Easy Homemade Pico de Gallo

There’s nothing better than fresh, homemade pico de gallo! You can make this recipe in minutes, and it pairs perfectly with any Mexican food dish. It’s also delicious on its own with a bag of chips! It amazes me how such a simple dip can add so much flavor.

If you’re planning out an entire meal, try out this pico de gallo with one of these Mexican main dishes:

Sheet Pan Chicken Fajitas

Tilapia Fish Tacos and Sauce

Chicken Enchiladas with Red Sauce

The Secret Ingredient

Pico de Gallo is so easy to make–you only need a handful of ingredients! Like most, this recipe includes tomatoes, onions, jalapeños, cilantro, garlic, lime juice, and salt. However, I add one other ingredient that makes a world of a difference–mandarin orange juice! Surprised?

I find that the sweet, citrusy flavor of mandarin orange juice is the perfect addition to this Mexican food dip! The flavors pair perfectly, in fact, I even add mandarin orange juice to my guacamole and chicken tortilla soup!

You may ask, why mandarin orange juice? Can I just use normal orange juice? I’ve found that some other oranges, like navel oranges, sometimes have a watered-down flavor. Mandarin oranges typically have a stronger flavor, and just the right amount of sweetness. Also, make sure to use freshly squeezed mandarin orange juice–pico de gallo needs ALL fresh ingredients!

Make this Homemade Pico de Gallo Mild OR Spicy

It’s easy to customize homemade pico de gallo to be as mild or spicy as you’d like! If you like it spicy, try leaving in the jalapeños’ membrane and seeds. That’s where the real heat is!

If you prefer super mild pico de gallo, you could leave out the jalapeños–however, the jalapeños add a smoky flavor that you don’t want to miss out on! If you remove the membrane and seeds in the jalapeños, your pico will turn out mild but still keep that smoky jalapeño flavor.

If you make this homemade pico de gallo, I’d LOVE to hear about it. You can leave a comment below the recipe, or if you post a picture on Instagram, be sure to tag me! Getting any feedback on my recipes is both rewarding AND helpful as I write and edit recipes in the future.

Easy Homemade Pico de Gallo

Recipe by Maddie Saxey
0.0 from 0 votes


Prep time






  • 5-6 tomatoes (roma or on the vine), diced*

  • 1 cup diced white onion

  • 1/2 cup diced jalapeño, seeds and white membrane removed** (about two jalapeños)

  • 1/4 cup finely diced cilantro, stems removed

  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic

  • 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice

  • 1 Tbsp fresh mandarin orange juice

  • 3/4 tsp fine sea salt


  • Add all the ingredients to a small bowl and mix well.
  • Cover, and refrigerate until serving. Enjoy!


  • *Use 6 tomatoes if they are on the smaller size (roma tomatoes are usually smaller than on the vine tomatoes).
  • **Leave some of the seeds and white membrane from the jalapeños if you want it to be spicy.
  • Refrigerate in a sealed container for up to three days.

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