Salsa roja, meaning simply “red salsa” in Spanish, is growing on menus as consumers crave more Latin flavors but also more authenticity in dishes from different cultures.
Salsa roja might go on a menu next to a salsa verde, or green salsa. It can be served with chips, as a topping for tacos or to be poured over enchiladas.
It’s one of many menu items growing in popularity as younger generations increasingly say they’d choose Latin/Mexican flavors over stalwarts like Italian if they could only eat one cuisine for the rest of their lives.
In a survey from market research firm Datassential, 82% of millennials and 75% of Gen Z named Mexican as their favorite cuisine, compared with Boomers and Gen X, a majority of whom chose Italian.
Datassential reports that salsa roja is found on 2% of U.S. menus, up 31% over the past four years.
Click through the gallery to learn more about this Flavor of the Week and see how one restaurant is using salsa roja on its menu.