Tostadas de Tinga Mexican Shredded Chicken Tostada Recipe

Traditional Tostadas de Tinga is a classic Mexican dish featuring crunchy corn tostada topped with chile and tomato sautéed shredded chicken.

Our quick & easy healthy Tinga Tostadas recipe is protein packed, featuring lean chicken breasts, refried beans and crumbled queso cheese.

We love serving homemade Tinga Tostada at summer barbecues with fresh guacamole, salsa and thirst quenching tequila cocktails.

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Save our traditional Tostadas de Tinga  recipe to Pinterest!
Save our traditional Tostadas de Tinga  recipe to Pinterest!

What Are Tostadas de Tinga ?

Tostada is the name given to several dishes in Mexico and other parts of Latin America that include a toasted tortilla as the main base of their preparation.

The name usually refers to a flat or bowl-shaped tortilla that is deep-fried or toasted, but may also refer to any dish using a tostada as a base. 

Corn tortillas are usually used for tostadas, although tostadas made of wheat or other ingredients can also be found.

Just like stale bread can be made palatable as toast, a stale tortilla can be repurposed as a tostada by frying it in boiling oil until it becomes golden, rigid, and crunchy. Commercial tostadas are similar in taste and consistency to tortilla chips.

Our Tostadas de Tinga recipe uses store bought corn tostada that are slathered with refried beans, topped with the hot chicken mixture then garnished with finely chopped lettuce, cilantro and crumbled queso cheese.

This easy Tostadas de Tinga recipe is the perfect cutlery free snack to enjoy with a boozy tequila muddled margarita.

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Homemade Mexican Tostadas de Tinga recipe ingredients.
Homemade Mexican Tostadas de Tinga recipe ingredients.

Travel to Mexico by Cooking Tostadas de Tinga  at Home

I love traveling to Latin America.

As a professional food and travel journalist, I’ve had the opportunity to enjoy amazing meals in Central America, South America and the Caribbean, from traditional markets to award winning restaurants.

For over ten years, I’ve been on the hunt for the best Tinga Tostadas recipe. I’ve embarked on culinary adventures at local restaurants in Cuba, Belize, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Curacao, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil.

In Mexico, I’ve crunched through Tostadas de Tinga at restaurants in Puerto Vallarta, Los Cabos, Mexico City, Merida, Chichen Itza and Playa del Carmen.

When on a food tour to taste the Best Tacos in Puerto Vallarta the local guide stopped at the beach resort’s most famous Tinga Tostada shop. Tostadas de Tinga are a beloved street food across Mexico, from sunny beach resorts to the scenic mountain towns near Monetary.

After enjoying your first taste, you’ll realize why Tostadas de Tinga is a must-try when visiting Mexico!

You May Also Enjoy Reading These Mexican Travel Stories…

Tinga Tostadas are made with shredded chicken breasts.
Tinga Tostadas are made with shredded chicken breasts.

Where To Eat Mexican Tostada de Tinga

If you live in a large city in Canada or America you’ll likely have access to a local Mexican restaurant that serves Tostada de Tinga.

Haven’t traveled to Mexico before? It may be helpful to first sample Tinga Tostadas at a local restaurant to better understand how it is served. You can quickly determine how spicy you want to make the chicken mixture, how much refried beans to spread over each tostada and other complimentary Mexican dishes to serve at the table.

In Toronto, the best Mexican restaurants that may serve their own homemade Tostadas de Tinga recipe include El Rey, La Carnita, Playa Cabana, El Catrin, Campechano, El Trompo, Fonda Lola, Hot Mess Tex Mex, Rosalinda, Reposado Bar, Grand Electric and Milagro.

In a skillet cook shredded chicken with onion, garlic, chipotle chile and tomatoes.
In a skillet cook shredded chicken with onion, garlic, chipotle chile and tomatoes.

My Family Loves Tostadas de Tinga

I love cooking Mexican food for my friends and family.

After traveling through Mexico tasting the best regional tacos and tostadas I was keen to recreate my favourite dishes at home.

I first made this Tostadas de Tinga recipe for my family on a hot summer day at the cottage. Chicken breasts, lettuce and feta cheese were on sale at the grocery store so I threw together the dish as a tasty mid afternoon snack.

I first prepared the chile tomato chicken mixture over the stove then assembled the tostadas for lunch. It was so hot that day I served the tostadas on the dock with a bowl of guacamole, spicy queso dip, Mezcal Paloma Slushies and Margaritas.

I knew my parents would love this recipe because they enjoy shredded chicken, spicy Mexican dishes and easy cutlery free meals.

Tostadas de Tinga assembly.
Tostadas de Tinga assembly.

Health Benefits

Our Tostadas de Tinga recipe is packed full of healthy ingredients!

Onions are a humble vegetable packed with vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals. Regular consumption of onions can help boost digestive health and reduce the risk of developing heart disease.

It is only recently that scientists have begun to identify the components responsible for garlic’s myriad health benefits. Rich in phytochemicals and potassium, garlic helps boost your immune system, fight cancer and protect your heart.

Chiles has been proven to help reduce the duration of sickness, prevent heart disease, and promote weight loss. 

Rich in a group of phytochemicals called carotenoids, tomatoes may help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke, and provide protection against cancer. Tomatoes are also a good source of immune-boosting vitamin C.

Chicken is high in protein and provides B vitamins such as niacin, which helps your body access the energy in foods.   

