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Introducing Tlayudas! Traditional Oaxacan street food, tlayudas are like a Mexican style “pizza”, made with a crispy tortilla, silky refried beans, optional meat and cheese, delicious cabbage slaw, avocado and cilantro. This lightened-up version is vegan-adaptable and loaded with healthy veggies!
It’s time to start living the life you’ve imagined.
I’m so excited to share this recipe for Tlayudas with you because I know you are going to love them!
What are Tlayudas?
Thayludas (pronounced tley-oo-dahs ) originate from the Oaxacan region of Mexico are like Mexican style pizza, with a crispy tortilla as the base, creamy black beans as the “sauce”, then traditionally topped with Mexican string cheese and chorizo, avocado, tomatoes and cilantro.
Here above are what traditional Tlayudas look like, a specialty of Oaxaca, Mexico. Sooooooo delicious! While we were in Oaxaca, we had many versions of Tlayuda, most often with black beans, chorizo, avocado, tomato and cilantro and melty Oaxacan string cheese.
To be clear- this recipe is I’m sharing is not traditional– it is an adaption. Most of what you’ll find in Oaxaca look like these above- but we happened upon a healthy cafe that served up some vegan tlayudas piled high with crunchy slaw more like a tostada and I, of course, was smitten and wanted to share.
So to reiterate, this is not a typical tlayuda, but a lightened up, vegan version.
This recipe is vegan-adaptable and full of veggies and flavor! What I love about it most is the great texture — they are deliciously addicting! Keep them vegan (my favorite) or add melty cheese, chicken carnitas, or turkey chorizo – so versatile! You could also add this walnut chorizo!
The secret to the texture is the super crispy tortilla (simply toasted in the oven) that gets lathered up with silky refried black beans. To keep these lean, I’ve topped them with a mound of flavorful Mexican Cabbage Slaw along with cucumbers, carrots, radishes, onion and cilantro. The recipe is adaptable- meaning if you have vegans and meat-eaters under the same roof, you can add chicken, chorizo or cheese to some, while keeping others vegan for mixed households.
Another fun option is to let guests or family build their own, customizing to their own tastes and preferences! A Tlayluda party!!!
Finish the tlayudas with sliced avocado, lime, hot sauce, Chipotle Mayo or Avocado-Cilantro Sauce. The cabbage slaw keeps well until the next day, making leftovers a tasty option.
How to make Tlayudas! | 30-second video
While the tortillas are toasting to a crisp in the oven, make the cabbage slaw.
For a fast option, use canned refried black beans, but sometimes, when you have little extra time try making refried beans at home with this recipe…they are so easy and delicious! They only take 10-15 minutes of actual hands-on time!
Chop the cabbage and make the slaw.
Remember you can always purchase pre-shredded cabbage to save time.
If adding chicken, you can quickly sear it, and season with salt, pepper, cumin and chili powder.
Or make a batch of this easy Turkey Chorizo!
Or try it with Walnut Chorizo for a totally Vegan version!
Or for a true Mexican Fiesta, make the Chicken Carnitas– so tasty!
Or keep it totally vegan- my favorite!
Once the tortillas are crispy, begin layering with silky, seasoned refried beans, optional chicken and optional cheese.
You can also melt cheese over the beans. Or keep this totally vegan without chicken or cheese! ( My favorite!)
Top with the flavorful slaw.
The crunchy tortilla paired with the warm creamy beans and the cool crunchy slaw is pure MAGIC!!!!
It seems too simple, yet it really works.
Tlayudas de Oaxaca – my new favorite dish!
A delicious healthy recipe you can whip up on weeknights.
The crispy tortillas can be toasted ahead (they keep well) and so can the slaw.
And if you have an extra 5 minutes…make the Avocado -Cilantro Sauce or the Chipotle Mayo.
Both are vegan adaptable- and add a creamy deliciousness!
The Avocado Cilantro Sauce is easy to whip in the food processor and adds a burst of flavor.
Spoon it over the Tlayudas, then top with a little cilantro.
Or drizzle the Tlayludas with some Chipotle Mayo ( aka mexican Secret sauce).
More Recipes you may like!
I hope you give these guys a try- they are so tasty!!! One of my favorite recipes on the blog.
