Cantaloupe Habanero Salsa ~ this unique salsa is delightful ~ I used a juicy ripe melon, lots of colorful veggies, fresh cilantro, and a super fiery habanero pepper for a powerhouse salsa that gets everybody excited!

Lately I’ve been trying to remember not to toss away labels and wrappers too quickly.  The other day I bought a bunch of organic cilantro and as I was throwing away the tag I happened to see that there was a recipe for cantaloupe salsa printed on it.  Lots of foods come with recipes printed on their tags, or on the underside of labels, etc., and I’ve actually found some pretty good ones that way.  I had already decided on grilled tilapia for dinner, so the idea of a new kind of salsa to go with it sounded perfect.

We’re heading into salsa season, and I couldn’t be more excited.  They’re so easy and they’re so healthy, but the main reason I can’t stop making them is the burst of flavor they add to everything. Not to mention that they give me an excuse to eat the leftovers with chips.  I also like making salsas because I get to play with color…do I want to use a red, yellow, or orange pepper with the melon?  Purple onion or green?  The colors are just as important as the flavors, and they make a plate of healthy but bland fish or chicken a lot more lively.

Cantaloupes are cheap right now, which pretty much tells you they’ll be ripe and delicious, but I think lots of different melons would work here, so experiment with what you see at your market. There’s nothing more cooling than a sweet juicy melon.  Nothing more fiery hot than a habanero pepper.  Put the two together and you’ve got a really interesting salsa.  It takes only minutes to put together, try it!

Inspired by the cilantro label, here’s my interpretation of a great melon salsa—

Cantaloupe Habanero Salsa


  • 1/2 ripe cantaloupe melon, sliced and cut into a small dice
  • 1/2 habanero pepper, seeded and finely diced (use a whole one if you're brave)
  • 1/4 large red onion, diced
  • 1/2 medium yellow pepper, diced
  • 1 handful cilantro,finely chopped
  • juice of 1 lime
  • salt and fresh cracked black pepper


  1. This is one salsa that I don't make in the mini processor. The melon just looks more appealing diced. Try to get everything diced into a similar size.
  2. Mix everything together in a bowl and check the seasoning. Refrigerate till ready to use. Check the seasonings again just before serving, it might need salt, or more lime juice.


  • I originally used a whole seeded habanero for my salsa, and it was very very hot.  I cut down the amount in the recipe to half a pepper.  And be sure to wash well after chopping the habanero, the hot oils are very powerful and you don’t want to accidentally rub your eye after working with one of these guys. Even the insides of my fingernails were burning!

We topped grilled tilapia with our salsa, but if I have any leftover I’m going to break open the chips.

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19 Responses to Cantaloupe Habanero Salsa

  1. This is my kind of salsa. Love the kick of heat with the sweet fruit. You always make things look so pretty.

  2. What a great idea for salsa! Gotta try this.

  3. grace says:

    i enjoy fruits in my salsa, and this is so frickin’ colorful, i almost can’t stand it!

  4. Thanks all, I made it again last night and it was equally good with chips as it was on the fish. The second time around I used 1/2 the habanero and it wasn’t very spicy at all. I guess hot peppers really vary in their heat, and you can’t predict how they will be until you take that first bite.

  5. Beautiful pictures! I would never have thought to use melon in salsa. I’m off to find a cantaloupe!

  6. Lea Ann says:

    I have found some great little recipes hiding on the inside of can labels, jar labels, etc. I agree, I try to remember to look closely. I love this recipe! Pinning!

  7. I love the combo of fish and fruit salsas – it’s so summery. I would eat this meal anyday. And yes, I’ve actually found some great recipes that way, as well. I have one snipped from the middle of a “tag” that wrapped around my radicchio the other day just waiting to be made!

  8. Pencil Kitchen says:

    honeydew is the one and only fruit i can’t eat. But aside from that, this will be one heck of a meal. I’m looking at those cous cous with a slight hope that I could take them out of the computer screen

  9. Miranda says:

    That entire meal is beautiful. Kudos!

  10. ming says:

    Is that Israeli Couscous you are serving with the fish?

    Salsa looks great!

  11. Yum! I am loving fruit salsas these days. A friend made a mango salsa for us the other evening but this is looking wonderful and different!

  12. Cantaloupe in salsa! I’ve often had mango salsa, but of course a melon would work just as well. I’ll have to give this a try–we have a new fish store in town, so now I have an excuse to do some shopping. I may have to skip the habanero for a milder jalapeno since my husband isn’t a fan of firey hot foods.

  13. Mary says:

    This sounds amazing! I am really loving the cool sweet and spicy combinations this year. What a great recipe find.

  14. Kathy says:

    I love fruit salsa…this one looks wonderfully delicious…i bet it was great with the tilapia!

  15. Claudia says:

    Love fruit salsa – noting this. And will check to make sure I don’t toss grand recipes!

  16. What an interesting salsa recipe. I don’t believe I have ever come a cross one using cantaloupe!

  17. Rose says:

    Habanero… my favourite pepper! :)

  18. Mmmm—that looks and sounds so delectable! Can’t wait to try it!

  19. What a delectable recipe, my marmalade and jam recipes both come from packets/tags, they are a great recourse, I usually photocopy onto A4 and keep in a file. (I really must find a new printer, scanner and I could then save on my pc)

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