Yucatecan Tostadas (Salbutes)

Yucatecan Tostadas (Salbutes)Recipe
Annabelle Breakey
Salbutes—crisp little handheld tortillas topped with shredded turkey, avocado, pickled onions, and cabbage or lettuce—are a popular street food in the Yucatán region of Mexico. Serve them for lunch or as a crisp and palate-refreshing snack after Thanksgiving. The sauce is quite hot, so use sparingly. (If you love heat, use 1 habanero chile, as is done in the Yucatán, instead of the 2 serranos.)


Makes 4 servings
Total time: 45 Minutes

Recipe from


Recipe Time

Total: 45 Minutes

Nutritional Information

Calories 530
Caloriesfromfat 54 %
Protein 27 g
Fat 32 g
Satfat 5 g
Carbohydrate 38 g
Fiber 5.6 g
Sodium 470 mg
Cholesterol 54 mg


1 red onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 cup distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil for frying
8 corn tortillas (4 in. or 6 in.)
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium white or yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon oregano
2 cups shredded cooked turkey
1 cup chicken broth
2 serrano chiles, seeded and minced
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 avocado, sliced
About 1 1/2 cups shredded green and/or red cabbage


1. In a small pan over high heat, cover red onion with cold water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and drain. Put red onion in a small bowl with vinegar, 1/2 tsp. salt, and pepper. Set aside to marinate at least 30 minutes at room temperature or up to 1 week covered and refrigerated.

2. To a small frying pan over high heat, add 1 in. of vegetable oil and heat to 375°. Fry tortillas, one at a time, until golden and crispy. Drain on paper towels.

3. Heat olive oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Add sliced white or yellow onion and 1/4 tsp. salt. Cook, stirring, until onions are soft, about 4 minutes. Add oregano and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add turkey and broth. Bring to a boil, lower heat to a steady simmer, and cook, partially covered, for 10 minutes to let flavors blend.

4. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine chiles, lime juice, orange juice, and remaining 1/4 tsp. salt. Set aside.

5. To assemble: Divide turkey-onion mixture among the 8 tortillas, then top each with avocado, cabbage, and drained pickled red onion (you will have extra onion; see Notes). Serve with serrano-citrus sauce.

Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.


Salbutes are best served on 4- to 6-in. tortillas, which make them much easier to pick up and eat. Look for the tortillas in large packs (they freeze well) at Latin American markets or in supermarkets with substantial Latin-food departments. Use leftover pickled red onion on sandwiches or salads.