6 ratings

Roasted Garlic and Olive Salsa Recipe

Roasted Garlic and Olive Salsa
Molly Aronica

Roasted Garlic and Olive Salsa

One of the greatest things about salsa is its versatility. This recipe has the flavor profile of an authentic Mexican salsa, but features a couple of unusual ingredients: olives and roasted garlic. The addition of lemon zest, rather than lime juice, unites the Mediterranean and Mexican flavors and adds a fresh bite to the salsa.

Roasted garlic brings a sense of depth and nuttiness to this salsa, and it could not be simpler to prepare at home. Feel free to roast a whole head of garlic, instead of just the required cloves below, and place the extra cloves in an air-tight container, covering it with oil until submerged, and keeping it in the fridge.


For the roasted garlic:

  • 4-6 garlic gloves, tops chopped off with rest of skin in tact
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

For the salsa:

  • 6 small- to medium-sized tomatoes, chopped
  • 12 brine-cured black olives (such as Kalamata), pitted and chopped
  • 1 jalapeño chile pepper, stems, ribs, and seeds removed, then chopped
  • 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Zest of 1 lemon


For the roasted garlic:

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Cut the tops off of the garlic cloves, keeping the rest of the skin in tact. Place the garlic in a small roasting pan and cover generously with olive oil. Cover the pan with aluminum foil and bake for 35 minutes. Garlic should be golden and soft. Remove the skins before adding to the salsa.

For the salsa:

Add the first six ingredients to a food processor and blend for one minute. With the processor running, slowly add olive oil to the bowl, in a steady stream, until fully combined. Transfer the salsa to a serving bowl and add the lemon zest to taste. Re-season as needed. 

Click here to see Recipe SWAT Team: Homemade Salsa Recipes.