This post has been sponsored by Dempster’s.
Sometimes the inspiration for a dish comes from a very simple ingredient. In this case, I was inspired to make Crispy Beef Tostada Bites when I looked at a tray of corn tortilla chips. The homemade chips were nothing special, but once I started playing around with toppings I ended up creating a yummy bite-sized appetizer.
So here’s what happened…
I was wandering the grocery store the other day and noticed a bag of Dempster’s Corn Tortillas. I usually buy the original version, which I used in my Steak Burritos with Chilli Lime Sauce recipe, but I’ve never noticed these before. I love corn chips though, so I decided to buy a package to play around with.
On the back of the bag there’s a recipe for Homebaked Tortillas Crisps. The recipe is really simple, so I thought I would make a batch and eat them with homemade guacamole. Yum!
I wanted to try making round chips, so I grabbed a pastry cutter and cut out 24 2.5″ rounds from the tortillas. Don’t they look pretty?
The recipe on the bag says to place the pieces of tortilla in a single layer on a baking sheet. I decided to put down a piece of parchment paper first, just to help make clean up a bit easier. Next, the instructions said to brush the tortilla with olive oil, salt and black pepper before baking, so I did that.
I then baked two trays of tortilla rounds in a hot oven until they were golden and crispy. Of course, I didn’t throw out all the extra bits of tortillas that were left over. I baked those off separately so I can use them as a topping for salads or soups.
Even though the crisps weren’t that greasy, I decided to lay them on some paper towel to absorb any excess oil.
Now, I could have stopped here and I would have had a nice quick snack. But when I looked at those crispy little tortilla rounds, I thought they would make really cute mini tostadas!
I spent the next hour or so playing around with different combinations of flavours and texture, and I was really happy with what I came up with.
The tostadas in this recipe combine crispy pan-fried ground beef with taco seasonings, along with creamy refried beans, rich avocado and spicy salsa. Sour cream, whole black beans and grated Tex-Mex cheese are also great additions.
If you’re serving these at a party (maybe a Grey Cup party?), I would let your guests build their own tostada bites. This way the crisps will retain their crunchy texture right up until they are eaten. If you must make these in advance, be sure not to add the salsa or lime juice, or else you will end up with a soggy mess!
Crispy Beef Tostada Bites
For the Tortilla Crisps
- 1 204 g package Dempster’s Corn Tortillas
- 3 tbsp olive oil
For the Beef
- 1 lb lean ground beef
- 2.5 tsp taco seasoning
- salt and pepper
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 tsp lime juice
- Refried Beans paste
- Tex-Mex Shredded Cheese
- Black Beans
- Avocado Slices
- Fresh lime juice
To Cook Tortillas:
- Preheat oven to 375°F
- Line a 2 baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
- Cut tortillas into 2.5″ circles with a pastry cutter
- Whisk together olive oil, salt and pepper. Brush the oil mixture on both sides of the circles.
- Place tortilla circles in a single layer on the baking sheets.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes, flipping over halfway through cooking. Remove from oven when golden brown.
- Place on a plate lined with paper towels to drain.
To Cook Beef:
- Place a large frying pan over medium heat.
- While the pan is heating up, mix the seasonings into the beef.
- When the pan is hot, add the oil.
- Add the seasoned beef to the oil and cook until well browned.
- Add the lime juice, stir, then remove from heat.
- Drain on a plate lined with paper towels to remove excess fat.
To Assemble the Bites:
- If using refried bean paste, spread some on each crisp. This will help the other ingredients stick to the crisp.
- Top with any or all of the optional toppings, adding a squeeze of lime juice on top if desired.
- Eat immediately, or else the crisps will lose their texture.
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This post has been sponsored by Dempster’s. All opinions are my own.