Pebre & Chancho en Piedra (Chilean Salsa)

When Natalya and I were recently traveling through Chile, we found the two most popular condiments restaurants served with their starter bread were a roasted red pepper purée and and Chancho en Piedra (Chilean salsa).  We were huge fans of the salsa as it complemented any foods, such as bread, empanadas, grilled meats, fish, and so on.

The base recipe of the salsa is known as Pebre, which is a Chilean condiment made of cilantro, chopped onion, olive oil, garlic and chile peppers.  Pebre is a sauce that is typically added to soups and stews, or it can used in the same fashion as ketchup.  Adding fresh chopped tomatoes turns Pebre into Chilean Salsa, or Chancho en Piedra (“Pig on a Rock”).  This salsa is very similar to Pico de Gallo and can be served as a dip, or combined with avocado to make Guacamole.

In our Chilean Cuisine Cooking Class, instead of chile peppers, we used a Chilean Mapuche seasoning mix called Merkén.  The seasoning is hot and very aromatic due to its use of smoked Cacho de Cabro (“goat’s horn”) pepper.  The dried pepper is mixed with salt, cumin, and coriander seeds.  I love the smokey flavors and we ended buying a few jars of Merkén to bring home with us!

Again, like in Ensalada Chilena, the tomatoes are usually peeled before dicing.  I have never found a skin-on tomato served anywhere in Chile.

Pebre & Chancho en Piedra (Chilean Salsa)


  • 1 bunch cilantro, finely sliced
  • 1 medium onions, finely diced
  • 2 green chiles, seeded and finely diced or Merkén
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 T olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 T white vinegar
  • 1 tomato, peeled and finely diced (for Chancho en Piedra)
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced


In a bowl add the oil, garlic, onion, coriander, tomato, chiles or merkén, and vinegar.  Add salt and pepper to taste. If necessary add a tablespoon of olive oil.  Serve at room temperature.

5 Responses to “Pebre & Chancho en Piedra (Chilean Salsa)”
  1. rdp says:

    No way this can be a picture of Pebre & Chancho made according to your recipe of one bunch of cilantro and one tomato. Sauce should be mostly GREEN, not red.

  2. I wonder if you are gettin gmy comments. I have been having such a hard time leaving them on your blog and a few others.

    • jdubs says:

      sorry for some reason wordpress is autofiltering into spam!! but i found them thanks for always leaving such lovely comments!!

  3. How lovely..I can just see using this with my empanadas. Wonderful pictures.

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