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I really just want you to have this. I could make you wait another day until I can successfully start AND finish this post with a tale or a thought that might actually make sense OR I could let you have it now. And I really just think you need this as soon as possible.

You should know that I gave it a valiant effort. After tonight’s attempts I now have a Google Doc entitled, “Failed Blog Entries”. Because you never know – one days failure might be another’s success.

This is just the sort of meal that belongs in January – heavy on vegetables, balancing December’s cookies and February’s chocolate, with vibrant flavors and comforting heat.  You know what I realized today? January is nearly half-way through, so what I’m saying is we really don’t have another day to spare. Who knows, the way the first half of this month has gone, you may be waiting a very long time.

So without further ado or with any ado for that matter have some kale.

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Jalapeno and Lime Marinated Kale Tostada

Serves 2 very hungry people or 4 less hungry

With the aid of our juicer and this recipe we’ve been going through kale faster than we can remove those hearty stems. After a lazy soak in lime juice and spice the kale surrenders a bit of its heft while retaining a freshness that is so often lacking in food this time of year.

If you don’t care about skimping on some calories and mess you can fry the tortillas in a shallow pan and a bit of oil around 360*F until golden brown.


4 flour tortillas

2 teaspoons olive oil

Brush 4 tortillas with butter or olive oil, sprinkle with salt then bake at 400* for 10 – 12 minutes or until completely crisp.

Kale Marinade

¼ cup fresh lime juice

2 T olive oil

½ jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped

¼ cup cilantro

¼ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon ground cumin

4 cups kale, washed, thick ribs removed and roughly chopped

Mix first 6 ingredients in a large bowl. Add the chopped kale and toss to coat. Let sit for 30 minutes.

Black Beans

2 teaspoons olive oil

2 garlic cloves

1 T shallot, finely chopped

pinch salt

1 can black beans, rinsed and drained

In a small sauce pan saute garlic and shallots in oil over medium heat until just fragrant. Add beans and simmer about 5-7 minutes, until soft and warmed through. Taste and add salt if needed, keeping in mind the kale and Cotija add a brightness and salt as well.


1 avocado, roughly cut

1/4 cup crumbled Cotija (available at Mexican markets or many fine grocery stores. If you can’t find it you may substitute Feta or Chevre)

Place baked tortilla on plate, top with warm beans, marinated kale, chunks of avocado and about 1 Tablespoon crumbled Cotija cheese.

74 Responses to “Jalapeno and lime marinated kale tostada”

  1. Dana

    Yes, thank you. I almost hate to admit this but I am very so-so on kale. If it’s stewed to death in something, I tolerate it. I want to like it. I know it’s good for me. This looks stunningly amazing and I think I will have to give it a try.

  2. Brittany

    Never in a million years would I have thought to put kale on a tostada, and we eat a LOT of tostadas in this house. That mountain of kale looks so enticing; I can’t wait to try this!

  3. Kelley Green

    Love it! This is a beautiful recipe (anything with jalapenos, honestly) and I *am* under mountains of kale this time of year. I think I’m going to try it with homemade gorditas as I’ve got some masa from my last trip back to Texas. Thanks Ashley :)k

  4. Meister @ The Nervous Cook

    Look at all that glorious green! This has got everything my husband and I love: Corn tortillas, avocado, kale, creamy black beans, salty cheese. Definitely just got added to my To Do list for Sunday brunch.

  5. Nicole Franzen

    yum! this is totally how we eat 🙂 I usually make breakfast with corn tortillas, black beans, scrambled eggs, greens and a big hunk of avo. Hot sauce, cheese and chilies. I will try marinating the kale!

    • Ashley Rodriguez

      @Nicole – I saw your breakfast this morning on Instagram. Don’t be surprised if you hear a knocking on your door. I’ll bring the coffee.

  6. Angharad

    This looks absolutely stellar, 100% my kind of dish. Putting on the to-make list immediately. Happy January and happy Friday!

  7. Julianne

    I cannot wait to try this. I have been looking for new ways to incorporate kale into my diet. I eat the Raw Kale & Avocado salad from Whole Foods like it’s candy, but this looks 10 times better.

  8. Sarah

    I can’t get enough kale these days and will 100% be trying this recipe out very soon. I love ways to get it in as the main ingredient in my entrees. Beautiful!

  9. Kasey

    I start so many blog entries that are left ‘hanging’ in my Evernote account! This looks soo delicious. I’m kind of a sucker for anything lime + jalapeno. Happy Friday lovely lady! xoxo

  10. Deanna

    I was just at Whole Foods and didn’t buy kale. Guess who’s going back later today so she can have this for lunch?

