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15 February 2016

A recipe for sweet and spicy salsa made with fresh papaya, jalapeno, cayenne peppers and more.

Sometimes all it takes for a recipe to come together is the inspiration of a single ingredient. In this case – the PAPAYA. As we were walking through the local farmers’ market, all manner of fresh foods found their way into our shopping bag. Chili peppers of all sorts, avocados, potatoes, tomatoes, Brussels sprouts, and a single super ripe papaya. Such a gorgeous fruit. Papayas are mild but slightly sweet, with the consistency of a ripe mango and an almost buttery texture. They aren’t quite as sweet as melon, and perfect for salsa, IMO.

So! Papaya Salsa it is, my friends. Something simple and something super easy to serve up at a party or an impromtu gathering. Salsa is always a hit for parties, pretty much a no-brainer, and I should emphasize that salsa making truly is relatively easy to do. Salsa is essentially a mixture of chopped fruits and vegetables with other herbs and seasonings. From there you can serve it up fresh or cooked, blended or unblended. It all depends on the final goal you have in mind.

This is a cooked down version, with everything tossed into a hot pan, then blended in a food processor. You can always make yours a bit chunkier by processing only half of the mixture, or only processing it a little bit. Or, go as smooth as you’d like. Even consider adding a bit of water for more of a table sauce. Either way, it tastes great! Look at the consistency. I want to dive right in there!

Papaya Salsa Recipe

Patty’s Perspective: LOVE this stuff. This salsa was so flavorful and unique that I wanted to keep it all to myself and make it my dinner. We served it as an appetizer. Too bad there was all this other great food coming! So, I had to share.

Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Papaya Salsa

A recipe for sweet and spicy salsa made with fresh papaya, jalapeno, cayenne peppers and more.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Appetizer
Cuisine: Mexican
Servings: 4
Calories: 42kcal


  • Splash of olive oil
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 2 jalapeno peppers chopped
  • 1 long red cayenne pepper chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic chopped
  • ½ papaya peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2 medium tomatoes chopped
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • ½ cup white vinegar
  • Salt to taste


  • Heat a pan to medium heat and add olive oil.
  • Add onion and chili peppers and cook about 5 minutes to soften.
  • Add garlic and cook another minute, stirring.
  • Add papaya, tomatoes and cilantro. Stir and cook about 5 minutes to soften everything.
  • Add vinegar and salt. Reduce heat and simmer about 15 minutes.
  • Transfer the batch to a food processor and process to form your salsa. It can be as thick or thin as you’d like.
  • Adjust for salt and cool.
  • Serve!


Calories: 42kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 1g | Sodium: 7mg | Potassium: 255mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 4g | Vitamin A: 1000IU | Vitamin C: 31mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 0.3mg



  1. Incredible recipe.

    Simple and delicious. My first time ever making salsa and I surprised myself with how it turned out. Didn’t have any chips so I fried up some corn tortillas and made my own, I think they ended up tasting better than store bought chips. Would recommend.

  2. Michelle B.

    5 stars
    WOW! I just made this… I made a small batch I just eyed the ingredient amounts, Since it turned out so good…. I’m making more right now. Unfortunately I didn’t have a fresh cayenne pepper. I just used a big jalapeno and left the seed in …. a nice amount of heat. I will definitely make this salsa again and again and again…… I like how it looks like a tomato salsa but “surprise”
    Super yummy!

    1. Michael Hultquist - Chili Pepper Madness

      Awesome, Michelle. Thanks! Super happy you enjoyed it!

  3. I would like to make this but do not know if to use green or ripe papaya

    REPLY: Whitlyn, it is best to use ripe papaya. — Mike from Chili Pepper Madness.

  4. Lydia Rose

    OMG, what a beautiful sight. A feast for the eyes as well as the tummy. I can almost taste it.
    Wal-Mart has papaya but I have never bought one
    I don’t know when they are ripe and ready to use. I am absolutely going to try to make this salsa.
    Thank you for sharing your recipe.
    And now, with your permission, I am going to explore your site.

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