Strawberry Salsa with
Cinnamon-Sweet Baked Tortilla Chips

The story of Strawberry Bill, my great grandfather, an excuse to share a great low-calorie, low-point appetizer, snack or dessert.

Strawberry Salsa with Sweet-Cinnamon Baked Tortilla Chips
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“Strawberry Bill” he was called, my Great Grandfather Gossard. He kept ten acres of berries in Webster City, where June was the big month for strawberry-picking in early-1900s Iowa. Late in life, my Gramma Kellogg, his daughter, wrote about Iowa strawberries in a memory book called “Stories for My Grandchildren.”

At sunup, she wrote, local women and children pinned on their straw hats to commence picking, Gramma and her sister Miriam too. The pay was 2 cents a quart. “No one got rich picking berries. A dollar a day was fair pay for work at that time.”

As the sun grew warm, the fragrance of the berries was intoxicating. Every now and then, Gramma wrote, a luscious-looking berry was too tempting and she would pop it into her mouth.

By late morning, berries were boxed for delivery to local grocers. Afternoons, Miriam pulled a little red wagon through town, selling just-picked strawberries door-to-door.

Years later, my dad sold berries door-to-door too. He remembers one woman’s hesitation. “The berries are just beautiful,” she said ruefully. “But they’re just too much money.” A quart of sun-ripe, sun-warm berries was a dime.

Strawberry Bill worked at the post office too. His government salary kept the family but the strawberries, story goes, put my gramma and her sister through college. His post office shifts left the berries unattended for a few hours and at the mercy of young boys from town who were, Gramma wrote, “thoroughly familiar with his work habits.” Years later, one remembered Strawberry Bill. “Best strawberries I ever tasted, those I stole at night from Mr. Gossard’s patch.”

On Sunday, I picked up a flat of home-grown berries from a roadside stand in Illinois and it got me to thinking about berry-picking a century ago, when my great grandfather was known as Strawberry Bill. Home, I worked through one quart after another, making two batches of strawberry jam, a bowlful of Strawberry Salsa and freezing some berries for later.

But the real treat was last night, shared with my dad who’s visiting for a few days, a five-generation Iowa tradition: Strawberry Shortcake Iowa-Style, not for dessert, for dinner.

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Do you have a favorite recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. Follow Kitchen Parade on Facebook!


Hands-on time: 30 minutes
Time to table: 30 minutes
Makes 4 cups salsa and 5+ dozen chips
  • 8 6-inch flour tortillas
  • Cooking spray, butter-flavored
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 12 ounces fresh strawberries, stems removed, sliced vertically
  • 2 kiwi fruit, peeled and chopped
  • 1 apple, skin on, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons honey or agave syrup
  • Zest of a lime
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • Fresh mint, to garnish

BAKED TORTILLA CHIPS Preheat oven to 375F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone liner or parchment.

Stack the tortillas. To yield 8 chips per tortilla, slice in quarters, then each quarter in half. Arrange the chips in a single layer (this-way-thatta-way for most efficient use of space) on one or more baking sheets. Spray with cooking spray. Stir together cinnamon and sugar together, then with your fingers, sprinkle over each chip. Bake until brown and crisp, about 15 minutes.

Can be made ahead, just let cool and transfer to a ziplock bag.

STRAWBERRY SALSA Mix all ingredients. If needed, chill for 1 – 2 hours before serving.

TO SERVE Place salsa in bowl with chips alongside.

CHIPS ONLY Per 8 chips: 86 Calories; 2g Tot Fat; 1g Sat Fat; 0mg Cholesterol; 250mg Sodium; 16g Carb; 1g Fiber; 3g Sugar; 2g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS Old Points 1.5, PointsPlus 2
SALSA ONLY Per 1/2 cup: 53 Calories; 0g Tot Fat; 0g Sat Fat; 0mg Cholesterol; 1mg Sodium; 14g Carb; 2g Fiber; 11g Sugar; 1g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS Old Points .5, PointsPlus 1
COMBINED Per Serving, assumes 8 servings: 139 Calories; 2g Tot Fat; 1g Sat Fat; 0mg Cholesterol; 251mg Sodium; 29g Carb; 3g Fiber; 13g Sugar; 3g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS Old Points 2, PointsPlus 4
Adapted from McCormick

ALANNA’s TIPS The bad news: I had high hopes that healthier corn tortillas would make awesome savory-sweet chips. No such luck. The good news: the flour tortillas are very, very good! Depending on your sweet tooth and the sweetness of the berries, you may want to add a little sugar to the salsa. But sugar will macerate the berries, making the salsa more juicy. Chop the berries, kiwi and apple small, otherwise the pieces will be too big for small chips. Home-grown berries will stain the kiwi so if making the salsa ahead of time, add the kiwi just before serving. For a “mini chip” of sweetness, cut each tortilla in 12 small wedges, great for serving alongside a salad or even a fruity dessert but too small for salsa.

This Week, Years Past 2002 - 2011

Chameleon Ice Cream Rhubarb Sorbet Raspberry Morning Cake Strawberry Banana Chocolate Crumble Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler Poppy Seed Cake Recipes Fish with Herb Butter Herb-Coated Broiled Fish

This Week, Elsewhere

Strawberry Poppy Seed Salad from Benton Park Cafe
My Column in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Chunky 'Choke & Chickpea Chow
A Veggie Venture

More Recipes for the Season's Best Strawberries

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Strawberry Pepper Salad Chocolate Cream Puffs Stuffed with Strawberries & Cream Mojito Strawberries

Shop Your Pantry First

(helping home cooks save money on groceries)

© Copyright 2012 Kitchen Parade

Alanna Kellogg
Alanna Kellogg

A Veggie Venture is home of "veggie evangelist" Alanna Kellogg and the famous asparagus-to-zucchini Alphabet of Vegetables.


  1. This post is as sweet as the berries you describe, Alanna. My best wishes to your Dad and I hope he enjoys his stay in STL.

  2. Anonymous5/10/2012

    I have been making something similar this year with my salsa including strawberries, kiwi, blueberries and pears. I didn't like to worry about the apple turning brown. I mix my fruit with apricot preserves, then serve with the chips. I'll be giving your version a try, too, since this is my go-to snack/appetizer for parties, brunch and barbeques this year. I'm highly recommending this without even trying your version!

  3. Khadijah5/12/2012

    This was delish! Thanks for the great recipe. I used a Granny Smith apple and bottled lime juice and 1/3 teaspoon dried mint, and omitted the zest, based on what I had available. I could eat this with a spoon, and I probably will. I haven't made the chips yet, but I'm planning on using whole pita tortillas, which taste a bit like graham crackers when you make them into chips.

  4. Really interesting post. I like making salsas out of all sorts of fruit, but usually mine are spicy - never thought to take mine in a sweet direction, and definitely never thought of making sweet tortilla chips. I'm not going to do it, but I wonder if you made homemade corn tortillas, and included sugar & cinnamon in the recipe, if that would give you the sweet flavor you want plus the health benefits of the corn tortillas. Anyway, really enjoyed this post + recipe - thanks.


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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna