Vegan Tostadas with Smoky Tempeh and Mango Slaw

An easy 30-minute meal that will please everyone! These Vegan Tostadas are piled high with smoky tempeh and a bright and zesty mango slaw.

A 30-minute meal that will please everyone! These Smoky Tempeh Tostadas are crispy & satisfying, and the Mango Cabbage Slaw is the perfect tangy complement.

Vegan Tostadas with Smoky Tempeh and Mango Slaw

Funny story about these vegan tostadas. I actually made this recipe randomly with no plan to post it, but it turned out so delicious that I couldn’t wait to share it with you guys!

I had some leftover corn tortillas after making the Spicy Braised Tofu Tostadas from the Everyday Cooking book by the team at Minimalist Baker. Both the tostadas and the cookbook are amazeballs, so I highly recommend checking them out for recipes that will knock your socks off. I loved Dana’s tostadas so much that I wanted to do something similar with my leftover corn tortillas.

One of the cool things this vegan tostada recipe is that most of it is build-your-own, which is great for entertaining or just picky eaters at the dinner table! All you have to do is lay out the ingredients and toppings. Then let everyone build their own tostadas for a one-way ticket to mealtime bliss. Easy peasy. But the best thing about these vegan tostadas? They’re done in 30 minutes.

I hope I got the point across that you need to make these ASAP for dinner, lunch, breakfast…heck, they’re good enough to have for dessert. Weird? I know. They’re just so damn good, so let’s go!

a bowl of cubed tempeh and a separate bowl of marinade

a pan with diced tempeh being fried on the stove

How to Make Smoky Tempeh for Vegan Tostadas

I’m a tempeh > tofu gal any day, so that’s what we’re going with today for this vegan tostada recipe! Tempeh is pretty “meaty” and satisfying, making it the perfect food to turn any carnivore into a #1 plant fan.

I cut my tempeh into bite-sized cubes for this vegan tostada recipe. You could cut it into strips if you prefer, but I find these vegan tostadas easier to eat when the tempeh is cubed.

We’re making a spicy, smoky marinade for the tempeh made with soy sauce, lots of spices and the secret ingredient (although I guess it’s not so secret if I’m telling you) – liquid smoke. The liquid smoke makes the tempeh taste like it was grilled in the backyard, which is one of my favorite summer flavors. If you don’t have liquid smoke, you could also use smoked paprika for a similar effect in these vegan tostadas.

Here’s how to make the smoky tempeh:

  1. Make the marinade by combining soy sauce, chili powder, hot sauce, cumin, liquid smoke, garlic powder, onion powder, and pepper in a small bowl.
  2. Whisk the marinade together to combine and adjust the seasoning as needed
  3. Pour the marinade over the tempeh, stir to coat and set aside for 5-10 minutes
  4. Heat oil in a medium skillet, then arrange tempeh in the skillet without overcrowding the pan
  5. Cook tempeh on the first side for 4-5 minutes, until browned. Flip the tempeh and cook for another 3-4 minutes.

six corn tortillas arranged on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper

six corn tostadas on a pan lined with parchment paper

How to Make Homemade Tostadas

You could totally buy a pack of tostadas from the store, but it’s pretty simple to make your own tostadas at home if you already have tortillas on hand! You’ll definitely want to use corn tortillas over flour tortillas as flour tortillas won’t crisp up quite the same.

Here’s how to make tostadas:

  • Preheat your oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper
  • Arrange corn tortillas on a baking sheet, ensuring that none of the tortillas are overlapping
  • Brush each tortilla with oil until lightly coated
  • Bake for 10 minutes, until crispy and golden
  • Cool tostadas on the baking sheet until they come down to room temperature

a bowl of cabbage and mango slaw

How to Make Mango Slaw 

Since the tempeh is perfectly salty and spiced, I wanted something a little tangy and slightly sweet on these vegan tostadas to complement it. Mango slaw to the rescue! Since I added cabbage to my mango slaw, it’s got that crisp crunch with a bit of fruity deliciousness from the mango. Just think about what you’re getting in each bite: crunchy corn tortilla, smoky tempeh, tangy cabbage, sweet mango, and creamy avocado…uhmmmm, can you say flavor bomb?! I’m seriously already craving these vegan tostadas for lunch today.

To make the slaw, shred up some red cabbage, dice up a mango, mince your cilantro and mix it all together with some fresh lime juice, apple cider vinegar, agave nectar and a healthy pinch of salt. You can make your slaw while your tempeh is cooking, but if you have a little extra time, I recommend making the mango slaw first so that you can let it really sit and get super tangy while you work on the rest of the components for your vegan tostadas.

an overhead shot of three tostadas each topped with smoky tempeh and a mango slaw

More Vegan Tostada Recipes

I could have Mexican food every day and never get tired of it. (Read: I’m making these vegan tostadas every week and nothing can stop me.) Seriously, who can resist guac, crispy tortillas, and that delicious blend of spices? If you’re craving more crunchy goodness, then check out one of my other vegan tostadas below!

How to make:

Vegan Tostadas with Smoky Tempeh and Mango Slaw

An easy 30-minute meal that will please everyone! These Vegan Tostadas are piled high with smoky tempeh and a bright and zesty mango slaw.

Prep Time:
10 mins
Cook Time:
15 mins
Total Time:
25 mins
three tempeh tostadas each topped with mango slaw
3 1x
Rating: 4.9 from 9 reviews


  • 1 8-ounce package tempeh, cut into thin chunks
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce or liquid aminos
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/21 teaspoon hot sauce (depending on how spicy you want it)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 6 corn tortillas
  • Oil for cooking
  • 1 1/2 cups red cabbage, shredded
  • 3/4 cup mango, diced
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, finely minced, plus more for topping
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon agave nectar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Additional toppings: cilantro, avocado, salsa, lettuce


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Place the tempeh in a medium bowl.
  3. In a small bowl, add soy sauce, chili powder, hot sauce, cumin, liquid smoke, garlic powder, onion powder, and pepper. Whisk to combine. Pour over tempeh; stir until evenly coated. Set aside for 5-10 minutes.
  4. Place corn tortillas on a baking sheet. Lightly brush with oil. Bake for 10 minutes, until crispy and golden.
  5. In a skillet over medium heat, add the tempeh. Let it cook on each side for 4-5 minutes, until browned. Flip the chunks; cook for another 3-4 minutes.
  6. While the tempeh and tortillas are cooking, make the slaw. Add red cabbage, mango, cilantro, lime juice, vinegar, agave, and salt to a medium bowl. Stir to combine.
  7. Serve by scooping the tempeh onto the tortillas, then top with slaw and any other desired toppings.