Chalupas Recipe - Authentic Mexican Dish with Pinto Beans and Pork


Chalupas Recipe - Authentic Mexican Dish with Pinto Beans and Pork
Region / culture: Mexico | Preparation time: 15 minutes | Cooking time: 5 hours 30 minutes | Servings: 6-8



Chalupas are a traditional Mexican dish that consists of a fried tortilla topped with various ingredients such as beans, meat, cheese, and salsa. This hearty and flavorful dish is perfect for a family dinner or a casual gathering with friends.


Chalupas have been a popular dish in Mexico for centuries, with origins dating back to the Aztec civilization. The word "chalupa" is believed to come from the Nahuatl word "chalchihuitl," which means canoe. This is because the shape of the fried tortilla resembles a canoe. Over the years, chalupas have evolved to include a variety of fillings and toppings, making them a versatile and delicious meal option.


How to prepare

  1. Place all ingredients into a Dutch oven, an electric slow cooker, or a heavy kettle.
  2. Cover and simmer for approximately 5 hours, or until the roast easily falls apart and the beans are cooked through.
  3. Uncover and continue cooking for about 0.5 hour, until the desired thickness is reached.


  • Vegetarian option: Replace the pork roast with tofu or tempeh for a meat-free version of chalupas.
  • Seafood option: Use shrimp or fish as the main protein in the chalupas for a seafood twist.
  • Breakfast option: Top the chalupas with scrambled eggs, bacon, and avocado for a delicious breakfast dish.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To save time, you can use canned beans instead of cooking them from scratch.

- For a spicier chalupa, add more chili powder or chopped chile peppers.

- Make sure to simmer the ingredients for at least 5 hours to ensure that the flavors are fully developed.

- Serve the chalupas hot and fresh for the best taste and texture.

Serving Suggestions

Serve the chalupas with a side of Mexican rice, guacamole, and sour cream for a complete meal.

Cooking Techniques

Slow cooking: Simmer the ingredients for several hours to allow the flavors to meld together and create a rich and savory dish.

- Frying: Fry the tortillas until crispy to add a crunchy texture to the chalupas.

Ingredient Substitutions

Black beans or kidney beans can be used instead of pinto beans.

- Ground beef or chicken can be used instead of pork roast.

Make Ahead Tips

You can prepare the chalupa filling in advance and store it in the refrigerator for up to 2 days before assembling and serving.

Presentation Ideas

Arrange the chalupas on a platter and garnish with fresh cilantro, sliced jalapenos, and a squeeze of lime for a colorful and appetizing presentation.

Pairing Recommendations

Chalupas pair well with a cold Mexican beer or a refreshing margarita for a festive and enjoyable meal.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store any leftover chalupas in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave or oven until heated through before serving.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of chalupas contains approximately 350 calories.


Each serving of chalupas contains approximately 30 grams of carbohydrates.


Each serving of chalupas contains approximately 15 grams of fats.


Each serving of chalupas contains approximately 25 grams of proteins.

Vitamins and minerals

Chalupas are a good source of vitamin C, iron, and calcium.


Chalupas may contain allergens such as wheat (from the tortilla) and dairy (from the cheese).


Chalupas are a balanced meal option that provides a good mix of carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. They are also rich in vitamins and minerals, making them a nutritious choice for a satisfying meal.


Chalupas are a delicious and satisfying Mexican dish that is perfect for any occasion. With a rich history and a variety of flavors and textures, chalupas are sure to become a favorite in your household. Enjoy this traditional recipe with your family and friends for a memorable dining experience.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, I was drawn to it like a moth to a flame. It was a warm summer day, and I was visiting my friend Maria in her cozy little kitchen. Maria was a fantastic cook, and I always loved trying out new recipes with her.

On that particular day, Maria had invited me over to teach me how to make Chalupas, a traditional Mexican dish that she had learned from her own grandmother. The moment she started explaining the ingredients and the process, I was captivated. The thought of crispy fried tortillas topped with savory meat, beans, cheese, and fresh toppings was enough to make my mouth water.

Maria began by showing me how to make the chalupa shells. She took corn tortillas and fried them in hot oil until they were golden and crispy. The smell that filled the kitchen was heavenly, and I couldn't wait to try the finished product.

Next, Maria taught me how to make the filling for the chalupas. She cooked ground beef with onions, garlic, and a blend of Mexican spices until it was perfectly seasoned and fragrant. Then she added refried beans to the meat mixture, creating a rich and flavorful filling that was sure to satisfy any appetite.

As we assembled the chalupas, Maria explained the importance of layering the ingredients just right. First, a generous spoonful of the meat and bean mixture, followed by a sprinkling of shredded cheese, a dollop of sour cream, and a handful of fresh lettuce and diced tomatoes. The final touch was a drizzle of salsa and a sprinkle of chopped cilantro.

Once the chalupas were assembled, we placed them in the oven to melt the cheese and warm the toppings. The smell that wafted from the oven was intoxicating, and I couldn't wait to dig in.

When the timer dinged, we pulled the chalupas out of the oven and plated them up. The crispy shells held up perfectly under the weight of the toppings, and each bite was a delicious mix of flavors and textures. The savory meat, creamy beans, and fresh toppings all worked together in perfect harmony, creating a dish that was truly unforgettable.

As I savored my first bite of chalupa, I knew that this recipe would become a staple in my own kitchen. The combination of flavors and the simple yet satisfying preparation made it a perfect dish for any occasion. I thanked Maria for teaching me her family recipe and couldn't wait to share it with my own loved ones.

Over the years, I've made chalupas countless times, each time adding my own twist or variation to the recipe. I've shared it with friends and family, and it always receives rave reviews. The memories of that day in Maria's kitchen are forever etched in my mind, and I am grateful for the opportunity to learn such a delicious and comforting dish.

So, if you ever find yourself craving a hearty and flavorful meal, look no further than a plate of homemade chalupas. With a few simple ingredients and a little bit of love, you can create a dish that will warm your soul and satisfy your hunger. Just remember to savor each bite and cherish the memories that come with it. Happy cooking!


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