- Prep Time: 20 mins
- Cook Time: 20 mins
- Total Time: 40 minutes
- Yield: 4 1x
- Category: vegan main
- Method: baked
- Cuisine: Mexican
How to makd Tlayudas! This healthy, lightened-up, version is vegan and GF adaptable! Feel free to add walnut chorizo, chicken carnitas or turkey chorizo! Made with a crispy tortilla, topped with refried beans, cheese (optional) cabbage slaw, avocado and cilantro.
- 4 whole-grain tortillas (or sub GF tortillas) 8-10 inches wide, or larger.
- 1/2 head of cabbage ( 14–16 ounces), shredded
- 1 cup shredded carrots
- 4 radishes -thinly sliced (optional)
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion – or sub pickled onions or pickled shallots
- 3/4 teaspoon salt, plus more taste
- 1/2 an english cucumber- sliced
- 1 tablespoon jalapeno- finely chopped- optional
- 1/4–1/2 cup scallions sliced
- 1/4–1/2 cup cilantro- chopped
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice, plus a little zest
- 1 can refried black beans (or make refried beans from scratch!) loosened with 1/4 cup water, seasoned with salt, cumin and coriander
- Optional: Chicken carnitas , walnut Chorizo, or Turkey Chorizo
- Optional: Oaxacan String cheese, Crumbled Queso Fresco Cheese, melty cheese
- Optional sauces- Chipotle Mayo and/or Avocado-Cilantro Sauce (below) I like both!
- Garnish with sliced avocado, cilantro, lime wedges, scallions, fresh summer tomatoes, hot sauce, or sour cream.
Avocado Cilantro Sauce:
- Pre-heat oven to 275 F
- Toast tortillas dry, directly on the oven racks ( no sheet pan) until crisp, about 20 minutes. This is key- they need to be very crispy and dry, not bendy. You can make these ahead.
- Combine the cabbage, carrots, radish, onion, and toss in a large bowl with the salt. ( This will seem like a LOT at first, but will it will release liquid and shrink down.)
- Add the cucumber, jalapeño, scallions and cilantro, Toss well, then add olive oil and lime juice and a little zest. Let it rest on the counter – or make this ahead and refrigerate.
- If making the avocado sauce– make this now- placing everything in a food processor and blending until smooth. Taste, adjust salt and spice level adding more jalapeño if needed. Place in a bowl.
- When ready to assemble, heat the refried beans, adding ¼-½ cup water (to loosen them) and using a fork, whip in a pinch of salt, cumin and coriander to season to taste.
- If using chicken or chorizo, heat them up now and if using cheese, turn on the broiler.
- To assemble, carefully lather up some beans on the tortilla ( like you pizza sauce on a pizza). At this point you could add chicken and cheese (and melt)- or leave off and keep it vegan. Top the warmed base with a generous mound of cool slaw. Spoon over avocado sauce(or sliced avocado) or Chipotle Mayo.
- Garnish with cilantro sprigs, hot sauce, lime wedge, pickled onions or shallots. Serve immediately (with knife and fork) while the beans are warm and the tortillas are still crisp.
The great thing about Tlayludas is how addable these are…..you can make some with meat and cheese (melted in the oven) while having some totally vegan with just the slaw. Or…let your family or guests “build their own”, with all the sides ready, and the oven set to broil, in case someone wants melty cheese.
Like a Tlayludas smorgasbord! Fun and tasty!
*For a more traditional Tlayuda, use refried black beans, browned chorizo, Mexican string cheese, bake until melty, top with fresh tomato, onion and cilantro!
- Serving Size: -Serves 4 with Avocado Sauce
- Calories: 406
- Sugar: 10.2 g
- Sodium: 788.6 mg
- Fat: 22.5 g
- Saturated Fat: 3.6 g
- Carbohydrates: 46.4 g
- Fiber: 14.4 g
- Protein: 10.3 g
- Cholesterol: 0 mg
Keywords: Tlayudas Recipe, mexican pizza recipe, mexican flat bread, vegan tostadas, mexican pizza, oaxacan street food, tlayuda,
Wow! The flavors in this recipe are incredible! We made the walnut chorizo from another one of your recipes, and it was delicious. Leftovers made an awesome Mexican-style Buddha bowl the next day for lunch! Thank you for creating such incredible recipes for our family to enjoy!!
Awesome Jen! Love it!
This recipe is SO good! Seems like a simplistic recipe but tastes so different and flavorful! I did a smashed black bean/ pinto bean mix for the protein and it was amazing. Will be making again!
Thanks Morgan- glad you gave it a go. I really like this one too- very satisfying!
