International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Tostadas de Pollo

A plate of chicken tostadas

(Mexican fried tortillas with chicken)

Image by VirtualEm

Average: 3.8 (6 votes)

Tostadas are snack food in Mexico, made in street stalls throughout the country. The tostada shell itself is made by frying corn tortillas until they are crisp. The shells then serve as a platform for all sorts of toppings, from cheese and beans to shredded chicken to ceviche.

Tostadas are a great way to use up leftovers from a Mexican meal.

4 to 6 servings


  • Corn tortillas -- 12
  • Oil -- for deep frying
  • Chicken breast or thigh meat, skinless and boneless -- 1 to 1 1/2 pounds
  • Onion, roughly chopped -- 1
  • Chili powder -- 1 tablespoon
  • Ground cumin -- 2 teaspoons
  • Salt -- 2 teaspoons
  • Refried beans, warm -- 2 cups
  • Queso fresco cheese, crumbled -- 1 cup
  • Romaine or iceberg lettuce, shredded -- 1 head
  • Onion, thinly sliced -- 1
  • Sour cream -- 1/2 cup
  • Salsa Mexicana -- 1 recipe


  1. Heat about 1 inch of oil in a heavy skillet until it begins to shimmer, or about 365°F on a deep-fry thermometer. Working one at a time, add a tortilla to the hot oil and fry for about 1 or 2 minutes on one side. Then flip and fry for another minute on the second side. Remove to a platter lined with paper towels and repeat with the remaining tortillas.
  2. Place chicken breast, onion, spices and salt in a saucepan and add water to cover. Bring to a boil, reduce to low and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes.
  3. Remove the chicken from its poaching liquid, set aside to cool and then shred with your hands. Moisten the shredded chicken with a little of the broth and save the rest of the broth for soup or other dish.
  4. Lay the cheese, lettuce, onion, sour cream and salsa out in separate bowls and allow guests to form their own tostadas: beans on the bottom, then chicken, cheese next, then the rest. Or if you like, preassemble the tostadas and bring them to the table on a platter.

Tostada Variations

  • Other Tostada Toppings: Shredded beef or pork, chicken tinga, grilled fish or shrimp, ceviche, sliced avocado; or guacamole.
  • If you can't find queso fresco, try using shredded Monterey jack or crumbled feta.
  • Tostadas can be bought pre-fried in most markets these days.



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