This fresh salsa is bursting with fresh, juicy pineapple, bell peppers, and spicy habaneros. Combined with lots of fresh cilantro and lime, this sweet, fruity salsa has a kick of spice and is delicious with a bowl of tortilla chips or as a topping for tacos, chicken, or fish. Enjoy it fresh and chunky, or puree it in a food processor for a smoother sauce.
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What is Mango Habanero Salsa?
Pineapple habanero salsa is a delicious dish of fresh ingredients that can be used as a snack, side dish, or condiment.
The combination of sweet pineapple, savoury onion, cilantro, and spicy habanero peppers create a sweet and spicy dish that is perfect with a big bowl of salty tortilla chips or a topping for chicken, shrimp or tacos.
This salsa is made without tomatoes, instead allowing the pineapple and habanero to shine, but you could always add some diced Roma or cherry tomatoes if you prefer.
I like to keep my salsas chunky, but you can definitely puree this salsa if you prefer. Simply place the diced ingredients in a blender or food processor and pulse until it has reached your desired consistency.
You don’t need to be precise with the ingredients, and you can use as much or as little of each as you like.
What makes this salsa so spicy is the habanero peppers. Habanero peppers are small peppers with a slightly fruity flavour and are super spicy. They are far spicier than jalapeno peppers, and you will want to handle them with care. You can use as few or as many as you like, depending on how hot you like your salsa to be. If you want a less spicy salsa, you could use jalapeno peppers instead.
For a full list of ingredients and measurements, see the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.
Pineapple – You want to use fresh pineapple for this recipe. You will need about half of a large pineapple.
Bell pepper – Whatever colour you like. I prefer to use red, yellow or orange bell peppers over green for this recipe, as the sweeter flavour works better with the pineapple. But you are free to use whatever you prefer.
Red onion – Red onion is milder than white onion, and the flavour works well in fresh dishes such as salsas and salads.
Cilantro – Cilantro is a common ingredient in salsa and the fresh herb’s flavour pairs well with the acidic pineapple. If you are someone who doesn’t like cilantro, you can omit this ingredient.
Habanero peppers – Habanero peppers are fruity and spicy. These little peppers pack a punch of heat. You can use as few or as many as you like. Remove the seeds for a milder salsa; leave them in if you like things extra spicy.
Lime juice – A little bit of lime juice brings everything together, brightens the flavours and helps keep the fruit and vegetables fresh. Use freshly squeezed lime for the best results.
Step by Step Instructions
Cut the pineapple in half, remove the rind and core, and then dice it into small pieces. You will need about half of a large pineapple for two and a half cups of diced.
Dice the bell pepper and finely dice the red onion, then add the pineapple, bell peppers and onion to a medium-sized bowl.
Next, roughly chop the cilantro and add it to the diced ingredients.
Carefully remove the stem and seeds from the habanero peppers and dice them very finely and add them to the bowl.
Squeeze the fresh lime over the diced ingredients and then stir to combine.
Pro-Tip: Use caution when handling habanero peppers. You are highly recommended to use gloves while cutting and seeding peppers as the oil in the peppers can cause burns, especially if you use them in large batches. Wash your hands thoroughly after handling hot peppers, and be sure not to touch your face.
Pro-Tip: If you want your habanero salsa extra spicy, you can leave the seeds in the peppers rather than remove them.
Selecting and Handling Habanero Peppers
- When choosing fresh habanero peppers, look for habaneros with bright-coloured fruit, bright green stem and a firm shape. Avoid wrinkled, soft, and bruised peppers if possible.
- Like all peppers and fresh produce, Habanero peppers vary widely in flavour. The flavour and spice level will depend on where they were grown when they were picked, freshness, size, and the individual variety.
- Handle fresh peppers with caution. Hot peppers contain an oil called capsaicin. It is this oil that makes the peppers hot. While it is found everywhere in the pepper, it is more concentrated in the white membrane and seeds found inside. This oil can burn your skin and will cause irritation to eyes, nose and throat. For that reason, it is recommended that you wear gloves when chopping habaneros, wash your hands well, and do not touch your face.
- If you have leftover habanero peppers, they can be frozen whole in ziplock bags. They should keep for several months.
One thing I absolutely love about this salsa is the endless ways to serve it.
Of course, one of my favourite ways is to keep it simple and serve it with a huge bowl of crunchy, salty tortilla chips.
This fruity salsa is also delicious on tacos. The sweet and spicy combination of pineapple and habanero peppers goes especially well on chicken, fish or shrimp tacos.
You could also serve it on top of grilled chicken breast.
Leftover salsa can be stored in airtight containers in the refrigerator. It should last about five days.
Top Tips & FAQS
- Use caution when handling fresh peppers. Gloves are recommended while chopping peppers and be careful not to touch your face.
This salsa can be stored in an airtight container for about five days in the refrigerator.
We do not recommend freezing this salsa. It is best eaten fresh or stored in the refrigerator for up to five days.
More Spicy Recipes
Pineapple Habanero Salsa
- 2 ½ cups diced pineapple
- ¼ cup diced red onion
- 1 cup diced bell pepper
- ½ cup chopped cilantro
- 3-4 habanero peppers seeded and diced
- 1-2 tablespoon lime juice
- salt to taste
- Cut the pineapple in half and remove the rind and core. Dice the pineapple into small pieces. You will need approximately ½ of a large pineapple for 2.5 cups.
- Dice the red onion and bell pepper, and roughly chop the cilantro. Add to a bowl along with the pineapple
- Carefully remove the stem and seeds from the habanero peppers and dice them very small. Add to the bowl with the other ingredients.
- Add 1-2 tablespoons of lime juice to the bowl and stir to combine the ingredients. Add salt to taste, if desired.
- You don’t need to be precise with the ingredients. You can use as much or as little of each as you like.
- This recipe will make approximately 6 (½ cup) servings
- Use caution when handling fresh peppers. Gloves are recommended while chopping peppers; be careful not to touch your face.
- If you prefer pureed salsa, you can simply place the diced ingredients in a food processor or blender and pulse until it reaches your desired consistency.
Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content will vary with brands used, measuring methods, portion sizes and more.