One day last year our friend came over with a great big take-out tostada salad. From the second she took it out of the bag Kenya and Chloe were all over it like flies on...well, you know what. I was kind of surprised to see a four and two year-old get so excited about a salad but there they were, sitting on our friend's lap devouring her salad. I felt so bad they ate her lunch that I had to make her something else to eat!

It wasn't until I saw some beautiful whole grain tostada shells at the grocery last week that I thought about recreating this dish for them. A year (an eternity in kid time) had gone by since Kenya and Chloe first encountered my friend's tostada salad, so they were understandably hesitant when I placed these strange towers of lettuce, beans, chicken and guacamole in front of them. So I took two extra tostadas, put one on top of each salad and told the kids to smash them down so that the shell would break apart over everything.

From Kenya and Chloe's point of view, how awesome did I just make mealtime? I had just given my kids a get out of jail free card to channel all of their disregulated 5_30pm energy into making a delicious mess. They took one look at each other with sheer glee and disbelief before pressing down with both hands and crushing their tostadas all over their plates. They laughed the entire time and even figured out that they could use the tostada shards like edible utensils to scoop up and eat their salads.

Sometimes making food interactive and fun goes a long way towards encouraging kids to eat something you know they will love -- even if it does make a bit of a mess!

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Tostada Salad (4)

Prep Time: 2 mins Cook Time: 0 mins

nut free

Ingredients

  • 8 tostada shells
  • 1/2 cup guacamole
  • 2 cups lettuce, chopped
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, finely chopped
  • 1 cup black beans
  • 2 small tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 cup grated cheddar cheese or mexican cheese blend
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • salsa, optional

Preparation

1. Place one tostada on a plate.
2. Spread 1 tablespoon of guacamole on the tostada.
3. Layer lettuce, chicken, beans, tomatoes, and cheese on top of the guacamole.
4. Place another tostada on top and repeat layering. Top with a dollop of sour cream.
5. Continue with remaining tostadas and ingredients and serve.
Make N' Share!
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Hi, I’m Catherine. Mama of three. A Kentucky girl living in California. Here’s what I know: all kids can be great eaters and mealtime must be easy. My passion is creating simple, healthy recipes that can be enjoyed by the whole family.

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9 comments

  • Lori

    Sounds so yummy! Where did you find the whole grain tostada shells?

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  • Kelly Gilbert

    I've got to try this one! It looks yummy :)

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  • Vanessa

    What a great idea! Thank you!

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  • April

    I'm always impressed at the variety of foods you get your kids to eat--especially the stories about when they were toddlers! It never occured to me to let my 2 year old eat lettuce. I figured he could choke on it. Your recipes really make me more willing to let him try more things. :) Thanks!

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    • Connie P

      Another great way is to give them the heart of the romaine lettuce (the little leaves) and let them dip it in the dressing like chips...my girls love it!

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  • Beth

    I just started making this for my family- except I've been baking my tortillia in the oven at 350 until they get crispy (about 5-8 minutes), and it seems to be a healthier (maybe) alternative to the fried ones- plus it's SUPER yummy. I'm not 100% on how good it is for you, but maybe baking other alternatives?

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  • Erika C

    Perfect timing!I just bought tostada shells yesterday. For those watching calories, I found at Walmart,of all places,a brand called Sanissimo.They seem healthy and extremely low in cals.It's oven baked everything from mini tostada,nacho chips,etc. Just FYI.

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  • Danielle

    To April, it was actually this website that had me offering things to my child that I wouldn't of before. Who would've known how much toddlers like salads? Haha.

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  • Betsy

    Great idea to let the kiddos get some frustration out on their food. We've been eating lots of tostadas around here lately, love the idea of having him smash it.

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