Ground Beef Tostadas


It’s Taco Tuesday! However, tonight at our house, it was Tostada Tuesday. I didn’t need to add much seasoning to my ground beef for our tostadas. Instead, I decided to flavor my ground beef with kosher salt, pepper, a small can of diced green chiles and a can of red Chile sauce.

I started by sautéing an onion in olive oil for about five minutes and then adding three cloves of minced garlic.


Next, I added the lean ground beef, salt and pepper and cooked the meat until it was browned and crumbly. Once the meat was cooked thoroughly, I added a can of green chiles, mixed everything together and poured the can of red Chile sauce onto the meat and stirred again.

I let the meat mixture simmer for about 10 minutes to let the sauce thicken. While the meat was simmering, I heated a can of refried beans. I always choose non-fat refried beans, but feel free to use what you like.


While the beans heated and the sauce thickened, I pulled the toppings for our tostadas together. This dinner was quick and easy to make! It’s the perfect dinner to make after a busy day at the office or a busy day out running errands. Everything came together in about a half an hour.


1 pound lean ground beef

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium onion, diced

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 teaspoon kosher salt

3/4 teaspoon pepper

1 4-ounce can of diced green chiles

1 10-ounce can of red Chile sauce

15-1/2 ounce can non-fat refried beans

1 large tomato

1/4 cup of cilantro, chopped

sour cream (I use low-fat or non-fat)

cheddar cheese (I use reduced fat)

small can of sliced black olives


  1. Heat oil in large skillet.
  2. Add onion and cook for 5-7 minutes, until onion starts to become translucent. Add garlic and stir together.
  3. Add beef, salt and pepper to skillet and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until meat has browned.
  4. Add green chiles and stir. Pour red Chile sauce into pan and mix together, cooking about 10 minutes until sauce starts to thicken.
  5. Shred lettuce, grate cheese, and chop tomato and cilantro.
  6. Spread tostada shell with beans and top with ground beef, lettuce, cheese, tomato, cilantro, sour cream and black olives.


Until next time, Kris






Roasted Salmon Tacos


Instead of Taco Tuesday for tomorrow night, we had Mexican Monday tonight. I had already planned on making chili for dinner for Tuesday because San Diego is expecting a winter storm … lots of rain and wind will be coming our way. The rain actually started this evening, it’s so cozy!

Last week I watched an episode of Ina Garten’s where she prepared roasted salmon tacos. This gave me the idea to make my fish tacos using salmon, instead of the cod that I usually use. I made up my own recipe for the salmon, so I could blog it for all of you. I started with an almost 2 pound piece of salmon. On top of the salmon, I squeezed the juice of two limes and sprinkled the zest of one lime.

In a small dish, I mixed together kosher salt, chili powder, dried oregano and garlic powder.


I sprinkled this over the fish and placed it into a preheated 425 degree oven for 20 minutes.


While the salmon was roasting, I mixed together a sauce for my tacos that consisted of sour cream, the zest and juice of one lime, kosher salt and several dashes of hot sauce.


I sliced two avocados for us to top our tacos with. I also had shredded cabbage that I added to my taco, as well as black beans.


I heated my corn and wheat tortillas in the microwave for 45 seconds. I wanted them nice and warm, which they were! On top of the tortilla, I spread a little of my sauce.


Directly on top of the sauce, I added my cabbage and then the black beans. On top of the black beans, I placed my salmon, topping it with a couple avocado slices and another drizzle of sauce. I did not add cheese to these tacos. I was looking to make a very healthy fish taco and didn’t want to include the fat in cheese. I chose to use the healthier fat of an avocado.

Ingredients for Fish

1 salmon filet

2 limes (zest of 1, juice of 2)

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1/2 teaspoon chili powder

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

Directions for Fish

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Place salmon on a baking sheet.
  3. Mix together salt, chili powder, oregano and garlic powder in small dish.
  4. Zest lime and set aside.
  5. Squeeze lime juice and sprinkle zest over fish.
  6. Sprinkle seasoning mix over fish.
  7. Roast for 20-25 minutes.

Ingredients for Sauce

1/2 cup light sour cream

zest and juice of one lime

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

5 dashes hot sauce

Directions for Sauce

  1. Mix together all ingredients and stir.


Until next time, Kris


Flank Steak and Corn Tacos


Since last night was Tuesday, I made tacos for dinner. I chose flank steak as the protein for my tacos.

I started by marinating my steak. I sprinkled kosher salt, pepper and Chile lime seasoning over both sides of the steak. After that, I squeezed the juice of two limes (making sure to set aside the zest of one of those limes) onto the meat. I then added minced garlic, minced shishito peppers and the lime zest.

