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Black Bean and Plantain Tostadas
with avocado crema / spinach salad

Active: 35 minTotal: 35 min

If you're looking to add some variety to the taco routine, tostadas are a great way to mix things up. With the tortillas baked flat until they are nice and crisp and ingredients piled on top, these are messy and fun to eat. This filling vegetarian version is topped with lightly sweet plantains and savory black beans.


Black Bean and Plantain Tostadas:
  • Shallots - 2, diced
  • Plantains, large - 2, peeled and chopped (ripe plantains resemble bananas but should be very dark brown on the outside)
  • Cilantro leaves - 2 Tbsp, chopped
  • Beans, black (14 oz / 397 g) - 1 can, drained and rinsed
  • Oil, cooking - 1 Tbsp + 1 Tbsp
  • Cumin - 1 tsp
  • Chili powder - 1 tsp
  • Tortillas, taco-sized corn or flour - 8
  • Avocado crema (ingredients listed separately) - 1/4 cup
  • Pepitas / pumpkin seeds - 1/4 cup
Avocado Crema:
  • Cilantro leaves - 2 Tbsp, chopped
  • Avocados - 1
  • Sour cream - 1/4 cup (sub plain or Greek yogurt)
  • Lime juice - 1 1/2 Tbsp
Spinach Salad:
  • Spinach, baby - 4 oz
  • Avocado crema (ingredients listed separately) - 1/2 cup

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 serving
Servings Per Recipe 4
Amount Per Serving
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% Daily Value
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  1. Shallots - Dice shallots. (Can be done up to 5 days ahead)
  2. Make avocado crema - Chop cilantro leaves (portion for crema) and peel avocados (discard pits). Combine cilantro, avocados, sour cream, and lime juice. Blend using an immersion blender or standing blender until smooth. Season with some salt. (Can be done 1 day ahead)
  3. Plantains / Cilantro (portion for tostadas) - Prep as directed and store separately.
  4. Beans - Drain and rinse beans.


  1. Preheat oven to 500F / 260C.
  2. While oven is heating, heat a nonstick pan with first part of cooking oil over medium heat. Add shallots and saute until nearly soft, 1 to 2 minutes.
  3. Add plantains and cook for 3 minutes more.
  4. Stir in beans, cumin, and chili powder.
  5. Lightly mash plantain / bean mixture with the back of a fork or spatula (it doesn’t need to be completely mashed, but this will help the filling to hold together on the tostadas).
  6. Season with some salt and pepper and set aside.
  7. Make tostada shells by brushing both sides of tortillas with second part of cooking oil and spread them out in a single layer on a sheet pan (use two pans if needed). Bake tortillas for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until crisp.
  8. While tostadas bake, toss spinach with avocado crema (portion for salad).
  9. Assemble tostadas by topping tortillas with plantain / bean mixture. Drizzle with avocado crema (portion for tostadas) and top with pepitas and cilantro. Enjoy tostadas with salad on the side.

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This meal has 20 reviews

This was okay, but I didn't love it and wouldn't make it again. I think the flavours were just not for me.

By: Andrea
Posted: Jun 07, 2019
Diet: Original

Excellent. Also had thick crema, but I like it that way.. only thing is tostadas can be bit dry, but the flavor is great

By: Nienke
Posted: Dec 20, 2018
Diet: Original

Surprisingly delicious and filling!

By: Jenna
Posted: Oct 16, 2018
Diet: Original

Just got around to making these because my plantains wouldn't ripen! I kind of hate the messiness of the tostones, so I ended up making it quesadilla-style with just a little cheese to hold it in the tortilla. Pretty good!

By: Nicholas
Posted: Jun 26, 2018
Diet: Original

It was good -- unfortunately, our plantains weren't perfectly ripe, and I think it would have been more flavorful if they had been.

By: Chris
Posted: Jun 16, 2018
Diet: Vegetarian

This was actually pretty good. I didn't think my husband would like it because of the sweetness to it, but he did! My biggest complaint is that it is NOT friendly for taking as a lunch the next day. Too many separate components, and even then I didn't even attempt to make the crunchy tortilla shells - I just assumed they'd be tacos for lunch.

By: Jennifer
Posted: Jun 15, 2018
Diet: Gluten-free