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TIP OF THE DAY: Serve Tortillas With The Salad Course

Adapt this dinner plate as a first course or
snack. Photo courtesy Weldon Owen.


We saw this healthful lunch or dinner plate in the book, Healthy in a Hurry: Simple, Wholesome Recipes for Every Meal of the Day, by Karen Ansel and Charity Ferreira. We repurposed the idea as a snack or first course.

The authors suggest a healthful meal of two small tortillas topped with salsa and chicken, and a side of nutritious beans.

We especially like this idea to use up leftover chicken, grilled seafood or tofu.

Once you have your protein, make or buy fresh mango salsa (you can substitute peach salsa, but mango provides more complex flavor).

Then, just cook the tortillas, assemble and serve. If you’d like to turn this into a salad course, replace the beans in the photo with dressed greens.


Serving size for a snack, first course or salad course: 1 tortilla. The mango salsa recipe makes 1-1/2 cups, enough salsa for 8 tortillas.



  • 6″ corn tortillas
  • Mango salsa
  • 1-2 ounces grilled chicken or tofu, 1 large shrimp or scallop or two smaller pieces
  • Garnish: thinly-sliced radishes or jicama matchsticks

    Mango Salsa Ingredients

  • 1 ripe mango, peeled, pitted, and diced (how to cut a mango)
  • 1 small red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, ribs and seeds removed, diced
  • 1 jalapeño, ribs and seeds removed, minced
  • 1 small cucumber, peeled and diced
  • 3 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • Salt and pepper to taste

    1. MAKE SALSA. Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and blend.

    2. COOK TORTILLAS. Heat a dry cast iron skillet or other small, heavy pan over medium high heat. Add 1/6 teaspoon (half of the 1/8 teaspoon measure) olive oil to the center of the pan. Place the tortilla in the pan and swish it around so that the oil evenly coats the pan. Cook the tortilla for 5 seconds, flip and cook the other side for 5 seconds.



    1. Place the tortilla in the center of on a luncheon-size plate; if including a green salad, use a dinner plate and place the tortilla on one side of the plate.

    2. Top with 2 tablespoons of drained salsa; top salsa with the protein and garnish. Add optional green salad and serve.

    Corn is a whole grain, so corn tortillas are more nutritious—and more flavorful—than those made from refined white flour.

    If you enjoy snacking on tortilla chips, making your own corn tortilla bowls is a better option: Chips can have quite a bit of added salt.


    Want to make healthy, meals? Pick up a copy of Healthy In A Hurry. Photo courtesy Weldon Owen.


    For more tortilla fun, you can buy tortilla bowl molds in large, for salads and other foods, or mini size to hold salsa, individual portions of guacamole, etc.

    We really enjoy a “tortilla salad”—like the ones served in restaurants in jumbo tortilla bowls. Add lettuce or other greens and a protein, and you have an appealing light lunch or dinner. Eat as much of the tortilla as you like—it’s better for you than most bread.

    To make your own, get a set of these nonstick tortilla bowl molds.


    Related Food Videos: For more food videos, check out The Nibble's Food Video Collection.

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