I set the meat in the refrigerator for 2 hours to marinate.


The shishito peppers are something I’ve seen at Trader Joe’s and wanted to try. I picked up the bag to read the description of the shishito peppers. This is what I learned ….

I liked that they are described as a milder pepper with a citrusy flavor. I thought this would go well with the lime. These peppers are really good, and pretty cute!

I removed the meat from the refrigerator about a half hour before grilling it, so I could bring it to room temperature. I grilled the steak on my indoor grill pan for about 8 to 10 minutes per side.

I also bought corn on the cob to grill and use with my tacos. I bought a package of corn on the cob from Trader Joe’s and microwaved it for the requested four minutes. Once that was done, I added my corn to the grill pan so I could char it some for my tacos.

While the meat was cooking, I prepared my taco toppings. I shredded pepper jack cheese, cut two avocados, chopped some cilantro, and quartered mini heirloom tomatoes.


I warmed my tortillas over the open flame on my gas burner. Before layering the shell with my ingredients, I spread a bit of light sour cream onto the shell. I wanted my sour cream to be the base of my taco, vs. serving it as a dollop on top. Once the sour cream was spread on my corn tortillas, I placed a few heirloom tomatoes, the avocado, the cheese and then the meat. I topped the taco with the corn.

Luckily there were leftovers! Dennis happily packed those up and took them to work for lunch today.

This marinade would work fabulously with chicken as well and I think it would be wonderful for fish tacos, too!


  • 1 flank steak
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 4 shishito peppers
  • zest of 1 lime and juice of 2 limes
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Chile lime seasoning
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus enough to brush on corn


Sprinkle both sides of steak with salt, pepper and Chile lime seasoning. Place in a glass dish. Squeeze the lime juice over the steak and add the garlic, peppers and lime zest. Cover and place in refrigerator for 1-2 hours to marinate.

Brush corn with olive oil, set aside. Heat olive oil in grill pan and once pan is hot, place steak on to cook. Cook for 8-10 minutes per side, less if you like your meat a little on the rare side. (My family likes it cooked medium, so I cooked it for 8-10 minutes.) Cook corn on the other end of the grill pan at the same time, just long enough to char it a bit.

Once meat is done, set aside to rest for 10 minutes.While the meat is resting, cut the corn kernels off the ears. Cut the meat into cubes for the tacos. Enjoy!

Until next time, Kris

Roasted Bell Pepper Tacos


This past Saturday I sat down to compile my menus for the week and put together my grocery lists. I knew I wanted to make tacos for tonight, but wanted to come up with something a little bit different, a little bit unexpected. I decided I’d make my tacos in bell pepper halves that I would roast with a bit of olive oil and kosher salt. I wanted simple, clean ingredients … I did not want my taco meat to be saucy at all, just straight up ground beef that I would season with the Mexican flavors I wanted in tonight’s dish. I topped my “tacos” with healthy ingredients … micro greens, vegetarian, refried beans, diced jalapeños, halved grape tomatoes, and shredded sharp white cheddar cheese, light sour cream and a dab of salsa.

If you are looking for a great taco Tuesday meal that is light and healthy, I’d definitely give this one a try. If you do, please let me know what you think. I’d love your feedback.

I started by cutting my bell peppers in half and removing the seeds and membrane. I then lightly brushed olive oil on the edges of the pepper and sprinkled a pinch of kosher salt. I roasted the peppers for 20 minutes in a preheated 350 degree oven. (Sidenote: These would be great on mini bell peppers and served as an heavy appetizer for a party.)


While the peppers were roasting, I browned my ground beef. I did not add oil to my pan, but I did spray it with cooking spray. To the ground beef, I added kosher salt, pepper, dried oregano, cumin, garlic powder and chili powder. Once the meat was browned, I drained the fat.

Once the peppers were done roasting, I started filling them. I started with micro greens (you could easily use shredded lettuce or cilantro). Next I added a tablespoon of refried beans to the pepper. On top of that, I added ground beef and topped that with diced jalapeños, halved grape tomatoes, a dollop of light sour cream and a bit of salsa.

This dinner was nice and light, yet very satisfying.

(I made 2 pounds of ground beef so that I’d have enough for leftovers later in the week. You could easily halve this recipe according to the amount of people you are serving.)


  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus a pinch for the peppers
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
  • 3 teaspoons dried oregano
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 3-6 bell peppers (red, orange, yellow, green – your choice, a mix of color is nice)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil


diced jalapeño, halved grape tomatoes, shredded sharp white cheddar cheese, sour cream and salsa


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut peppers in half, removing the seeds and membrane. Lay on a baking sheet. Brush edges with olive oil and sprinkle with kosher salt.