  11. tracy

    Thank you for pushing this out so we could get our hands on it!

    Don’t be hard on yourself. Give yourself a break occasionally. You deserve it. (that’s what i beat into my head when I’m having a crappy writing day-which is like all the time)

    xoxoxo my friend!

  12. Sarah

    Yum! I posted a recipe just like this over the summer. Mine had cilantro and corn in it. Absolutely delicious.

  13. Wenderly

    Oh, does that ever look splendid. Fresh, vibrant & spicy! Exactly what I need mid January, tale or no tale, delicious just the same.

  14. Rachel

    Coming up with a cohesive story for a post often keeps me from posting! Sometimes it’s just better to get it out there! If you hadn’t, then I wouldn’t have this wonderful recipe to try! This looks soo soo good and incorporates all the things I’m craving right now: citrus, spice, and green!

  15. Piper

    I love kale, and everything else in this recipe. Thank you reminding us that different flavors can be combined into something we love, like a tostada. What a wonderful meatless entree… it would make good enchiladas too, I bet!

  16. Lynn

    Wow! You are actually the girl from that cascade commercial! That is really cool! All of these recipes look wonderful! I am so excited to get to try one!

  17. Brenda

    Now that I have our little boy eating kale, I’ll have to give this a try. Thanks! Looks amazing.

  18. Carly

    Your blog and photos are just gorgeous. Reading your posts inspires me constantly. Thank you.

  19. Dave

    This was totally awesome! Can’t wait to have it again! Thanks for sharing, and for doing all the work to bring such great recipes to life and entice us to make them!

  20. Cookie and Kate

    Good gracious, that is my kind of meal. I have been eating massive kale salads lately and this looks like a great way to mix it up. I completely empathize with your difficulty finding the right words–by the time I develop a recipe, photograph it, edit the photos and type up the recipe, I’m ready to be done with it! Your insightful posts always make me strive to become a better writer.

  21. molly

    oh, be still my greens-loving heart! i finally, finally came around to raw kale (in seattle, of all places, last summer, with a take-out met market salad). but i’ve yet to make it at home. mouth is watering…

  22. melissa

    just made this & ate half of it myself!!!! very full but very satisfied !!!!! I have only had kale twice in my life ( sad, i know) & was looking for ways to try it . this is gonna be made again and again. was also thinking maybe leave out the tortilla and mix it with couscous? don’t get me wrong I eat tortilla in some form almost everyday . but the mix of everything else is so tasty and fresh gotta use other ways too.!!

  23. Melanie

    Hi! I totally saw your commercial on TV about not having spots on the dishes and I had to check out your blog! Very beautiful! I love the photos!! =)

  24. Mairi @ Toast

    You have indeed just made kale sound incredible 🙂 Adding to the to make list when all those greens are featuring here in NZ.

  25. Jessica

    Delicious!! We’re not huge kale fans, but your idea of marinating it first, and cooking the beans is brilliant. This is now a favorite in our house. Thanks for sharing, and love your blog and photos!!

  26. Haley

    Have made this twice and love it! The first time I made it I followed the recipe exactly. The 2nd time I cut the tortillas up to make “chips” instead and I smashed the blackbeans in the pan to make them stick to the chips better. This was a totally amazing dish. Light, bright, delicious! And Healthy!!! I love it and my family thanks you!

  27. Cathy

    Holy moly, this is fabulously delicious! I was hesitant since there’s no cooking for the kale, but it’s going into the regular dinner rotation now. Thank you so much for a great recipe!

  28. Kels

    My boyfriend is a Los Angeleno and very particular about his Mexican. I didn’t think these would go over but they were shockingly good. Awesome recipe! We opted for tortillas warmed on an open flame and built the ingredients like a taco. Thanks for a healthier take on a something that’s always been a classic in our house 🙂

  29. Amber

    I made these for dinner tonight and have already shared the recipe with several friends. I used corn tortillas (which I pan-fried in a little bit of olive oil) and crumbled some queso fresco on top instead of the cotija. These were fantastic; I can’t wait to have the leftovers for lunch tomorrow! Thanks for the recipe, Ashley!

  30. Emily

    I have made this recipe once a month since I stumbled across your beautiful blog… this is now a staple, a go-to, and one of my very favorite recipes to make because it is not only beautiful and delicious, but wonderfully easy. Thank you! …have you experimented with any variations? I’m thinking I’ll make this again for dinner tonight and am considering some additions.