Plss send more recipes this all are wonderful
This has become an easy weeknight staple in our house!
So glad you like this one Kristina!
I loved this! Perfect for vegan night. I am really trying to make more plant-based meals for dinner but it’s hard to please everyone’s palate. My husband and I loved this. I made the slaw, the avocado crema and the chipotle mayo. My husband and daughter added cheese but I had it with just the beans and it was filling and delicious! I didn’t miss the meat or the cheese. Thank you!
I’m so glad you gave this a try- it’s on of my favorites!
Delicious! And so healthy. I got the wrong tortillas and so they ended up more like tacos, but that was my fault and the flavor was amazing regardless.
Hummm. Sorry, maybe not for everyone. Did you change anything?
we all liked this tonight, vegans and non-vegans alike! We had It with the sriracha mayo….so yummy! Thank you…we have not made a bad recipe from you yet! 🙂
Right Julia- it is not traditional and I say this in the description. It is “my take” on a Tlayluda. I will link to a traditional Tlayuda recipe for those who would prefer that.
Hi! Sorry I’m from Oaxaca, but this is not a Tlayudas. This is a tostada and many ingredients aren’t belong to the real and original Tlayuda.
No, you are right, this is not a traditional Thayluda, like you can get at the market in downtown Oaxaca (or from the street vendors)- just a vegan version we had at healthy cafe while visiting there.
This is soooo good Sylvia, thank you!! I made your refried beans and chicken carnitas:) Yet another kickass recipe!! All texture, color and flavor. Definitely making this one again… infact, every recipe I’ve tried from your beautiful site (I’ve tried many) has been a hit. Thank you for the inspiration:)
Thanks so much Oleg!!!
This has turned into one of my favorite recipes all times. I love the mixture of flavors and have had this twice in as many weeks.
Awesome, thanks, great to hear! 🙌
Love it with the Mexican sauce
Yay!!! Great to hear. Thanks for sharing! 🙌
I was in Oaxaca and had exactly this, only with a bigger flour tortilla. 🙂 There are different versions.
This is my #1 favorite Mexican food of all time. I’ve traveled to Oaxaca just to eat tlayudas. This healthier version sounds amazing and I can’t wait to make it!
Another great recipe and my favourite so far. So full of flavour. I made it completely vegan but could easily accommodate the meat eaters. Thank you for teaching me so much about layering flavours and textures, it makes veganism so much more interesting.
Yay Anne! Im glad you liked this- One of my favorites!
Omg! This simple yet delicious meal was incredible, I’m going to say it’s probably the most delicious vegan meal I’ve ever had! Better than you would get at most restaurants and so easy to make at home. This is the first recipe from your site I’ve tried and I can’t wait to explore the rest! We made this without any olive oil and just had to add a litre extra water to the avo sauce, would probably also recommend 2 cans of refried beans if you are feeding 4, maybe that’s just because we couldn’t stop eating! 😋😘
Sorry meant to be a little extra water, not a litre!
So happy you liked this. One of my favorites!
We loved this. It made a lot of slaw, so the next time, I would cut it in half. Especially loved the avocado cream. I made my own refried beans
Delicious! And way more filling than I imagined. I was in the kitchen for 3 + hours (making the chicken carnitas, retried beams, chipotle May sauce and avo cilantro sauce, too!). But so worth it. Happy cinco de mayo!!
Glad you enjoyed it!!!
One of my favorites of your recipes! The avocado cilantro sauce is delish and really makes the dish! Here in Texas we eat ALOT of mexican food, but it’s not always the healthiest. This recipe is beautiful and healthy! BTW I love the poem and would love to know the author.
This recipe like all of the ones I have tried are wonderful! Can’t praise you enough! your homemade refried beans are really good – I never made them before x
Just made these and they were so good! And I made your homemade refried bean recipe too. Once I topped the tortilla with the refried beans, I added some shredded cheese and melted under the broiler. Thanks for sharing!
Yay!!! Glad you liked them!
Hi Claudia, Yes, of course feel free to use less salt!
Ok Sherie, it’s on there now…sorry about that!!!
OMG I have to reply.
I realy adore your pictures, they are so beautiful; its a feast to se a message from feastingathome is in my mailbox. And this recipe I HAVE to make 🙂
Thanks for you never ending inspiration!
Love from the Netherlands!
Hi Millie from the Netherlands!!! Awwww, this made me so happy- thank you!!! One day I hope to visit your amazing country!