Use up garden tomatoes and zucchini with this Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa Recipe, a fresh tomato salsa that yields 26 pints of salsa.

pint jar of Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa Recipe

Friends, today I’m sharing a classic salsa recipe that I have canned for years, a Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa Recipe. Years ago we had 12 garden beds with a lot of heirloom tomatoes. [This post is updated and reposted from 9 years ago here on RE.]

Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa Recipe

We “put up” 26 pints of delicious sweet smokey salsa.

I love that term, “put up,” don’t you? It sounds so … old-fashioned and lovely!

I know my Mom and Grandma talked about canning that way. :)

tray of fresh garden tomatoes

How do you eat zucchini salsa?

This recipe yields 26 pints of delicious homemade salsa! Besides the normal way of enjoying with your favorite chips, try these ways to eat this salsa:

  • This salsa is delicious served with taco salad!
  • You can also substitute for half of the tomato sauce in meatloaf – so good!
  • Or, dump it over scrambled eggs or omelets for breakfast or brunch!
  • Also, great in breakfast burritos!

And if you haven’t tried my other canned zucchini recipe, Sweet Zucchini Relish, then you’re missing out!

Ingredients for zucchini salsa:

  • Shredded zucchini
  • Onions, shredded
  • Green and red bell peppers
  • Pickling salt
  • Dry mustard + garlic powder + cumin + red chili powder
  • Liquid smoke (optional, but this give a nice smokey flavor)
  • White vinegar
  • Brown sugar
  • Cilantro
  • Jalapeno peppers
  • Ground pepper
  • Heirloom or gardenn tomatoes (a lot of them)
  • Cornstarch
  • Tomato paste

When we had our garden beds, my goal was to try to not let any of of it go to waste.

How to can salsa

Canning salsa is easy!

  1. The first day: In a large bowl combine; Zucchini, onions, green pepper, red pepper and the salt Mix together cover and let stand over night. This is the brining process.
  2. The second day. Next day rinse, drain well and put into a large pot then add mustard, garlic, cumin, vinegar, brown sugar, pepper flakes, salt,cornstarch, pepper, 1 tablespoon salt, tomatoes and tomato paste. Don’t forget the liquid smoke for a “smokey” flavor.
  3. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
  4. Pour into sterilized jars and seal.
  5. Water bath jars for 15 minutes.

fresh garden tomatoes

Can you use frozen zucchini?

People ask me all the time and I’ve never tried it, but I would only use fresh zucchini.

canning jars of Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa

Friends, this is the best salsa I’ve ever tasted. I followed the recipe exactly, and I’ve made many batches over the years!

big canning pot of zucchini salsa

A homemade jar of salsa

I try to use as much of my own garden produce as possible for this recipe, only buy the red and green peppers. But you can buy the onions and jalapeno peppers, etc. if you don’t grow those.

It’s always a hit, and we used to give lots away as gifts.

Everyone loves a homemade jar of salsa!

Appliances for making zucchini salsa

We love our Cuisinart food processor. It makes canning much faster and easier, than chopping or shredding by hand.

You can buy it, here.

Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa Recipe - how to

Salsa canning tips:

-If using Roma tomatoes, you may get away with using less tomato paste.
-You can substitute parsley for the cilantro if needed.
-Always use kitchen gloves when cooking with jalapeno peppers.

Not only does this recipe call for tomatoes, which are high in acidity, it also calls for vinegar. Using vinegar with a 5% acidity also makes it safe for water bath canning. There are a few more tips below.

It’s funny, everyone seems to have a “secret ingredient” when canning salsa.

So we added in Liquid Smoke to get a “smokey” flavor.

To die for!

ENJOY!

Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa

This recipe is completely safe

NOTE: There’s lots of debate regarding whether you need to pressure can or just use water bath for canning salsa. Because this recipe has vinegar and canning salt, it adds enough preservative and brings up the acidity level to the point where pressure processing is not necessary. My recommendation for any canning is that you need to research yourself what is best for each recipe and the ingredients involved though! Please refer your safe or not safe questions to the National Center for Home Food Preservation.

More salsa recipes (that don’t require canning):

Best Avocado Salsa Verde

Quick Mango Salsa Recipe

The Best Homemade Salsa Recipe

Fresh Peach Salsa With Mint

pint jar of Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa Recipe
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Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa Recipe

A delicious treat to can in the summertime and give the gift of your harvest away in pint-size jars for the holidays! YIELDS about 26 pints of salsa.
There's lots of debate regarding whether you need to pressure can or just use water bath for canning salsa. Because this recipe has vinegar and canning salt, it adds enough preservative and brings up the acidity level to the point where pressure processing is not necessary. My recommendation for any canning is that you need to research yourself what is best for each recipe and the ingredients involved though! Please refer your safe or not safe questions to the National Center for Home Food Preservation.

Ingredients

  • 30 cups peeled shredded zucchini
  • 12 small onions, shredded (6 large)
  • 6 green peppers, chopped or shredded
  • 6 red peppers, chopped or shredded
  • ¾ cup pickling salt
  • 3 Tablespoons dry mustard
  • 3 Tablespoons garlic powder
  • 3 Tablespoons cumin
  • 2 Tablespoons red chili powder
  • 3 Tablespoons Liquid Smoke
  • 6 cups white vinegar
  • 2 ¼ cups brown sugar
  • 2 cups cilantro, chopped
  • 10-15 jalapeno peppers, chopped
  • 3 tsp. ground pepper
  • 15-20 cups chopped ripe tomatoes, leave skins on
  • 3-4 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 12 oz. cans tomato paste

Instructions

  • Day ONE: Combine the first 5 ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Mix well and let stand overnight in the refrigerator.
  • Day TWO: Rinse and drain the zucchini and onion mixture well.
  • Put into a large pot with all other ingredients.
  • Bring to a boil; simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Pour mixture into hot jars and process 15 minutes in a boiling water bath canner.

Notes

Reposted from August 2012
Did you make this recipe?Tag @reluctantentertainer on Instagram and hashtag it #reluctantentertainer!

 

jar of canned Sweet Smokey Zucchini Salsa

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