small Vidalia onion, sliced into 1/4-inch rings
medium red bell pepper, cut into large pieces
medium eggplant, peeled and cut into thin slices length-wise
soft taco-size Old El Paso™ flour tortillas
cup Old El Paso™ fat-free refried beans, warmed up
Heat your grill on its medium setting or prepare charcoals for grilling.
Spray the Vidalia onion slices on both sides with cooking oil spray (alternatively, they can be brushed with olive oil). Place on the grill and cook for 4-6 minutes per side, until browned and softened. Remove from grill.
Once you flip the Vidalia onions, spray the pepper slices and eggplant slices with cooking oil and add to the grill as well. Cook for 3-4 minutes per side until softened. The peppers will soften some, but remain firm overall.
Once all the vegetables have been cooked, spray both sides of the tortillas with cooking oil spray. Place on the grill and cook for 3-4 minutes per side until browned and puffed slightly. Remove from the grill. Tortillas will crisp upon standing.
Prepare the tostadas: Place one tortilla on each of four plates. Divide the refried beans evenly among the tortillas. Top with the prepared veggies. Sprinkle with cheese and salsa, as desired. Serve.
More About This Recipe
- My grill and I are like this because we spend a lot of time experimenting together. Can you cook breakfast on a grill? (Yes.) Dessert? (Yes.) My latest experiment involved seeing if I could turn a tortilla into a tostada shell merely by spraying it with cooking oil and grilling it. (YES!) I love when these experiments work out.Grilled Veggie Tostadas are easy to make. You grill up veggies until they are sweet and a just a little charred, giving them that great smoky flavor that you can only get from grilling.Then comes the fun part. You grill the tortillas until they are browned and puffy. Magically when you let them cool down, they harden into crispy, delicious shells. It’s awesome.Once that’s all done, you pile the tortillas high with refried beans, grilled veggies, cheese and salsa. These babies might look small at first, but they are pretty filling. However, if you have big eaters, you might want to make a double batch to ensure that there’s enough for everyone. Or serve these with a giant chopped salad.These are perfect for a lunch or a light dinner.
As I sat down and started to ponder the best way to introduce this recipe for butternut squash tostadas, I thought I came up with a good segue from how a past foray with BlueApron had led me to learn the virtues of veggie tostada recipes. Then I was like, didn't I write something like that before, and indeed I did, over a year ago, and I also chronicled in that post my failure to cancel the service, even though my wife and I no longer use it. That reminded me that I still have yet to cancel and that I needed to go in and skip the next month of deliveries, but first I perused the current offerings and nothing looked as good or interesting as these tostadas that I devised on my own were, leaving me feeling still more confident in my creative abilities rather than relying on BlueApron, which didn't take long for us to tire of after signing up.
I guess one plus of a meal delivery service is that you'll never put in as much work into a meal as these particular tostadas represent, but at the same time, you may never feel as satisfied with the end result. These tostadas certainly have their fair share of components, which makes it a somewhat lengthy recipe overall, even though no one single piece is that much of a challenge to cook, starting with these black beans that I made by first sautéing onions and garlic in butter, then adding in the beans and cumin before smashing everything into a creamy paste that would serve as the first layer of the final tostadas.
Next I made a green chili avocado salsa whose recipe I found on the very reliable salsa of Homesick Texan. The recipe began by roasting tomatillos and Anaheim peppers until they were soft and charred.
Then, after peeling the skin from the peppers, those two items went into a blender along with an avocado, cilantro, garlic, and lime juice and got pureed until smooth. The final salsa was amazing, with an excellent depth that was tart, spicy, fruity, earthy, creamy, and fresh tasting all at once.
I've seen packaged tostadas in the store before, so you could save a little time on this recipe by picking those up, but if you've ever made freshly fried tortilla chips before, you probably already know the virtues of making your own. Tortillas fry up quickly, so wasn't a huge time suck to cook about 24 street taco-sized tortillas for these, and I think to have to have the crunchiest, freshest tasting tostadas, it's totally worth any hassle frying represents.
We had two or three veggie tostadas over our time as active Blue Apron customers, all of them using orange vegetables, and all tasting incredible. Oven roasting was the method for those, but grilling adds even more flavor, so when I decided to use butternut squash for my recipe, I knew they had to flame-roasted. Prior to cooking though, I tossed my squash slices in oil and a chili-heavy seasoning mixture.
Then to grill them, I placed the rounds over indirect high heat and covered. I knew the squash would take a good 20 to 30 minutes to fully soften and brown, so I went back inside to prepare the rest of the toppings while it cooked.
The remainder of the toppers required me to the slice up some radishes super thin on my mandoline, finely chop up a bit of fresh cilantro, and place sour cream into a squeeze bottle to make application easier and faster later on.
At about the 20 minute mark of cooking, some squash slices were close to being done while others needed more time, so I rearranged them on grill accordingly, moving the more tender pieces further from the fire and the less done ones closer. I also flipped them for more even browning. After another 10 minutes or so, they were all very tender and had attractive caramelization, so I moved the squash slices to a cutting board and roughly diced them up.
Then to assemble the tostadas I first spread a layer of the mashed black beans on each fried tortilla and then topped them all with some pieces of butternut squash. Next I applied squeezes of the salsa and sour cream, then adorned each tostada with radish slices, cilantro, and finely grated cotija cheese.
While Blue Apron led to the idea of crafting some veggie tostadas for the blog, none that I ever got from the subscription meal service tasted as good or fully realized as these did. Taken altogether, these were a symphony of flavors and textures that worked incredibly well with one another. First came the crackling crunch of the corn tortilla which soon contrasted with the creamy beans and sweet squash. The salsa and sour cream next added spiciness and tang to the party while the cotija brought the salt, the radish a crisp and sharp bite, and the cilantro the boost of freshness that was started with by the avocado salsa. I wonder if this same time next year I'll be back saying once again that I have failed to cancel Blue Apron, which served a purpose for time to amp up my own creativity and desire to cook more balanced and veggie-focused meals, but really is no longer needed, even though it's literally been years now that I have failed to actually email them to ask them stop my subscription for good.
*Toasted Corn Tortillas:
(Find 4-inch tortillas in stores that stock Mexican foods.) Brush both sides of tortillas with 1 Tbsp. olive oil. Place on baking sheet. Heat in 425 degrees F oven 8 minutes or until golden. Or, after brushing with oil, grill directly over medium coals 30 seconds each side or until warmed.
Hot: 2 tsp. chili powderHotter: 3 tsp. hot chili powderHottest: 4 tsp. hot chili powder + hot-style BBQ sauce
Nutrition Facts (Grilled Vegetable Tostadas with Quick Mole Sauce)
Loaded Veggie Bean Tostadas
Celebrating Taco Tuesday with Tostadas! Veggie Bean Tostadas that boast Big flavor!
Sautéed peppers and onions seasoned with lime juice, refried black beans and jalepenos, quick and easy slaw, and sweet and spicy pickled onions, topped with queso fresco, sour cream-lime drizzle (I actually used an almond milk yogurt this time) & fresh cilantro.
Can’t tell you how delicious and savory this was! A perfect mix of zesty flavors and textures.
Recipe from America’s Test Kitchen Everyday Vegetarian magazine, it sounds complex but each topping was quite easy and took only about 30-40 minutes to prep total and there are left overs for the next day. And it could be prepped earlier in the day and heated up as I did today.
Scroll down to see the recipe.
Additional Recipes You May Enjoy
Recipe | Black Bean & Veggie Baked Tostadas
Published: May 20, 2013 · Modified: Mar 4, 2021 by Kiersten · This post may contain affiliate links.
When I was in high school, we had to line dance in gym class. I'm pretty sure that the decision to include line dancing in the physical education curriculum was a cruel joke on the part of school administrators. Let's put a bunch of suburban teenagers in a room and make them dance to Garth Brooks! Ha ha, that'll show 'em! I hated line dancing. Hated it. There is really nothing sadder than an uncoordinated sullen goth girl doing the Boot Scootin' Boogie. Not even a velvet painting of a crying clown is sadder than that.
So one day during all this line dancing humiliation, the gym teacher turned around to change the CD and my friend turned to me and said, "Let's leave." And I think that was the moment in my life when I realized that I had free will. Yes! I could leave! I could just leave right now! Who's stopping me? So we left. It was exhilarating. And we decided not to go to gym class again until the line dancing unit was over. Because we could do that!
Then I decided I was free to not go to other classes either. When I got detentions for not going to class, I was free not to serve them. (Eventually, I accumulated so many detentions that the school just wrote them off.) It felt amazing to finally realize that no one could tell me what to do and that I was master of my own destiny, conductor of my own train, ringleader of my own crying clown circus.
Even though I am no longer a sullen goth girl (I am still uncoordinated, though), this has kind of been my guiding philosophy in life ever since then. Although I feel the pull of obligations and expectations, ultimately, I know I'm in charge of myself and for better or worse, I do things the way I want to do them. I'd rather fail doing things my way than succeed doing things someone else's way. I'm kind of stubborn like that. I'm a big believer in choices and I want the world to be like Burger King and let me have it my way, so when I post recipes on my blog, I tend to list a lot of options and substitutions. Because I want you to have it your way too!
Take these Black Bean & Veggie Baked Tostadas, for example. The starting point of this recipe is a crispy tortilla topped with seasoned zucchini, corn, and black beans. But after that, you're the master of your tostada destiny. Chris had sliced avocado, cherry tomatoes, green onions and cilantro on his and since I'm much pickier than he is, mine were finished with a squeeze of lime juice and a scattering of cilantro and green onions. You can do whatever you want! This is one of those recipes that you really can't go wrong with.
- 4 boneless and skinless chicken breast halves
- 8 corn tortillas (6 inches each)
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for brushing
- 1 teaspoon coarse salt, plus more for seasoning
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus more for seasoning
- 2 red onions, sliced into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
- Chopped lettuce, sliced tomatoes and avocados, fresh cilantro, and sour cream, for serving
Preheat oven to 375 degrees, with rack in center. Between two sheets of waxed paper, pound chicken breasts with a meat pounder until about 1/2 inch thick. Transfer chicken to a resealable plastic bag. Add lime juice, oil, salt, and pepper refrigerate.
Place tortillas on a baking sheet. Brush tops with oil, and season with salt and pepper. Bake until crisp and golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from oven set aside to cool.
Heat a grill or grill pan over medium-high heat. Remove the chicken from refrigerator discard marinade. Grill chicken until browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. Let rest until cool enough to handle, about 5 minutes cut into strips.
Brush onions with oil grill until browned, about 3 minutes per side. Serve the tortillas topped with lettuce, tomatoes, avocados, chicken, onions, cilantro, and sour cream.
This recipe calls for using low carb flour tortillas. You can use any flour tortillas. If you like regular flour tortillas, then use regular flour tortillas.
To serve, top them with a little sour cream, cilantro and fresh tomato.
1. Turn on the oven to broil. Spray both sides of the corn tortillas with cooking spray. Place tortillas on a baking sheet. Broil for 5-7 minutes. Turn them over once. Keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t burn. Remove from oven and let cool.
2. Prepare your toppings. Heat up the refried beans in a microwave safe bowl. Stir.
3. Take a corn tortilla and spread refried beans over the top. Add whatever toppings you like.
Note – you can add meat if you want extra protein. My husband sometimes adds grilled chicken to his tostada. Also, feel free to add other toppings like olives, jalepenos, diced green chiles, corn, etc. You can get creative with this recipe!
Maria is a regular contributor to Make and Takes Food. Maria and her husband, Josh, are Two Peas and Their Pod. They are known as the “cooking couple” and are a great team in the kitchen. They love trying new recipes, flavors, and techniques and sharing their creations with the world. They try to keep things healthy, but they always save room for dessert.
What are fajita veggies?
The best fajita veggies are easy to make with any mixture of hearty veggies, some oil, and spices. Marinate the veggies, cook them quickly, and then stuff them inside a soft tortilla shell with cheese, avocado, and more.
This is seriously so easy, if you can use a knife and measure spices, you&rsquore in!
- Green bell pepper
- Red bell pepper
How to cut fajita veggies
Try to cut all your vegetables to roughly the same size so they&rsquoll cook in the same amount of time. Here&rsquos how I cut my vegetables for fajitas:
- Onions &ndash Remove both ends as well as the outer layer, then cut in half vertically. Lay each half flat side down, and cut slices going the long way, not as a cross section.
- Peppers &ndash Remove the top, bottom, seeds, and ribs. Cut in half if you didn&rsquot already, and cut vertical slices similar in size to the onions.
- Mushrooms &ndash Cut vertical slices, I usually get about four slices per mini portobello.
- Broccoli &ndash Cut the head into quarters, then cut off the big stem. Cut into bite size florets.
Zucchini and Corn Tostadas
Fancy a tostada, try these Zucchini and Corn Tostadas.
Grill some sweetcorn and zucchini on the barbecue and add to tostadas for a tasty summer treat.
Cotija cheese, lime juice, cilantro and avocado ensures that this recipe is full of flavor.
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