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Mama Davila’s Salsa Picante Recipe

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lamb barbacoa tacos with salsa picante

Albeit very simple, with few ingredients, this recipe comes from my mom and holds a special place in my heart. I grew up eating salsa picante with almost every meal. It was ever present as a table condiment, and topped everything, including eggs in breakfast tacos. It added a tomato-filled spicy kick to our picadillo (ground beef), or was served as straight-up salsa with chips. It will always be my favorite salsa.

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Mama Davila’s Salsa Picante

lamb barbacoa tacos with salsa picante
Tried this recipe?Tell others what you thought of it and give it a star rating below.
5 from 3 votes
This is the table sauce that's commonly served at any and every meal throughout Texas, whether you are of Hispanic origin or not. Serve it with fresh tortilla chips, over tacos or eggs, or with other savory dishes and meats such as Texas Style Lamb Barbacoa.

Sauces and Condiments
difficulty scale


2 cups
Servings: 16 2-tablespoon servings


Prep Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes


  • Food processor


  • 2 whole fresh tomatoes
  • 1 medium white onion
  • 3 serrano peppers
  • 16 ounce can of whole tomatoes
  • 1 ½ teaspoons minced fresh cilantro
  • Pinch granulated garlic
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Metric conversion:

These recipes were created in US Customary measurements and the conversion to metric is being done by calculations. They should be accurate, but it is possible there could be an error. If you find one, please let us know in the comments at the bottom of the page


  • Prep. Roughly chop the tomatoes and onion. Stem, seed, and chop the peppers.
  • Combine the fresh tomatoes, canned tomatoes, peppers, and onion in a food processor or blender. Pulse quickly to blend all the ingredients, making sure not to whip or add air.
  • Stir in the cilantro and granulated garlic, then season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve. Use immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

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Published On: 8/17/2021 Last Modified: 6/24/2024

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  • Adrian Davila, Content Contributor -

    Adrian Davila is the award-winning third-generation pitmaster of Davila’s BBQ in Seguin, Texas and is an Content Contributor.

    He continues to honor his family’s legacy and the traditions of Mexican-American cooking, all while exploring his own unique identity. His grandfather, Raul Davila, opened Davila’s in 1959, and passed the secrets of his smoked barbecue to Adrian’s [...]


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