Molletes, Mexico’s beloved open faced sandwiches, are quick, healthy and budget friendly meal perfect for everyone. You only need 4 ingredients and they can be ready in about 15 minutes.
What Are Molletes
They are a very common meal or snack for Mexicans. You’ll also find them at most restaurants and usually are on offer in the appetizers or snacks section.
Molletes Mexicanos are Traditionally Vegetarian
These refried beans crispy breads are a traditional or authentic Mexican vegetarian dish.
Believe it or not there are many traditionally meatless Mexican foods…So next time you hear someone say that we can’t be meatless and be Mexican, tell them they crazy! LOL
Ingredients for Molletes
The ingredients are incredibly simple and I bet you may always have them or something similar at home all the time.
- Bolillo bread rolls: This rustic bread rolls can be found at any Mexican food store. Check the tips section below for alternatives.
- Refried beans: You can use homemade or a good tasting and healthy store bought, your choice. Just make sure they’re not too runny, you should be able to spread them over the bread easily.
- Cheese: You can use shredded or sliced. Check the tips below for recommended types.
- Pico de gallo salsa: This is for topping them right before serving.
- Bolillo Alternatives: Try telera and if that’s not available then use French bread or a baguette.
- Cheese Alternatives: If you don’t have access to the previously mentioned Mexican ones, mozzarella or Monterrey Jack are great alternatives and they melt well.
- Salsas to Use: Pico de gallo or salsa verde or salsa molcajeteada. Or even just chopped jalapeños in a pinch.
- Beans Alternative: Instead of refried pinto beans you can use black beans, they are actually more common to use than the pintos.
What Bread to Use
Most people use bolillos, you could use a telera instead if you don’t happen to have bolillos.
In a pinch you could even use sliced baguettes. You want a rusty or crisp kind of bread roll. A soft textured one will be harder to spread with the beans.
What Cheese to Use
The best cheese to use is one that melts well.
I personally like to use Manchego cheese, queso Menonita, or Oaxaca cheese.
In the “Ingredient Variations” section I offer more alternatives for those that can’t find the 3 cheeses I listed above.
What Salsa to Use
The salsa used for topping molletes that you’ll see most commonly is pico de gallo salsa.
Some people will drizzle an additional blended salsa over the pico de gallo. Or in a pinch if you only have a blended salsa, like salsa verde, or a chunky tomato salsa, like molcajete salsa, either of those is also fine to use.
If you have none of the ones mentioned, well in a pinch you could top with some pickled jalapeños or hot sauce from a jar.
Should You Use Butter or Mayo
Some people like to spread butter onto the bolillo halves before spreading the refried beans over them. Sometimes these people will also toast the bolillo before topping with the beans.
I don’t personally do it but it is a popular option to try.
The traditional recipe is incredibly easy to veganize.
Make sure you make my homemade vegan refried beans, or buy them at the store just make sure they’re vegan.
The bolillos and teleras are vegan breads.
For the cheese just make sure to use your favorite melting vegan cheese.
The rest of the instructions are exactly the same.
Molletes Recipe | How to Make Authentic Mexican Molletes
Ok amigos below is the written recipes. Please make sure you leave me a comment with a rating to let me know how you liked this delectable and easy recipe. Enjoy!
- Preheat the oven to 400F and have a baking sheet ready. If you need to make the pico de gallo salsa do so now.
- Slice the bolillos in half going lengthwise. If you want you can remove a bit of the inside.
- Spread half a cup of refried beans over each bolillo halft.
- Sprinkle half a cup of shredded cheese over each half.
- Bake in center of oven until the cheese is melted.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.
- Top with the pico de gallo salsa. Serve and enjoy.
Serving Suggestions | How to Serve Them
Molletes are traditionally simple served with just a bit of extra pico de gallo and maybe some blended salsa for more heat.
You could also serve some pickled carrots on the side, if desired. I have easy and delicious recipe already here on the blog, zanahorias en escabeche.
If you’d like to make this a bigger meal you could serve a small bowl of soup like my fideo soup. But quite honestly the molletes are a meal all their own.