Regional News

Apr 2024

Investor Spotlight: Salsa De Leon

Staff Reports

Salsa De Leon is a family-owned and operated business located in Canyon Lake, Texas. They have been crafting and sharing their salsa with family and friends for more than 20 years. The product line includes three roasted salsas: Texas Mild, Hot and Habanero Hot. They use fresh ingredients in their salsa, and they do not use fillers or vinegar, and they are low in sodium and sugar.  

In March 2024, Salsa De Leon was inducted into the H-E-B Hall of Fame Million Dollar Club and awarded the esteemed belt buckle for achieving over one million dollars in sales (+$1.4M). Salsa De Leon is one of only fifty-five H-E-B Quest for Texas Best suppliers to achieve this sales mark since the contest started ten years ago. 


Tell us a little bit about Salsa De Leon and your presence in the Greater San Antonio region.  

The recipes for Salsa De Leon are not old family recipes. They were not handed down from generation to generation. In fact, the recipes for Salsa De Leon were created by my husband, Armando and I, Leticia De Leon in our home over 20 years ago. Armando was the chef and I the quality control department (A.K.A. “Taste Tester”). As we crafted and shared our salsa over the years, we were encouraged by friends, family, and co-workers to bottle and sell our salsa.  

In 2017, we decided there was only one way to find out if people would buy our products. We began our research to form our business and get certified as a manufacturer. We converted our family game room into a commercial kitchen that met the production needs and our budget. We began to manufacture our products after our regular job hours until two or three in the morning while still balancing our kids’ school and sports schedules. 

Soon, we were meeting people in grocery and day care parking lots. Carrying it with us in our vehicles and even to the kids’ games. We began to sell at venues and farmer markets in South and Central Texas. People were buying our salsa! It was at one of the local markets that a small grocery store picked up our product line, with a few more stores to follow. We approached H-E-B, but it was not our time. We followed up with several more attempts and instead we were invited to attend an H-E-B Supplier Diversity Exchange. 

Months later, Salsa De Leon was picked up as a Direct Store Delivery (DSD) vendor for H-E-B. This was a huge challenge and just what we needed, an opportunity. As a DSD vendor, we were responsible for setting up meetings with the store manager of every store we wanted to enter. If we were approved, we would be responsible for delivering, stocking, and maintaining inventory on side caps, end caps or small shelves in each store. We eventually worked our way into H-E-B stores in the Gulf Coast, San Antonio, Austin, and the Hill Country regions.   

We were soon driving hundreds of miles each week, manufacturing, distributing, sales and maintaining an active family life. At the end of 2019, we received the call we had worked so hard for. H-E-B offered to include Salsa De Leon as part of their statewide set. We made it on to the shelves in May 2020! We survived the pandemic and so many challenges that have surfaced along our journey.  


How do you see yourself growing in the future and continue positively impacting our Greater San Antonio region? 

Salsa De Leon can be found in H-E-B stores across the state of Texas. As we continue to grow our brand and strive to be leaders in the food industry our goal is to manufacture and distribute high quality products from a facility in the San Antonio region. This will enable us to contribute to the economic development of the community, as a crucial part of the food manufacturing industry. 


How would you like to see the San Antonio region continue to grow? 

As the San Antonio region attracts more companies, it is crucial for our region to strengthen and enhance the local and existing workforce that will contribute to the overall economic development. The creation of jobs and training programs is phenomenal, but making them easily accessible to our local communities, high school programs and workforce programs will create opportunities that can be life changing or even create a generational change for many families. Let us hire locally instead of relocating personnel from other states or hiring overseas.  

Is there anything else you’d like to share?  

As native San Antonians and first-year investors of greater:SATX, Salsa De Leon is proud to be part of such an impactful organization within our local communities. Our family has always been involved in and given back to our local community. This program is a perfect match for us. Thank you for accepting us into the program.  

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