Spray a large skillet with cooking spray and add ground beef. Add salt, pepper, oregano, cumin, garlic powder, and chili powder. Cook meat until brown and crumbly. Drain fat.

Heat refried beans.

“Stuff” bell pepper “taco shells”. Start with micro greens or lettuce. Add beans, ground beef and toppings of your choice. I used cherry tomatoes, diced jalapeños, shredded white cheddar cheese, sour cream and salsa.


Until next time, Kris



Chicken Tostadas Marinated in Cilantro Dressing


One of my favorite fast food restaurants is El Pollo Loco. I’ve always enjoyed El Pollo Loco, but even more so now that they’ve introduced an under 500 calorie menu. This is where I choose to eat if we happen to be heading out for a quick bite on a weeknight because I know I can eat healthy and my meal will be right around 460-480 calories. I leave feeling good about what I’ve eaten, and not too full. Most recently, they introduced chicken tostadas to their under 500 calorie menu. This is what I’ve ordered the last several times I’ve gone in, so I decided I would make my own version for Taco Tuesday this week.

I bought a package of chicken tenders that was just over one pound. I cut each tender into four chunks – about 1-1/2 inch pieces – and placed them into a glass bowl. In a smaller glass bowl, I mixed together kosher salt, pepper, dried oregano and cumin. I poured the seasonings onto the chicken and mixed it all together.

I then added 2 teaspoons of jarred, minced garlic and mixed that onto the chicken. After I mixed the garlic on, I added the zest and juice of two limes.

Once everything was mixed into the chicken, I added a bottle of cilantro salad dressing. I bought this particular one at Trader Joe’s. I’ve also bought Cilantro Pepita Salad Dressing that I find at Vons. I’ve used that one before to marinate chicken breasts, it’s so good.


I covered my chicken with plastic wrap and placed the bowl in the refrigerator to marinate for four hours. When I was getting ready to cook my chicken, I took it out of the fridge to come to room temperature. While it was coming to room temperature, I prepared my toppings for my tostadas.

I sautéd the chicken in one tablespoon of olive oil for about 20 minutes, until the liquid from the marinade had reduced. I scraped up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan for extra flavor.


I heated a can of fat free, vegetarian refried beans. This would be my “glue” and base for my toppings. I spread the beans on my tostadas and layered from there. By the way, these tostadas were only 120 calories for two, not bad! Once the beans were down, I added shredded green cabbage. On top of that I added my chicken, quartered heirloom tomatoes, cilantro, shredded pepper jack cheese and a dollop of sour cream that I topped with a sprinkling of cumin for color.

I didn’t show it on my pictures, but I also topped my tostada with a half an avocado. This was a compete meal, you don’t even need tortilla chips because, let’s face it, a tostada is like one big tortilla chip. I used an entire package of mini heirloom tomatoes, which were too many. I did this on purpose though, as I wanted those leftover tomatoes for my lunch tomorrow. I packaged them up with the leftover cilantro and a tablespoon of shredded pepper jack cheese. This will definitely be a light and refreshing lunch for me.

My dear friend, Sandi, had sent me a message asking for simple, cost effective meals she can put into her crockpot. I definitely think this chicken would cook well in a slow cooker. Sandi, if you’re reading this, you could marinate the chicken overnight and in the morning, put it all in the slow cooker, set it to cook on low for 8 hours and you will come home to a wonderful meal. All you have to do is get your toppings and beans ready. Enjoy!


  • 1-1/4 pounds chicken breast tenders
  • 1 bottle cilantro salad dressing
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 2 teaspoons jarred, minced garlic
  • 1/2 – 1 package mini heirloom tomatoes
  • fresh cilantro, chopped
  • zest and juice of 2 limes
  • sour cream
  • shredded pepper jack cheese
  • shredded cabbage
  • fat free, vegetarian refried beans (or refried bean of your choice)
  • avocado, sliced
  • package of tostadas


Cut chicken tenders into 1-1/2 inch pieces (you will get about 4 pieces per tender). Place in a glass bowl. In a smaller glass bowl, mix together salt, pepper, oregano and cumin. Pour over chicken and mix together with the chicken. Add the minced garlic and the zest and juice of the limes, mix again. Add cilantro dressing and cover. Refrigerate for 2-4 hours.

Heat olive oil in large sauté pan. Add chicken and all of marinade. Cook until chicken is no longer pink in the middle and marinade reduces and thickens – about 20 minutes. Scrape up any brown bits off the bottom of the pan.

Heat beans. Spread beans on each tostada. Build your tostada, starting with the cabbage. Add chicken, tomatoes, cilantro, cheese, sour cream and a dash of cumin. Finish with sliced avocado. Enjoy!

Until next time, Kris