Rhubarb Salsa

by Michele Pesula Kuegler | June 26th, 2023 | Appetizers, Recipes

Move over, tomatoes! Rhubarb Salsa is the new topping you want to serve with tortilla chips.

Salsa made with rhubarb, jalapenos, onion, and cilantro

With 4th of July gatherings likely on your calendar in the coming week, you can offer to bring chips and salsa. . .rhubarb salsa, that is! Sure, you could serve regular salsa, but this rhubarb salsa would definitely be far more interesting. And it’s the perfect time of year, as rhubarb should be available.

The original post from 2019

Spring’s arrival was pretty late this year. Although the calendar says it started in mid-March, it didn’t feel very spring-like until mid-May this year. There were many days where soups and stews were the perfect dinner option to make me feel warm. And it wasn’t just me feeling this way. I think we had the heat running until late April.

However, spring is here, and with it comes the first pieces of produce. Early in May I spotted fiddleheads at a local farmstand. I immediately bought a bag of them. Their season is so short that you need to buy them on first sight. That may be the only chance you get to cook with them.

Following closely on their heels is rhubarb. Like the fiddleheads, they have a short season and typically aren’t seen after that. As opposed to many other items, they don’t often show up shipped in from some warmer climate at other times of the year.

Get to know rhubarb

What I might like best about rhubarb is its misunderstood nature. First of all, most people think of it as a fruit. It’s a vegetable. Second, because of its fruit presentation, many people think only of desserts that can be made. Knowing its true category, I have used rhubarb in a number of savory dishes, including a Rhubarb Chutney.

When I spotted rhubarb recently, I bought a bunch and figured I would create a plan after that. What to do with these pink stalks? Rhubarb can be tricky to cook. With just a little too much heat it changes from a crisp piece of produce to mush. Absolute mush. However, served raw, it’s very tart and has a bit too much crunch. My solution- sauté quickly, remove from heat immediately, and let the recipe continue.

This rhubarb salsa was quite interesting. It’s not nearly as wet as a tomato salsa, but it has a nice crunch and assortment of flavors. There’s a bit of tartness from the rhubarb, a little heat from the jalapeno, and freshness from the lime juice and cilantro.

When you’re planning your next margarita night, give this salsa recipe a try. It’s a delightful change.

Salsa made with rhubarb, jalapenos, onion, and cilantro

Rhubarb Salsa

Michele Pesula Kuegler

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes

Course Appetizer



  • 1-½ cups diced rhubarb approximately 3 stalks
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ¾ cup diced green bell pepper approximately ½ medium pepper
  • ¼ cup minced jalapeno
  • cup diced sweet onion
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 2 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
  • Salt & pepper



  • Heat nonstick frying pan over medium heat.
  • Add diced rhubarb, and sauté for 2 minutes
  • Sprinkle with sugar, and sauté for additional minute
  • Transfer to mixing bowl.
  • Add pepper, jalapeno, onion, lime juice, and cilantro; toss well.
  • Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Keyword mexican food, rhubarb, rhubarb salsa, salsa, salsa recipe
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