Habanero salsa

Spicy Habanero Salsa

This post may contain affiliate links. If you choose to make a purchase through the link, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost for you.

Ready to set your tastebuds on fire with something super delicious and spicy? Look no further because this homemade habanero salsa recipe is a must-try! 

Made with red bell peppers and apples, this habanero salsa is the perfect combination of sweet, savoury and spicy. The amount of habanero peppers in the recipe can be adjusted to taste, so you can make it more or less spicy.

habanero salsa

This is a cooked salsa recipe and it’s great for both eating straight away and canning in jars. You can serve it as a dip with your favourite snacks or use it in cooking to give your dishes an extra punch. 

However you decide to use it, this flavourful spicy habanero salsa will keep your guests coming back for more.

habanero salsa

Ingredients for the spicy habanero salsa

To make this fantastic habanero salsa, you will need the following ingredients:

  • Red bell peppers – they make a great base for the salsa since habanero peppers are too spicy to be used on their own. Like this, you will get that fantastic flavour and punch from habanero combined with the mild and sweet flavour of bell peppers.
  • Onions
  • Apples – they add some more sweetness to this sauce and make it taste irresistible.
  • Habanero peppers – the amount is completely up to you – depending on how spicy you want the salsa.
  • Salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • Balsamic vinegar
  • Muscovado sugar
  • Cold-pressed olive oil

Making the habanero salsa

Making this delicious habanero salsa is really easy and quick. There is only one little trick that makes it extra rich and flavourful, the rest is a no-brainer. 

The special trick? Baking the sweet red bell peppers in the oven before cooking them in the sauce. This will make them extra rich in flavour and natural sweetness and make the salsa taste irresistible. 

If you have an option of grilling the bell peppers instead of baking them – even better! It will add even more aroma while bringing out their natural flavours. 

Anyhow, baking the peppers is your key to the best salsa in town. Trust this Balkan girl with years of ajvar cooking experience on that.

peeling roasted red bell peppers
Let the peppers cool down in a covered tray for 15-20 minutes to make them super easy to peel. Using peeled peppers will make your salsa extra creamy.

After baking, let the peppers cool down a bit in a covered tray to make them easy to peel. Peel them and chop finely. Chop the rest of the ingredients as well.

Heat up some olive oil in a wide pot, add the onions and let them cook until slightly translucent. Add salt and pepper, red bell peppers, apples and habanero peppers and continue cooking over low fire until everything is soft and mushy. Stir frequently.

After the sauce has reduced a bit, add the balsamic vinegar and muscovado sugar, stir well and boil the sauce a bit longer, until it reaches the thickness that you like.

habanero salsa

Storing the cooked salsa

From my experience, the cooked salsa can be kept in the fridge for at least five days without canning. Just let it cool down to room temperature, transfer it into a container, close it with a lid and keep it in the fridge.

If you want to preserve your habanero salsa for longer, I recommend canning it. It will stay good for a long time, especially if you have cooked it for a while and boiled out a lot of liquid from it.

habanero salsa

Canning the habanero salsa

Cooked salsa can be preserved by canning in glass jars. This is my favourite way to do it:

  • Pour the hot, freshly boiled sauce into sterilised glass jars
  • Close the jars with sterilised lids
  • Put the filled jars in the oven at 80 °C for fifteen to twenty minutes as an extra measure to keep them well-preserved
  • Let them cool down and store in a cool, dark place.

Check out this post if you want to know more details about sterilising glass jars for canning jams, dips and other homemade preserves.

habanero salsa

Ideas for serving and cooking with homemade habanero salsa

habanero salsa

Spicy Habanero Salsa

habanero salsa

Learn how to make a delicious and spicy habanero salsa with red bell peppers and apples. This homemade salsa recipe is great for canning too.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes


  • 3 large red bell peppers (500 g / 18 oz)
  • 2 small onions (200 g / 7 oz)
  • 2 medium to large apples (300 g / 10 oz)
  • 4-5 habanero peppers
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 pinch ground black pepper
  • 3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbsp muscovado sugar
  • 3 tbsp cold-pressed olive oil


  1. Bake the bell peppers at 200 °C for about 20 minutes or grill them until they get soft and look roasted from the outside. If you are using an oven, you will know they are done when you feel that sweet roasted pepper smell coming from the oven. 
  2. Let them cool down covered for 15 minutes - this will make them easy to peel.
  3. Remove the skins and chop the peppers finely. 
  4. Chop the onions, apples and habaneros. 
  5. Heat some olive oil in a pan over medium heat. 
  6. Add the onions and cook them until they get translucent.
  7. Add the apples, bell peppers and habaneros. 
  8. Add salt and pepper, and cook in a closed pot over low heat for about fifteen minutes, until all ingredients are soft. If you cook it longer, you might need to add a bit of water so as not to make it too thick.
  9. Add the balsamic vinegar and sugar and cook in an open pot until the liquid no longer separates and the salsa looks well combined. 
  10. Pour it hot into sterilised jars to preserve it.


You can make this salsa more or less spicy by using more or less habanero peppers. That is completely up to your taste. 

For more advice on preparing jars for preserving food, check out this post about sterilising jars for canning.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *