This speedy (15-minute!) vegan Refried Bean Tostada recipe is so delicious and satisfying. It's quick and easy to assemble, then everyone can personalize them with their favorite toppings! (Vegan, gluten-free.)
Have 15 minutes? Let's make some quick + easy refried bean tostadas!
We'll take a crunchy shell and spread it with creamy refried beans. Then top it with crisp, fresh veggies of your choice.
It's a great family-friendly meal because everyone can personalize them with their own favorite toppings.
Plus they're a good source of satisfying plant-based protein and fiber.
Ingredients for Bean Tostadas
For this recipe you will need:
- Corn tortillas: These will be used to make our own homemade tostada shells in the oven. I try to find organic corn tortillas when possible, with simple ingredients like corn + lime juice only.
- Olive oil: We'll use this to lightly brush the corn tortillas before baking in the oven. (If you're using pre-made shells, then simply skip this ingredient.)
- Refried beans: These are made from pinto beans. Be sure to find a can of vegan refried beans, because most traditional ones are made with lard. Both Amy's and Cadia brands are a couple that offer vegan styles, but there are many others available now as well.
- Taco seasoning: I use my own homemade Taco Seasoning blend. But feel free to use your own favorite.
- Grape tomatoes: Or cherry tomatoes, roma tomatoes, or other garden tomatoes will work.
- Romaine lettuce: Or iceberg lettuce, thinly sliced cabbage, etc.
- Red onion: Or substitute white onion, yellow onion, or green onion.
Making Tostada Shells
In this recipe, I share my quick and easy method of making tostada shells at home.
Prepare: Simply use fresh corn tortillas and brush each side with olive oil. Then place on a baking sheet to crisp under the broiler for a few minutes on each side.
Watch them carefully: Ovens can vary. So just be sure to watch them carefully so they don't burn. I have my rack about 10 inches under the broiler, so adjust the time if yours is closer.
Crispy: The texture should be thin and crispy. If they are still chewy + tough, then you'll need to cook them longer.
Tip: Instead of making your own homemade tortilla shells, you can simply purchase pre-made hard corn tostada shells if desired.
More beans: Stir in a can of black beans (rinsed and drained) to the refried bean mixture while it's heating on the stovetop.
Make it spicy: Add a sprinkle of cayenne pepper, ground chipotle powder, jalapeno, or simply top with hot sauce to taste.
Make it "meaty": Stir in your favorite vegan ground beef crumbles to the bean mixture. Cook these separately according to package instructions, and then stir them in.
Other flavors + seasoning: I use my homemade taco seasoning blend for convenience, but change it up with your own favorite spices. Ground cumin, chili powder, dried oregano, smoked paprika, and others would be tasty. You can also sauté an onion and garlic cloves in the saucepan before adding your refried beans.
Personalize these vegan tostadas with your own favorite toppings. A few ideas include:
- Avocado or guacamole
- Vegan shredded cheese (or dairy-free cheddar cheese sauce)
- Chipotle Crema (for smoky spice!)
- Vegan sour cream
- Restaurant-Style Blender Salsa (or Pico de Gallo)
- Black olives
- Fresh cilantro
- Fresh vinegar-based slaw
Vegan Bean Tostadas
- 5 corn tortillas (or pre-made tostada shells)
- 1 Tbsp. olive oil (for brushing)
- 15 oz. can refried beans (vegan)
- 2-3 tsp. taco seasoning
- 2/3 cup grape tomatoes
- 2 cups romaine lettuce
- 1/4 cup red onion (or white or yellow)
Other toppings of choice:
- Vegan cheese shreds, salsa, avocado/guacamole, olives, fresh cilantro, hot sauce, etc.
- Make tostada shells: Turn your oven on broil. Lightly brush both sides of tortillas with olive oil. Then place tortillas in a single file on a baking sheet. Broil for 3-4 minutes. Flip, then broil for 3-4 minutes longer until edges are slightly golden.*
- Warm the beans: Meanwhile, in a small pan over medium-low heat, add refried beans and taco seasoning. Stir and heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until warm.
- Prepare your toppings: Chop tomatoes, lettuce, and finely dice red onion. (Or other toppings of choice.)
- Build your tostadas: Take a crisp tortilla and spread a thin layer of beans on top. Then add desired toppings.
Nutrition Per Serving (Estimate)
Sodium: This is omitted as I cannot provide an accurate number. I encourage you to calculate your own to provide a much more precise reading based on the exact ingredients, brands, and amounts you're using.
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