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Easy Black Bean Tostadas Recipe

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There is a lot to love about these black bean tostadas. Not only is it an incredibly satisfying meal, but it’s easy to make, and, it’s my favorite type of meal for families – DIY and totally customizable. Put out all of the ingredients and let everyone make their own black bean tostada, according to their own preferences. (Just like my chili-spiced chicken tostadas and ground turkey tostadas!) The homemade refried black beans totally make this bean tostada and they only take 15 minutes, so make it happen! 😉

If you love refried black beans as much as we do, be sure to try my black bean crispy tacos, black bean quesadillas, black bean quesarito, and bean and cheese burrito next time.

Black bean tostada with toppings.

Estimated reading time: 9 minutes

What You’ll Love About Black Bean Tostadas

  • Savory black beans and cool fresh toppings
  • Just 10 minutes prep time
  • Just 15 minutes cook time
  • Uses smart shortcuts
  • Made with simple ingredients
  • Customizable meal – let everyone make their own
  • Vegetarian, but super satisfying


  • Pickled red onions – I love these as
  • Mexican crema – Use Mexican crema if you can find it easily, as it is thinner than sour cream, which is ideal here. If not, sour cream will absolutely work, you’ll just need to water it down a bit to get it to a drizzly consistency. You could also use Taco Bell quesadilla sauce instead of making lime crema.
  • Lime – Use a fresh lime as we are using both the zest and fresh lime juice for maximum flavor.
  • Oil – You can use any vegetable oil here. Avocado oil, canola oil, or olive oil will all work.
  • White onion – I prefer white or yellow onion for the refried black beans, but you could also use red onion, especially if you have some from the pickled red onions.
  • Garlic – Use fresh garlic for best flavor or frozen garlic cubes for an easy shortcut.
  • Refried black beans – Use canned black beans as a nice shortcut. You can also use cooked black beans, just be sure to save the cooking liquid, as you’ll need both.
  • Toppings – Anything goes here, you can go as basic or as complex as you want to! I have a whole list of ideas below.
Ingredients to make black bean tostada recipe.

How to Make Black Bean Tostadas

This is an overview on how to make vegetarian tostadas, the detailed instructions can be found below in the recipe card.

Make pickled onions. Add thinly sliced onions into a jar and sprinkle with sugar. Top with vinegar and hot water. Let sit for at least 30 minutes.
Jar with pickled red onions in it.
Prep toppings. Mix lime crema, cut lettuce, put out any toppings on a platter.
Make refried black beans. Heat oil in a large stainless steel skillet over medium heat and saute onions and garlic. Add beans and some of the bean liquid and simmer until thickened. Mash to desired consistency and season with salt to taste.
Refried black beans in a large skillet.
Assemble bean tostadas. Bring the tostada shells and toppings to the table and let everyone make their own perfect tostada. Layer bean mixture over shells, drizzle with lime crema, and sprinkle with shredded lettuce, and pickled onions.
Ingredients to make bean tostada recipe.

More Tostada Toppings Ideas

If you want to put out MORE toppings, here are some good ones to try:

  • Sharp cheddar cheese
  • Queso fresco
  • Pepper jack cheese
  • Corn Salsa (Chipotle Copycat)
  • Thinly sliced lettuce
  • Sliced radish
  • Sliced grape tomatoes
  • Chopped red onion
  • Chopped fresh cilantro
  • Pickled jalapeño peppers
  • Creamy Quesadilla Sauce
  • Pico de gallo
  • Salsa
  • Hot sauce
  • Sour cream
  • Diced avocado
  • Guacamole
  • Lime juice


Are tostadas healthy?

Let me tell you what I see in this vegetarian tostada recipe. The layer of refried black beans is a great source of protein and fiber (not to mention delicious) and then topped with some veggies for fresh produce crunch and flavor. They provide protein, fiber, carbs (energy), produce, and flavor! Everything I look for in a nutritious and delicious meal.

