canned Salsa
  8. LADLE hot salsa into jars leaving ½ inch headspace. Remove air bubbles. Wipe rims. Center lids on jars. Apply bands and adjust to fingertip tight. Homemade Canned Salsa
  9. PROCESS in boiling water canner for 35 minutes, adjusting for altitude. Increase processing time: 5 minutes for 1,001 to 3, 000 ft; 10 minutes for 3,001 to 6,000 ft; 15 minutes for 6,001 to 8,000 ft; 20 minutes for 8,001 to 10,000 ft.
  10. Remove from water and allow to stand for 12 hours.
  11. Store in pantry for up to one year. Homemade Canned Salsa


  1. Kelly ellison says:

    I love canning! Doing strawberry freezer jam tomorrow.

  2. I would use more jars to male homemade bread and butter pickles with cucumbers from my garden😊

  3. I would use the jars for canning jam. I tried making peach jam for the first time this summer. Our peach tree outdid itself again this year, and I hate them going to waste!! Success, very good flavor and plenty made, will definately be trying again!! I remember my mom making grape freezer jam each year growing up, we always had yummy grape jam whenever we wanted!!

    • I’ve loved reading about that growing farm of yours. I have an apple tree that’s almost ready to harvest. I have to figure out what to do with them myself.

  4. Katie Kelly says:

    I love this post. It brings back so many memories of canning green beans, freezing corn and shucking purple hull peas with my sweet granny and granddaddy. I don’t want to win this for myself.. I want to win for my dear cousin Amanda. She lives in land right next to my aging granny and granddaddy and raises her own crops and chickens. She’s currently unemployed so she works hard at growing and bartering at farmer’s markets for food she can store for winter. This summer already she’s done pickles, jam and marinara all from the fruits of her labor. I too have canned in the past and feel like it’s an important lesson that every generation should know how to do. Thanks for this opportunity.

    • It’s really sweet of you to volunteer your win to your cousin. I’m glad to know that she’s also doing all that she can to help herself get ahead. Good luck to you both!

  5. I love canning. I am waiting on the tomatoes, peaches, pears and apples to ripen so I can put those up. I typically can 80 to 100 quart of green beans per year plus all kinds of juices, fruits, jellies, vegetables, meat, whatever becomes available. I love Ball Canning Jars and Ball lids are the only ones I trust.

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