Tostada (tortilla)

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This article is about the Mexican fried tortilla and dish. For the toast, see Tostada (toast). For the fried fruit, see Plantain.
Flickr dongkwan 540812245--Shrimp Tostada.jpg
Shrimp tostadas (Mexican sense)
Type Appetizer or snack
Place of origin
Main ingredients
Cookbook:Tostada  Tostada

Tostada (/tɒˈstɑːdə/ or /tˈstɑːdə/; Spanish: [tosˈtaða]) is a Spanish word meaning "toasted". In Mexico and other parts of Hispanic America it is the name of different local dishes which are toasted or use a toasted ingredient as the main base of their preparation. Even though the tortilla is fried; the meaning sticks with it.

In Mexican usage, tostada usually refers to a flat or bowl-shaped (like a bread bowl) tortilla that is deep fried. It may also refer to any dish using a tostada as a base.[1] It can be consumed alone, or used a base for other foods. Corn tortillas are usually used for tostadas, although tostadas made of wheat flour may occasionally be found.


An Oaxacan tlayuda

The tostada avoids waste when tortillas are not fresh enough to be made into tacos, but fresh enough to be eaten. The tortilla can be eaten fried or raw, even in dough form. The tortilla is fried in boiling oil until it becomes golden, rigid and, crunchy, rather like a slice of toasted bread. It is served as a companion to various Mexican food, mostly seafood and stews, such as menudo, birria, and pozole. The latter is usually accompanied with tostadas dipped in sour cream.

Tostadas are a dish on their own in Mexico and the American Southwest. Beans, cheese, sour cream, chopped lettuce, sliced onions, and salsa may be spread on a tostada, which is then topped with diced and fried meat, usually chicken or pork. The "Tostada de Pata" (made with chopped pork fingers in conserve) is considered a classic and is found wherever tostadas are eaten. Due to the fragile nature of a tostada, the topping must be pasty enough to stay on. This keeps the other toppings or garnishes from falling off while being eaten. Mostly the same toppings are used as with tacos. These toppings are called "guisados".

They are also popular with seafood such as tuna, shrimp, crab, chopped octopus, and ceviche. Vegetarian tostadas are occasionally found.

They can also be an appetizer, cut into small triangles to dip into salsa, guacamole, or beans. This version of the tostada has its origins in New Mexican and Tex-Mex cuisine. Tortilla chips, commercially known as nachos, are served with salsa or chile con queso.

Tostadas can be found anywhere in Mexico, but Oaxaca has the largest, the Tlayuda. It is the size of a pizza and is sometimes topped with chapulines (fried grasshoppers).

In Central America, tostadas are often prepared with black beans, parsley, ground beef and curtido.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Rick Bayless, JeanMarie Brownson & Deann Groen Bayless (2000). Mexico One Plate At A Time. Scribner. pp. 62–70. ISBN 0-684-84186-X.