Given the fact that I have a food blog and talk about food without even taking a breath, you probably already know that I love to cook. In fact, I enjoy it so much that I stare in blank amazement when people say they don’t enjoy cooking.
Having said that, on the hottest days (and nights) of summer, I appreciate a quick, easy, and no oven required meal. These tostadas are so quick and easy to pull together and there are endless options to “make them your own.” They’re also great for eating on a budget – especially if you make them meatless.
The Toppings Are Your Call:
- Refried Beans or Ground Beef w/Taco Seasoning
- Shredded Cheddar
- Mexican Crumbling Cheese
- Green Onions
- Shredded Lettuce
- Jalapeno Peppers
- Pico de Gallo
- Sour Cream
- Salsa Verde
- Black Olives
- Lime Juice
- Roasted Corn
- Roasted Red Peppers
The NON-Recipe for Refried Beans Tostadas
There’s No Need to Even Heat These Tostadas
It all starts with the base: the Tostada shells. I love the Guerrero Tostadas pictured above. They’re delicious and ridiculously inexpensive. That’s a combination I don’t take lightly.
Line a baking sheet (or several) with the number of tostadas you’ll be serving. There’s no need to heat the shells at all for tostadas.
Refried Beans: I use canned refried beans and am pretty darn brand-loyal. I buy Old El Paso Traditional Refried Beans almost exclusively. For 10 tostadas, I used two cans. Now you can use refried beans straight from the can for this recipe or to serve as is. However, I love to add a little water (couple of tablespoons) to the beans when I first add them to the skillet, along with about 1/2 tsp of cumin and a splash of hot sauce. In full disclosure, I add cumin to more things than not. In this particular dish, I also added 1/2 cup of sour cream to the beans. It makes them creamier and dreamier.
Cook the beans on low, stirring frequently. Season with a little salt.
Make Some with Avocado and Some Without: Just In Case Someone Isn’t a Fan
When the beans are nice and hot, plop them evenly among the tostada shells, spreading them to the edges. Top the hot beans with shredded cheddar cheese so it’ll melt irresistibly into them.
Now this is where you can really get cute. Add whatever floats your boat at this point. Cilantro, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, black olives, scallions, shallots… you do you!
I add different toppings just about every time I make tostadas but the cast of characters almost always includes cilantro, shredded lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, cheese, and avocado.
You’ll want to put the sour cream on top, if for no other reason than it looks cool. Finally, the thing that really seals the deal? Squeeze a little lime juice over the whole shebang.
I’m not sure why, exactly, but lime juice simply makes every single Mexican dish you can think of even better.
Ideas for Side Dishes:
- Tossed Salad
- Chips and Salsa
- Fried Potatoes