Any tostada fans out there? If you love tacos, you’ll love tostadas. Tostadas are basically flat tacos with a crispy tortilla base. They’re a little messy to eat—don’t order them on a first date—but so fun and satisfying.
This recipe comes from my friend Maria’s new book, the Two Peas & Their Pod Cookbook (affiliate link). Her beautiful book offers approachable and fresh, everyday recipes that are perfect for busy families.
I knew this recipe would be great because these tostadas share all of the same qualities of a great taco: something hearty (refried beans), something creamy (avocado), something crisp (shredded cabbage and jicama), something tangy (pickled onions), and lots of fresh flavors.
The best part? Maria designed this recipe to be quick and easy enough for a regular weeknight. You could make them today!
Two Peas & Their Pod Cookbook
Two Peas & Their Pod Cookbook: Favorite Everyday Recipes from Our Family Kitchen offers 115 family-friendly recipes with vibrant photos, plus party menus and cooking tips. This tostada recipe comes from the Vegetarian Main Dishes chapter.
Maria is a vegetarian and her husband, Josh, is not, so this book is perfect for blended families or those trying to eat less meat. Here are just a few recipes I’ve bookmarked to try:
- Kale and Wild Rice Salad with Maple-Mustard Vinaigrette
- Mushroom-Farro Soup
- Stir-Fried Snap Peas with Orange, Ginger and Sesame Seeds
- Enchilada-Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
- Pesto-Havarti Mac and Cheese
Maria is famous for her homemade cookies, so you’ll find a bunch of delicious cookies (and desserts) in the back of the book.
These vegetarian tostadas (which are easily made vegan if you omit the cheese) are layered with several components. Maria’s techniques help these tostadas come together quickly.
Crispy Baked Tortillas
Be sure to use 100 percent corn tortillas so your tostadas turn out nice and crispy. I’ve made the mistake of trying to use a corn and wheat flour blend, and they never crisped up!
Beans make these tostadas hearty enough to fill you up, offering protein fiber. Maria suggests buying vegetarian refried beans. I’m an over-achiever and decided to make my own with canned beans.
This is basically simplified guacamole, and offers a wonderfully creamy component. You’ll mash up some avocados, stir in lime juice and add salt, to taste. Easy!
This slaw is made with shredded green cabbage, crisp jicama, cilantro, lime juice, cumin, and chili powder. It’s simple to prepare and makes the perfect refreshing topper. (Jicama is a root vegetable that is delightfully crisp and mild in flavor. If you can’t find it, simply add more cabbage.)
Lightly Pickled Red Onions
We’ll stir some lime juice and vinegar into sliced onions, and let them rest. By the time the remaining components are ready to go, the onions will be lightly softened, mellowed in flavor, and pickled.
Grape Tomatoes and Queso Fresco
A handful of grape tomatoes (or cherry tomatoes) and some crumbled queso fresco finish off these tostadas. Queso fresco is a mild, creamy, crumbly Mexican cheese. Feta cheese is a good substitute if you can’t find it. Feta is more salty and tangy.
Tostada Tips & Notes
Traditional tostadas are made with fried tortillas; these are baked. I don’t like to deep fry at home, and corn tortillas bake up nice and crisp, anyway.
These tostadas are lighter than deep-fried alternatives since you’re brushing the tortillas with olive oil or spritzing them with cooking spray. (Primal Kitchen’s avocado oil spray is a great option for high heat and has no additives.)
Adjust these tostadas to taste. Lime juice and salt are key seasonings in this recipe, so be sure to use enough of each to make the flavors sing.
If you plan to have leftovers: Tostadas components are best stored separately before assembling. Store leftover mashed avocado with plastic wrap pressed against the surface, or save your avocado and mash it just before serving. Reheat the beans before assembling.
Please let us know in the comments how your tostadas turn out, and be sure to check out Maria’s book!
Crispy Bean Tostadas with Smashed Avocado and Jicama-Cilantro Slaw
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 10 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: 3 to 6 servings 1x
- Category: Main dish
- Method: Baked
- Cuisine: Mexican
These Mexican tostadas feature refried beans, avocado and cabbage slaw on crisp, baked corn tortillas. This tostada recipe is easy, filling and meatless! Recipe yields 6 hearty tostadas, enough for 3 to 6 servings.
Pickled red onions
- ½ medium red onion, thinly sliced
- Juice of 1 lime
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- Pinch of salt
- 2 cups shredded green cabbage
- ½ cup fresh cilantro leaves
- ½ cup ¼-inch-thick slices peeled jicama, or additional shredded cabbage
- Juice of 1 lime
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon chili powder
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 6 corn tortillas
- Extra-virgin olive oil or cooking spray
- Salt, to taste
- 2 cans (16 ounces each) vegetarian refried beans, or 1 batch homemade refried beans
- 3 large ripe avocados, pitted and peeled
- Juice of 1 lime
- ½ cup halved grape tomatoes
- ½ cup crumbled queso fresco or feta cheese
- Make the pickled onions: In a medium bowl, combine the sliced onions with the lime juice, vinegar and salt and stir until the onions are well coated. Let the onions sit while you make the slaw and tostadas. The pickled onions can be stored in a jar in the fridge for up to 1 week.
- Make the slaw: In a large bowl, combine the cabbage, cilantro, jicama, lime juice, cumin and chili powder. Season with salt and pepper to taste, and set aside.
- Assemble the tostadas: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Brush or spray both sides of each tortilla generously with olive oil or cooking spray, season with salt, and arrange in a single layer on a large baking sheet. Bake for 4 minutes, then flip and bake for 4 to 8 more minutes, until the tortillas are crispy.
- Gently heat the refried beans in the microwave or on the stovetop. In a large bowl, mash the avocados with a fork or potato masher. Stir in the lime juice and season with salt, to taste.
- Spread refried beans evenly over each tortilla. Add a layer of smashed avocado and top with the slaw, pickled onions, tomatoes and queso fresco. Serve immediately.
This recipe comes from Two Peas & Their Pod Cookbook by Maria Lichty.
Make it dairy free/vegan: Omit the cheese.
Make it gluten free: Be sure to buy 100% corn certified gluten-free tortillas.
Make it tomato free: Skip ’em!