When it comes to preparing unique dishes and cuisines, Mexicans are always a step ahead. From preparing newer dishes to side items with those dishes, we have seen a range of new food items being introduced every now and then. One of the best side items which originated from Mexican culture includes Salsa, a sauce that can be used for a wide variety of food items including barbecue.
Follow the guide below to learn more about things to consider when buying salsa as well as our take on some of the best salsa choices of all time.
What is Salsa?
For those who are new to food, Salsa is a sauce that can be used with different types of food items. Tacos, Tortillas, Fries, and Steak are a few of the best foods to use salsa with. Although most of us consider salsa as chunky tomato and chili sauce, in reality, there are many different types of sauces. It got popular back in the 1980s and since then, salsa has become one of the favorite dips to be consumed by Americans.
Things to Consider When Buying Salsa
Most of you would go to the market and be confused after seeing a number of available options. However, follow this criteria when buying salsa to have a safe and tasty one.
It’s obvious that everyone would consider the price when buying salsa but here we present a different aspect. Firstly, you should be evaluating the price gap between different brands, and secondly, you should be considering the price you are paying for salsa vs the cost you would be incurring in case you prepared it at home. In case you are planning to get authentic Mexican salsa, you should be choosing a Mexican brand as well. This may cost you higher but you would be getting what people generally prefer when they want authentic salsa.
Sometimes, the pricing is also dependent upon the flavoring. Some flavors tend to be cheaper while the others could be expensive and this price difference is mainly because of the ingredients being used in them. Therefore, when you are comparing salsa on the basis of price, make sure that you are using the same kind of salsa.
Make Vs Buy
Another aspect quite related to price as well as flavoring is whether to make the salsa or buy it from the mart. Most people buy it from the market because it does not cost you a lot. However, some believe that it is quite cheaper when made at home. The research concludes that homemade salsa is 10 cents cheaper per ounce of salsa. For example, a branded salsa may be priced at 0.83 an ounce while if you make it at home, you might be able to save 10 to 15 cents on every ounce. Sometimes, homemade salsa is going to be cheaper, like 20 to 25 cents per ounce if the branded salsa is at a really high price.
In case you have plans to make really large volumes of salsa, you can choose to make it instead of buying. While some people do like to avoid the hassle and get it from the market, one of the main benefits of making it at home is that you can make it accordingly as per your taste requirements. The flexibility in taste, cost, and volume are some of the key factors that buyers should consider when thinking about a make vs buy decision for salsa.
Suggested Reading – Guide to the Types of Barbecue Meats
Even if you can buy a lot of salsa at once, it is NOT recommended to do so. The main reason for this is that salsa can only be stored for a short period. The unopened salsa can be usually kept for 1.5 – 3 months at the maximum while if you have an opened salsa, its life is further shortened to 1 – 2.5 weeks only. Keep in mind that salsa requires refrigeration so you should not be keeping it somewhere out or it will expire in just a matter of days – or in the worst case, only a few hours.
A mistake that many people make is that they get bulk salsa just because they are trying to get a better price deal out of it. However, for a small family, such a high quantity is not needed. In the end, you forcefully consume it all within 2 months so that the product does not expire. Buy salsa in small volumes and stay healthy.
There are various types of salsas you can get from the market. There is a chunky salsa that contains big pieces of tomato for those who really like the salsa to be thick. On the other hand, there is roasted salsa which has a more cooked taste, unlike regular salsa. Many salsas you find on the shelves would be having chilies made on them which indicates that these salsas are spicy too for all the spice fans out there. This kind of salsa is also known as hot salsa.
However, there are fruity ones as well which have a sweet flavor as many people like. Depending upon your taste preferences, you can get any of these. Our recommendation is to get the classic Mexican salsa because it gives you the most authentic Mexican salsa taste without any special flavoring.
Learn how to make a great barbecue sauce – What Makes a Great Barbecue Sauce?
One main aspect of packed foods is the nutritional content inside them. As per 100 grams of salsa, there are 7 grams of carbs, 1.5 grams of protein, and 0.2 grams of fat. Since we only use salsa as a sauce and not as a side dish, the carbs’ value is fine. However, what matters more is that sometimes, the processed salsa may not be as healthy as a homemade one. There might be chemical compositions within the salsa that you should evaluate prior to buying the salsa.
Look for those brands that say “No preservatives added”. Simultaneously, there are certain brands which have been approved by the FDA or have the “gluten-free” tag. These are healthy choices. In case you are preferring a particular diet such as the keto diet, some salsas are specifically made with keto-friendly ingredients. Go natural! Go healthy.
Take a look at the following nutritional content of salsa based on a serving of 259 grams.
Best Salsas for Snacks and Barbecue
If you are looking for a salsa that gives great taste and value for money at the same time, the Tostitos Medium Chunky Salsa would be the best choice. It is an Amazon’s Choice product as well as ranks on top in the category of refrigerated salsas. The complete package comes with 4 jars of salsa each with 15.5 ounces of product volume.
The best part? You won’t be disappointed by its taste, especially those who like their food to be spicy. With a global rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars, we believe this salsa to be one of the hot favorites of all time making it our No. 1 recommendation for salsas.
Although there is nothing wrong with the product, the only flaw we noticed was that it is available in a pack of 4 only which many people might not want. For instance, a couple would not want as much salsa. We recommend that you order this package only when you have a large family or you can share it with friends as well. In case this does not seem like a viable option, head on to the next option where you have limited quantities available too.
If you are a person who likes their salsa to be neither too sweet nor too hot, Amy’s Organic Medium Salsa is exactly what you need. What we loved the most about this is that it is an organic salsa made with ingredients like sun-sweetened tomatoes, chopped onions, garlic, jalapeno, peppers, and cilantro. As a result, you can enjoy the medium flavor of salsa without compromising your health in any way.
Furthermore, it is gluten-free, dairy-free, and soy-free thereby eliminating all concerns for a specific diet. Moreover, there are two other flavors in this salsa as well. You can get the mild one which has almost no spice at all. People who like a sweeter taste should choose that. If you are bored of the traditional tomato taste of salsa, you can also get the Black Bean & Corn Salsa flavor.
There aren’t any downsides to this salsa except for the fact that some people found it expensive but there haven’t been any complaints on taste so we believe it’s a good-to-go item for your barbecue or snacks.
If you are looking for roasted tomato salsa, the FRONTERA Gourmet Mexican would be an ideal choice. It is a medium-flavored salsa with a pinch of onions and jalapenos to add a mildly spicy flavor. The best part is that you would be getting salsa that has an authentic Mexican taste. For barbecue and other snack items, this one is the perfect Mexican salsa.
A great thing we observed was that it has been made with regards to the keto-friendly diet. Therefore, all those who are going on a weight loss journey would find this salsa perfect for any food type. Try it out with tortilla chips, barbecue, or even use it as a topping on the scrambled eggs. The total weight of one jar is 16 ounces which is fine. In case the above-mentioned options are not available, this salsa would be a perfect choice.
Normal salsas are made of tomato and spices giving you a traditional taste. However, if you are looking for something different that would savor your taste buds, we recommend using fruity salsa. Peach is a great flavor that is preferred by many people while other flavors in this salsa include Blackberry Serrano, Mango Habanero, Pineapple, and Pumpkin as well. Keep in mind that this has a slightly sweet flavor.
As far as the health aspect is concerned, you would be glad to know that this salsa is Non-GMO Certified, contains no gluten, and has zero corn syrup which is why you only get the healthy ingredients in it. The jar has a packaging size of 16 ounces which can easily give 14 servings. For those following a diet plan, they would be comfortable consuming this salsa because it has only 15 calories.
Keep in mind that you can either get 2 jars or 4 jars each with 16 ounces per jar. Our recommendation is the Mango or Peach flavor because many people didn’t like the Pineapple flavor. Being a family-based business for a long time, there has been significant improvement in the taste of this salsa.
|Tostitos Medium Chunky Salsa, 4 Count, 15.5 oz Jars||Amy's Organic Medium Salsa||FRONTERA Gourmet Mexican Double Roasted Tomato Salsa||Mrs. Renfros Peach Salsa Non-GMO, Gluten-Free|
|Flavor||Spicy||Medium / Mild / Black Bean & Corn||Medium||Blackberry Serrano, Peach, Mango Habanero, Pineapple|
|Minimum Quantity||4 Jars / 15.5 Ounce Each||1 Jar / 14 Ounces||1 Jar / 16 Ounces||2 Jars / 16 ounces|
|Health Notes||Kosher||No-GMO||Keto Friendly||NON-GMO, Gluten-free, Low Calorie|
The criteria for selecting any type of salsa has been clearly outlined above. Based on the criteria and the available options, the expert recommendation is that if you are a small family, you should get Amy’s Organic Medium Salsa because it is available in smaller packaging as well as a variety of flavors too. In case you can share, the first option would be perfect as it has been ranked as one of the best salsas for snacks and barbecue items.