Tostadas with Cranberry Black Beans and Avocado Crema

This has been a recipe very long in the making. I had about 10 failed attempts at the tostada shell, as you may have seen from the photo I posted on Facebook about a month ago. Making a tostada without corn, wheat, or rice is no easy feat!

First, I tried simply frying my grain-free tortillas that I usually use in my enchilada dish. They came out brittle and frying them really brought out the coconut flavor and made them a little chalky. So those went in the trash.

I tried coconut flour vs almond flour, baking soda vs baking powder, full eggs vs egg whites, frying vs baking, cheese in the dough, flax seeds, and a slew of seasonings. Nothing was good enough. They either crumbled into almond sand at the lightest touch, or were hard as a rock.

After almost giving up and deciding that grain-free tostadas just weren't possible, I realized that my perfect tostada shell recipe was actually right under my nose. I ended up taking my Rosemary-Raisin Cracker recipe as my base recipe and tweaked a few things to make it work for Mexican food.

They're strong, they're crunchy, and they perfectly compliment my favorite tostada recipe.

You can fry or bake them, your choice. I like them both ways but they aren't created equal. Frying them gives them a little more strength, but oddly not as much crunch. Baking them is obviously slightly healthier, but they are a tiny bit more brittle and actually have more crunch.

Either way, no forks are required. My kind of tostada!

You really can put anything you'd like on top of these, but I urge you to try this recipe. I know cranberry black beans sound a little odd, but I had them at my favorite restaurant Sideboard and have loved them ever since. They compliment the citrus from the lime in the dish and really add another level of flavor that you don't usually get from black beans.

Shared this week on Whole Foods Wednesday


Tostadas with Cranberry Black Beans and Avocado Crema



Tostada Shells

  • 1 + ¼ cup almond flour
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon virgin olive oil
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon cilantro, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon lime juice

Re-fried Cranberry Black Beans

  • 4 cups water
  • 2 cups soaked and cooked black beans (canned will work too)
  • 1 cup cranberries (frozen or fresh)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons butter or olive oil


  • ¼ cup Avocado Crema
  • ¼ cup tomatillo salsa, or any store bought roasted tomatillo salsa
  • 2 cups shredded green cabbage
  • 1 cup cooked chicken breasts (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds
  • ¼ cup cojita cheese
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro, chopped


Make the Shells

  1. Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and mix until a dough forms.
  2. Divide the dough into four balls then place on a piece of parchment paper. Place another piece of parchment over the balls, then roll each ball out into a circle to ¼ inch thickness. Use a pizza cutter to trim the jagged edges to make them round. If you save your scraps, you can make 5 shells.
  3. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes, flipping once. Cool on a wire rack.
  4. Alternatively, heat ¼ cup of oil over medium-high heat. Working one at a time, fry each shell on both sides until crisp. Drain on a paper towel.

Make the Beans

  1. Combine the black beans, cranberries, and water to a boil. Simmer for 10 minutes, until the cranberries have softened and broken open.
  2. Reserve ½ cup of the cooking liquid, then drain the beans and cranberries. Place them in a food processor or blender, and slowly add the liquid while it is running until the beans and cranberries are smooth.
  3. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium-high heat, then quickly add the pureed beans. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until the majority of the liquid has been absorbed and the beans hold their shape without running. Season with salt.

Layer the Tostadas

  1. Layer each shell in this order: Beans, Salsa, Cabbage, Chicken, Avocado Crema, Pomegranate Seeds, Cojita, and Cilantro. Garnish with a lime wedge.