Beans are rich in cancer-fighting vitamin C, energy-boosting B vitamins, and gut-healthy fibre.

A good source of bone-strengthening vitamin K, cilantro is also rich in antioxidants that help protect the eyes from damage by free radicals. 

Corn is rich in vitamin C, an antioxidant that helps protect your cells from damage and wards off diseases like cancer and heart disease. Yellow corn is a good source of the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin, which are good for eye health and help prevent the lens damage that leads to cataracts.

Lettuce is one of the most widely consumed vegetables worldwide, but its nutritional value has been underestimated. Lettuce is low in calories, fat and sodium. It is a good source of fibre, iron, folate, and vitamin C. Lettuce is also a good source of various other health-beneficial bioactive compounds.

Consuming dairy products (such as milk and cheese) provides health benefits — especially improved bone health. Dairy foods provide nutrients that are vital for health and maintenance of your body. These nutrients include calcium, potassium, vitamin D, and protein.

Tostadas de Tinga Photo Image.
Tostadas de Tinga Photo Image.

Homemade Tinga Tostada Recipe Cooking Tips

Tostadas de Tinga is a quick and easy Mexican recipe to make at home. Here are some helpful tips and tricks to get you started.

  • Shredded chicken in traditional Tinga Tostada recipes is typically prepared with breast meat as it’s easy to separate the meat fibres with a fork. You can also use chicken thigh meat if you prefer.
  • We’ve used Spanish cooking onions in this recipe but you can substitute with shallots, white onion or sweet Vidalia onion.
  • We’ve used 1 tbsp of chili powder in this recipe but if you really like spicy food feel free to add more.
  • We’ve used plum tomatoes in this recipe but you can substitue with large beefsteak tomatoes or cherry tomatoes of a similar weight.
  • You want to finely chop the lettuce for the tostada garnish. We like to use head lettuce or the crunchy ribs of Romaine.
  • You can purchase corn tostadas, refried beans, and chile in adobo sauce at a Latin American supermarket, the Mexican aisle of your grocery store or online.
  • We’ve used crumbled feta cheese in this recipe but you can also use Mexican queso.
Garnish Tinga Tostadas with crumbled queso, lettuce and cilantro.
Garnish Tinga Tostadas with crumbled queso, lettuce and cilantro.

What To Serve with Tostadas de Tinga

There’s nothing more satisfying than crunching through a freshly made Tostadas de Tinga on a hot summer day.

We love serving these chicken topped tostadas at lunch or dinner with an assortment of salsas, guacamole and mezcal or tequila cocktails.

If you’re hosting a Mexican-themed dinner party you might want to serve our Prawn Tostada recipe with:

Tinga tostadas are packed full of protein thanks to chicken, queso and refried beans.
Tinga tostadas are packed full of protein thanks to chicken, queso and refried beans.

You May Also Enjoy These Chicken Recipes…

Now you're an expert on how to make authentic Mexican Tostadas de Tinga.
Now you’re an expert on how to make authentic Mexican Tostadas de Tinga.

How To Make Traditional Tostadas de Tinga

Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Tostadas de Tinga

How to make traditional Mexican Tostadas de Tinga. Our easy Mexican recipe features corn tostada, shredded chicken, refried beans and queso.
Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time30 minutes
Total Time1 hour
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Tostada de Tinga
Servings: 4
Calories: 421kcal


  • French knife
  • Skillet
  • measuring cups
  • measuring spoons
  • tongs
  • Mixing bowls


  • 1 Spanish Cooking Onion finely chopped
  • 4 Garlic Cloves minced
  • 4 oz Chipotle Chiles in Adobo Sauce chopped
  • 15 oz Fire Roasted Tomatoes diced
  • 1 tbsp Chili Powder
  • Kosher Salt + Black Pepper to taste
  • 2 Chicken Breasts
  • 8 Tostadas
  • 15 oz Refried Beans
  • 1 cup Romaine Lettuce finely chopped
  • 4 oz Queso Fresco or Feta Cheese crumbled
  • 3/4 cup Cilantro Leaves


  • In a large saucepan add the chopped onion, minced garlic and chopped chipotle in adobo sauce.
  • Add diced tomatoes and chili powder and stir to combine. Bring to a boil over medium high heat.
  • Add 2 chicken breasts to the tomato mixture, reduce heat to medium-low, and bring to a simmer. Cover saucepan with a lid and cook until chicken is cooked through and shreds easily with two forks, 25-30 minutes.
  • When chicken is finished cooking, use tongs to transfer to a plate and let cool slightly. While chicken cools, increase heat to medium-high and simmer sauce, uncovered and stirring occasionally, until it looks like a thick and chunky salsa, about 5 minutes. Set aside.
  • Shred chicken breast meat into small pieces using two forks and transfer to a medium bowl. Pour warm salsa over chicken, and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Tostada Assembly

  • Spread 1/3 cup of refried beans over each tostada. Top with 1/2 cup of chicken tinga. Top with shredded lettuce, sprinkle with crumbled cheese and garnish with chopped cilantro.


Calories: 421kcal | Carbohydrates: 45.4g | Protein: 24.7g | Fat: 16.8g | Saturated Fat: 5.8g | Cholesterol: 68mg | Sodium: 970mg | Potassium: 862mg | Fiber: 10.4g | Sugar: 5.7g | Calcium: 214mg | Iron: 4mg

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