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Meatless Monday Tostadas

Updated on August 15, 2011

Meatless Monday Tostadas

We don't always eat veg on Mondays, but today we are making tostadas. Mostly homemade and homegrown, this recipe is super simple, even if the pinto beans take a while to cook.

Tostadas are a flat, fried corn tortilla topped with beans, cheese, vegetables and hot sauce or salsa. Today I am using some left over guajillo chile sauce, Monterey Jack cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, homemade slow-cooked pinto beans and some onions and green peppers from the garden.

The pinto beans take the longest. You can soak them overnight, rinse them in the morning and cook them in a slow cooker or simmer them on the stove until they are tender and the liquid starts to thicken.

Cooking Pinto Beans

1 pound dry pinto beans


1 clove garlic, peeled

salt to taste

2 tablespoons canola oil

1/2 cup each diced carrots, celery and onions (optional)

Combine soaked and rinsed beans, garlic, salt in a large pot. Add water to cover the beans at least one inch.

Cook the diced carrots, onions and celery in the canola oil until tender. Add to the beans.

Bring the beans to a boil, reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 2 to 3 hours or until tender. Stir the beans occasionally to keep them from burning on the bottom of the pan.

Making Tostadas


Corn tortillas

Canola oil

Shredded lettuce or cabbage

Diced tomatoes

Chopped fresh cilantro

Diced onions

Diced green chiles or sweet bell peppers (fire roast before dicing for extra good flavor)

Shredded Jack or Cheddar cheese, cotija or queso fresco

Heat 2 inches of oil to 350 degrees in a heavy pan.

Fry corn tortillas, one or two at a time until crisp and golden on both sides.

Drain the tortillas on a rack.

Assemble the tostadas:

Spread pinto beans on fried corn tortillas. Top with fresh chopped or roasted vegetables, shredded lettuce or green cabbage, tomatoes, salsa or red chile sauce. (recipe below)

Serve with lots of napkins because these can get messy. For a fun and easy buffet style dinner, set up a tostada bar and let everyone serve themselves.

Red Chile Sauce

  • 4 to 5 dried, red guajillo chiles
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 to 3 large tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 clove fresh garlic peeled
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Remove the stems and seeds from the hciles.
  2. Combine the guajillo chiles and water in a saucepan. Simmer covered over medium heat until the chiles are soft.
  3. Remove the chiles from the water, reserve the water. Blend the chiles, tomatoes, cumin and garlic with 1/4 cup of the reserved water until smooth.
  4. Simmer the blended sauce over a low heat until bubbling. Remove from heat and serve on tostadas, chile rellenos or enchiladas.


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    • Recipe Gal profile image

      Recipe Gal 6 years ago

      This looks like a good recipe! While I try to cook a vegetarian dinner at least once a week, I struggle to find recipes that are hearty enough and sound normal enough for my husband. I think he would really like what you have here. I'll add it to the list of things to cook for next week!

    • Julie McM profile image

      Julie McM 6 years ago from Southern California

      Thanks jwhitman. I hope you enjoy. The chile sauce is so easy to make and so delicious. You can use any dried, red chile (California, Anaheim or Guajillo), whatever the market has or you can grow and dry them yourself. I used to buy them, but I saved some seeds from the store bought ones and now I grow them myself.

    • jwhitman profile image

      jwhitman 6 years ago from Albany, New York

      Yummy! This sounds delicious! I've never made my own chili sauce before and am glad you posted a recipe detailing how to do it.