Bean and Cheese Tostadas are piled high with fresh veggies and topped with guacamole and sour cream. They’re like an unrolled burrito with the crunch of a taco. Try eating just one!
We are brand new to the world of tostadas. But, I’m glad I learned about them, because they are quick and easy to prepare, they pack a good amount of heartiness, so you feel full, and they are inexpensive, adaptable, and super delicious! I’ve discovered that Bean and Cheese Tostadas have characteristics that are common to a burrito and a taco. So good!
I made this particular dish on the weekend. John.e was at the house alone, and I stayed here in the city with McKenna and the cats. It’s unfortunate that he didn’t get to have any when they came out of the oven. (That’s the best way to eat them with that gooey cheese and the warm refried beans!) Don’t try to make this dish ahead of time. Do all of the prep, but don’t bake the tostada and expect it to still be crunchy!
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WHAT ARE TOSTADAS?
Tostada is a Spanish word that means toasted, but in Mexico, tostada is more specifically a term that refers to a type of dish. A tostada is usually a flat or bowl-shaped tortilla that has been deep fried or toasted until crispy.
The tostada is then used as a base for a number of dishes, or it can be eaten just the way it is. I ate one or two of the tostadas without anything on them at all when I preparing this dish. They’re quite delicious just the way they are, but spectacular when topped with Mexican-inspired ingredients.
INGREDIENTS NEEDED TO PREPARE THIS RECIPE
The following is a list of the ingredients needed to prepare this recipe. For exact amounts and measurements, refer to the printable recipe card located near the bottom of this post.
- Tostadas – You can find these in most large chain grocery stores or in any Mexican or Spanish market too.
- Refried Beans – I use the stuff from a can for this. Bush’s has great refried beans!
- Cheese – Use your favourite melting cheese. I love sharp cheddar, but I would also consider colby jack or even my favourite habanero cheese!
- Corn – I used frozen corn. You can use canned corn if you have it. Just be sure to drain it well.
- Black Beans – Canned black beans must be rinsed and drained well too.
- Tomatoes – Be sure to remove the pulp and seeds to keep the tostada from getting soggy.
- Lettuce – Your favourite lettuce can be used here. I used iceberg, because it is traditionally used on these restaurant-type recipes.
- Cabbage – Red or green cabbage will do. It adds crunch and freshness. I used red for colour contrast.
- Guacamole – Store bought or make your own!
- Cayenne Pepper – Use as little or as much as you’d like for you own personal heat tolerance.
- Sour Cream
- Cilantro or Parsley – For garnish and freshness.
HOW TO MAKE BEAN AND CHEESE TOSTADAS
Preparing these is easy, but you can make it even easier by having all of the prep work done first. Here’s how I do it! Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and a wire rack. Set that aside. In the meanwhile, in a skillet, over medium-high heat, add the corn and sauté it until it blackens just slightly. (If you are using canned corn, it will not blacken as easily as frozen corn.) Once it’s done, remove it from the heat. Add the black beans and cayenne pepper. Stir to combine and set it aside.
Stir the refried beans until smooth. Spread about 2-3 tablespoons of the refried beans onto each tostada. Place the tostadas onto the baking sheet in a single layer. Do not overlap. Top each tostada with about 2-3 tablespoons of the shredded cheese and place the tostadas in the oven and bake for 3-5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
Remove the tostadas from the oven and top with the corn and black bean mixture. Evenly distribute all of this mixture evenly over the tostadas. Next, top each tostada evenly with the following ingredients in this order: iceberg lettuce, red cabbage, and tomatoes.
Place a dollop of guacamole onto the center of each tostada. Drizzle over the desired amount of sour cream, and evenly distribute the remaining cheese. Serve immediately with lime wedges and enjoy! (Garnish with chopped cilantro if you desire. I don’t like cilantro, so I used parsley.)
WHAT CAN I MAKE WITH A TOSTADA?
I’m glad you asked! First, let me start by saying that if you can’t find tostadas already prepared at your local grocery store, you can make your own. Basically, you can deep fry tortillas until crispy and firm, or you can spray each side with non-stick cooking spray and bake in your oven for a few minutes on each side at 450 degrees.
So, you can make any version of this Bean and Cheese Tostada that you prefer. You can add beef or pork if you want. You can add cilantro, radish, cojita, etc. The choice is yours.
You can also break them up and use them as nachos or tortilla chips. You can break them into even smaller pieces and add them to salads for some extra crunch and texture. Also, if you place tostadas in your food processor, you can use them as a bread/crumb topping for mac and cheese or a panko-topped casserole.
Once you get a taste of how great these Bean and Cheese Tostadas are though, you won’t spend much time looking for more tostada ideas. This is one recipe that is adaptable to every taste and preference. I guarantee you’re going to love them!
MORE TOPPING IDEAS
I loved the Bean and Cheese, but I’m up for just about anything when it’s on a tostada. Consider adding tuna salad and some diced tomatoes. Sprinkle over some black pepper and it’s delicious! Of course you can add shredded pork or beef too!
Did you know you can also enjoy tostadas for breakfast? Yes, it’s true! Lay the tostadas on a plate. Top with eggs that have been scrambled with fresh chopped chives. Top with crumbled bacon, diced tomato, shredded cheese, and a few dashes of hot sauce; sounds good, right?
Be sure to let me know how you like to top your tostadas. I’m looking for all sorts of interesting ideas and possibilities!
Do You Like This Recipe?
You should consider trying these other delicious recipes too!
Bean and Cheese Tostadas
- 6 whole tostadas
- 14 ounces canned refried beans
- 4 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
- 1 cup frozen corn
- 1 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 3 whole tomatoes, finely diced (pulp and seeds removed and discarded)
- 1 1/2 cups iceberg lettuce, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cups red cabbage, thinly sliced
- 1 cup guacamole
- 1/2 cup low fat sour cream
- 2 whole limes, quartered
- chopped cilantro or parsley, for garnish
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and a wire rack. Set aside.
- Meanwhile, in a skillet, over medium-high heat, add the corn and saute the corn until the corn blackens just slightly. Remove from the heat. Add the black beans and cayenne pepper. Stir to combine. Set aside.
- Stir the refried beans until smooth. Spread about 2-3 tablespoons of the refried beans onto each tostada. Place the tostadas onto the baking sheet in a single layer. Do not overlap.
- Top each tostada with about 2-3 tablespoons of the shredded cheese and place the tostadas in the oven and bake for 3-5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
- Remove the tostadas from the oven and top with the corn and black bean mixture. Evenly distribute all of this mixture evenly over the tostadas.
- Next, top each tostada evenly with the following ingredients in this order: iceberg lettuce, red cabbage, and tomatoes.
- Place a dollop of guacamole onto the center of each tostada. Drizzle over the desired amount of sour cream, and evenly distribute the remaining cheese.
- Serve immediately with lime wedges and enjoy! (Garnish with chopped cilantro if you desire. I don't like cilantro, so I used parsley.)
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