I’ve always loved adding lentils to soups, and warm salads, especially this one I made not too long ago, with roasted vegetables. Recently, I’ve been experimenting more with lentils as a meat replacement. Legumes in general are a great meat replacement because they’re a good source of protein, but I realized because lentils break down when they’re cooked, they’re actually a good substitute for ground meat – similar look and texture, but with all of healthier meatless benefits.
This recipe for Chipotle Lentil Tostadas was inspired by Nicole at Prevention RD, who made lentil and corn tacos. Definitely use corn tortillas which crisp up so nicely in the oven or on the grill, and pile them high with this cooked lentil mixture that’s full of protein. Top them with lettuce, tomato, avocado, cheese if you like – whatever your tostada eating heart desires!
Red, yellow or orange lentils will break down when cooked. Green or brown ones will hold their shape better. You pick!
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 1 medium onion diced
- 1 medium poblano pepper seeded and diced
- 1 large garlic clove minced
- 3 teaspoons chili powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon chipotle chili powder or less for less heat
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 cup lentils
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- juice of 1 lime
- kosher salt
- 1/4 cup cilantro chopped
- 12 corn tortillas
- Cooking oil
- garnishes: lettuce tomato, avocado, cheese (optional)
- Heat oil on high heat in a sauté pan or dutch oven. Add onion and poblano pepper and sauté for 4-5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté for another 1 minute. Add spices and stir just long enough to toast.
- Add lentils and broth to the vegetables. Bring broth to a boil, stir well and reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 20-30 minutes, or until lentils are tender.
- Add lime juice, cilantro and salt to taste.
- Preheat oven broiler.
- Lay corn tortillas in a single layer on a baking sheet, and spray each side with cooking spray and sprinkle lightly with kosher salt.
- Toast tortillas under the broiler until puffed and lightly golden. Flip and repeat with the other side. Watch them carefully - they go from golden to burned quickly!
- To serve, top each tortilla with about 2-3 tablespoons of the lentils, and add lettuce, tomatoes, avocado, and cheese as desired.
How do you eat lentils?