Costa Rican Salsa Rosada Recipe

costa rican pink sauce for dipping fried appetizers

The most delicious and most controversial condiment in the world is salsa rosada, and this Costa Rican appetizer recipe is to die for. Ketchup, mayonnaise and two secret ingredients combine into a salsa perfect for dipping any fried food, and so easy to make at home.

costa rican pink sauce for dipping fried appetizers

About This Recipe

So let’s get one thing straight- salsa rosada is decidedly not just a Costa Rican thing. It’s a Latin America thing- and I actually suspect that back in the day McDonald’s secret sauce was actually salsa rosada, or pink sauce.

The sauce itself has about as many names as it does dishes to slather on, (pink sauce, secret sauce, golf sauce recipe, fry sauce). Heinz recently had a ton of backlash when they tried to bottle this divine sauce up and call it Mayochup- a “brand new creation.” Sorry, Heinz, the originas of the condiment go back as far as rice and beans.

I digress, salsa rosada is a sauce combining ketchup and mayonaise. It’s generally used for dipping delicious fried treats such as yucca, french fries, chicharrones, hot dogs, Costa Rican tacos and more. In Costa Rica we even squirt it on our empanadas. I love to dip freshly made tortilla chips into it. It’s so good.

What makes the sauce so good though, is the huge variation of ketchup and mayo available throughout Latin America. Almost every country has its own national ketchup that tastes different, and many home cooks and restaurant chefs still make their own mayonnaise. This means the taste varies by region and country.

In Costa Rica, the ketchup is much sweeter than here- and it’s generally produced with cane sugar as opposed to beet sugar. the mayonnaise in Costa Rica is generally flavored with lime, and occasionally garlic.

So basically, when you combine Costa Rican ketchup with Costa Rican mayonnaise, you get Costa Rican salsa rosada. But- since I can’t get Costa Rican mayo or Costa Rican salsa de tomate here in the US, I’ve spent a good amount of time messing with the recipe to make it completely authentic. 

Other Sauce Recipes from Pura Vida Moms:

pink sauce for dipping food

Costa Rican Salsa Rosada Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 2 tsp granulated sugar
  • 4 tsp freshly squeezed lime juice

Instructions:

In a small bowl, place the granulated sugar. Squeeze your ketchup on top and mix. The sugar added here will decrease the acidity of the ketchup and make it act more like Costa Rican ketchup. Next add your mayo on top but don’t stir it. Squeeze the lime juice on top of the mayo, and stir everything together. 

Place in a squeeze bottle or in a small bowl and serve with your favorite fried food!

Substitutions

You can substitute brown sugar for the granulated sugar.

You can use Real Lime in this recipe and it doesn’t really make a difference.

You can definitely use homemade mayonnaise for this recipe, but I haven’t mastered it yet. (So close!)

fry sauce in small bowl

Variations

There are so many variations on salsa rosada– Colombians add cumin, Caribbeans add lots of pressed garlic, and I bet Mexicans make it spicy. Really the sky is the limit, and if you have a favorite variation I’d love to hear it!

Serving Suggestions

You can put this on anything, but we do have some traditional Costa Rican recipes that lend themselves more to dipping or squirting this sauce.

We generally will serve this in a small ramekin for dipping, or we will put it in a big squeeze bottle and squirt it all over a dish like French Fries or fried yucca. Some popular dishes that go with Salsa Rosada:

FAQ

Where can I buy salsa rosada? – Good question! You can always find it in the condiment aisle in Costa Rican supermarkets. I often find it in Latin grocery stores in the condiment aisle as well. I know that Goya makes a version but they call it Mayo Ketchup and you can find it on Amazon here.  

How do I store salsa rosada? – I store it in an airtight container in the fridge. It lasts forever. Except in our house, where when I make it it’s gone in seconds. 

Our Most Popular Costa Rican Recipes:

Printable Recipe

Yield: 1 cup

Costa Rican Salsa Rosada Recipe

Costa Rican Salsa Rosada Recipe

The most delicious and most controversial condiment in the world is salsa rosada, and this Costa Rican appetizer recipe is to die for. Ketchup, mayonnaise and two secret ingredients combine into a salsa perfect for dipping any fried food, and so easy to make at home.

Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 2 tsp granulated sugar
  • 4 tsp freshly squeezed lime juice

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl, place the granulated sugar.
  2. Squeeze your ketchup on top and mix. The sugar added here will decrease the acidity of the ketchup and make it act more like Costa Rican ketchup.
  3. Next add your mayo on top but don't stir it.
  4. Squeeze the lime juice on top of the mayo, and stir everything together. 
  5. Place in a squeeze bottle or in a small bowl and serve with your favorite fried food!

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 227Total Fat: 21gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 17gCholesterol: 12mgSodium: 447mgCarbohydrates: 11gFiber: 0gSugar: 9gProtein: 1g
Please double-check this information with your favorite nutrition calculator.

Don’t forget to pin it!

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2 Comments

  • Reply
    wilhelmina
    February 28, 2020 at 5:26 pm

    This sauce is good on so many things! I love dipping my fries in it!

  • Reply
    Katie
    February 28, 2020 at 11:19 pm

    Made it for the family and it was a hit!