How many calories are in a black bean tostada?

The calories will vary greatly depending on what toppings you use. You can see my full estimated calculation below the recipe card, but each bean tostada (with toppings) has about 200 calories.

Why are tostadas so hard to eat?

When I was doing research for this post and saw that this was a common question I laughed because they ARE hard to eat and they are messy and they inevitably always crumble. Especially if you layer on lots of toppings like I like to do. 🙂

I think a “sticky” refried bean base helps to keep some of the other toppings, but just have plenty of napkins ready.

Storage Instructions

Store tostada components in fridge for 2-3 days.

How to reheat

Reheat beans in the microwave or a hot skillet until warmed through.

Can you freeze refried black beans?

Yes! Refried beans will freeze well. Store in an airtight container (souper cubes are perfect) in the freezer for 2-3 months. Let thaw or defrost before reheating.

Three bean tostadas with different toppings.

What to Serve with Smashed Black Bean Tostadas

All this black bean tostadas recipe needs is a variety of toppings or a few sides:

How to Feed Tostadas to the Whole Family

I get it, feeding kids can be tough! But following the Division of Responsibility and knowing your job and your child’s job makes it SO much more enjoyable. You’ll be able to feed your kids any meal, which will help ensure that they are eating a variety of nutritious foods – with plenty of play food sprinkled in.

I would recommend serving the beans in a pinch bowl (taster bowl) if it’s a new or learning-to-like it food and let everyone build their own tostadas. Serve the meal with a few items you know your kids will eat, like fruit, milk, and/or bread and butter if they don’t do tostada shells.

Want More?

Follow Emily on Instagram or TikTok for family dinner recipe videos and tips for feeding kids.

Black bean tostada on corn tortilla on marble.

More Easy Tostada Recipes

If you like this black bean tostada recipe, you might also like some of these other easy tostada recipes:

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Black bean tostada on corn tortilla on marble.

Easy Black Bean Tostadas Recipe

  • Author: Emily Dingmann of myeverydaytable.com
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 15 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings (3 tostadas) 1x
  • Category: Dinner
  • Method: Skillet
  • Cuisine: Mexican
  • Diet: Vegetarian
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These easy + delicious black bean tostadas consist of crunchy shells, homemade refried black beans, and cool and fresh toppings. A family fave! 


Units Scale

For Tostadas:

  • 1/2 medium red onion
  • 2 Tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 cup vinegar (white, apple cider, red wine)
  • 1/2 cup hot water
  • shredded lettuce
  • diced tomatoes
  • crispy corn tostada shells
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1 lime

For Refried Black Beans:

  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 white onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 315 oz. cans black beans (drained, but reserve liquid)
  • 1 1/2 cups liquid from canned beans
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt


  1. Make pickled onions. Thinly slice 1/2 red onion and place into a jar. Sprinkle with sugar and cover with vinegar and hot water. Let sit for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Mix lime crema. In a small bowl, whisk together sour cream, lime zest, and lime juice. Thin sauce with milk or water if necessary so that it can be drizzled.
  3. Heat olive oil in large stainless steel skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions to pan and cook for 3-4 minutes, until soft. Add garlic to pan and cook for 30 seconds, or until fragrant.
  4. Add beans to pan and stir together with onions. Add bean liquid to pan and bring to a simmer. Turn heat to low and cook at a low simmer for about 9-14 minutes until most of liquid has evaporated. Mash beans to desired consistency and season with sea salt to taste. 
  5. Assemble tostadas. Put out toppings and let everyone build their own tostadas.


  • Makes about 3 cups of refried black beans

Keywords: black bean tostadas, black bean tostada, bean tostada

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  1. Tut

    Fixed the black bean tostadas last night and made a big mistake! Since there’s only two of us, I used 2 rather than the 3 cans of black beans in the recipe….they were so good we ate tostatdas again today and now all the beans are gone. Wish there were more, won’t make that mistake again.