For many families, one of the joys of summer is tending a garden. If you have a garden, consider planting basic salsa ingredients: tomatoes, peppers, onions, and cilantro. Even if you do not have the space for a garden, a container garden is a great option. You can start plants in pots inside and move them outside when the weather permits.
Salsa is simple to prepare and can include many different fruits and vegetables depending on what you have on hand or what you are craving. Gardening can teach children about where food comes from. Have them help prepare the foods from the garden and it will increase the chances that they will try different fruits and vegetables. Making salsa is also something that children of all ages can help with. Age appropriate kitchen tasks related to making salsa include:
At 2 years:
- Pick produce out of the garden
- Rinse fruits and vegetables
At 3 years (items mentioned above, plus):
- Add ingredients
- Name and count foods
At 4 years (items mentioned above, plus):
- Help measure ingredients
At 5 years (items mentioned above, plus):
- Cut soft fruits and vegetables with a dull knife
At 6-8 years (items mentioned above, plus):
- Wash dishes
- Put away ingredients
At 9-12 years (items mentioned above, plus):
- Follow a recipe
- Use small appliances like blenders and mini-choppers
- 4 cups chopped fresh tomatoes, gently rubbed under cold running water
- ¼ cup onion, scrubbed with clean vegetable brush under running water, chopped
- 1 jalapeno, gently rubbed under cold running water, seeded and chopped (optional)
- 1 Tablespoon vinegar or lime juice
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon salt, optional
- Wash hands with soap and water.
- In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients and mix well. For better flavor, let the ingredients stand in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
- Refrigerate until ready to eat.
- Serve with veggies, tortilla chips, quesadillas, or on a salad or baked potato.
- Calories 13
- Total Fat 0g
- Saturated Fat 0g
- Cholesterol 0mg
- Sodium 3.3mg
- Total Carbohydrates 3g
- Fiber 0.7g
Kitchen Activities, United States Department of Agriculture
This article was updated and reviewed in 2020.