These Mini Vegan Sopes with Homemade Refried Beans are the perfect food for Cinco de Mayo or for your next party for any occasion!
There’s something about a little bite-sized morsel of something really satisfyingly delicious. They’re always perfect for parties because nobody wants to sit down and eat a meal-sized portion of food while being a social butterfly, and besides, there are always so many treats to choose from, when they’re bite-sized, you can try them all!
Although Cinco de Mayo has passed by recently, it really got me thinking about Mexican-inspired party foods. I wanted something that was classicly Mexican, but easy to take to a party, and not just the standard chips and dip. I stumbled upon a recipe for sopes and thought I would give them a try.
What Are Sopes?
Now, I am half Mexican, but Sopes were not something I was familiar with. They are a lot like a homemade corn tortilla and a bit like a tostada. Someone I know even described them as a sort of Mexican Pizza! And of course, since I am vegan, I had to try making Vegan Sopes!
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They are made from delicious ground corn masa, which is basically a corn flour that is made into a dough. Then the dough is used to make tortillas, tamales, empanadas, pupusas, etc… It is very versatile, very delicious, and naturally gluten-free.
Sopes are traditionally a little thicker than a corn tortilla, and the sides are shaped to form a little “pie” while they are still warm. They are cooked on a flat griddle called a comal, which gives them a nice toasty flavor.
But, when I tried making them the traditional way I thought “Holy Cow! This is a lot of work! There must be an easier way! And that is how these Mini Vegan Sopes were born!
These are sopes with a little twist.
First of all, they are baked, so you can make a large batch all at once, instead of individually over the stove. Next, I have made them into little bite-sized treats that are perfect for taking to a party, for eating as a snack, or even as a meal. Trust me, it’s hard to eat just one!
I filled them with delicious, creamy refried pinto beans, vegan cheese, spicy salsa, and my own special guacamole recipe.
But of course they are very adaptable to whatever you want to fill them with. I prefer pinto beans, but you could use black beans. If you don’t feel like making your own refried beans, you can use some from a can. I prefer to make my whole beans from scratch using an Instant Pot. It is so easy and it makes the most delicious and creamy beans!
Choose your favorite salsa or hot sauce, your favorite vegan cheese or nutritional yeast, but I highly recommend using my special guacamole recipe. You can find the recipe for it in my free recipe e-book, available here.
To see how these Mini Vegan Sopes are made, watch the video.
Mini Vegan Sopes
A twist on traditional Mexican Sopes, these Mini Vegan Sopes are filled with creamy and delicious homemade refried beans, vegan cheese, spicy salsa, and fresh guacamole.
Corn Masa Sopes Shells, Baked
- 2 cups corn masa flour
- 1.5 cups water
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 spray oil optional
Homemade Refried Beans
- 2 cups pinto or black beans + liquid cooked
- 1-2 cloves garlic finely minced
- 1-2 tsps coconut or other oil
- 1/2 lime juiced
- 1 pinch salt to taste
- 1/2 cup Vegan cheese shreds I like Daiya Pepper Jack
- 1 cup guacamole Try my recipe!
- 1/2 cup salsa or hot sauce
- cilantro leaves optional
Preheat your oven to 375F.
To make the masa dough put the 2 cups masa flour into a mixing bowl. Add 1 cup of the water and mix with your hands to form a sticky dough.
If the dough seems a little dry, continue to add water, about 1 Tbsp. at a time until you get the consistency of a slightly stiff yet pliable dough. It should feel a bit like play-dough.
To form the balls, take a large pinch of the dough and roll it between your hands. The balls should be approximately 1" in in diameter. Continue this process until you have made all of the dough into balls. This makes approximately 18 balls.
You will need two muffin tins with a dozen cups each. You can spray the tins with oil if you like, but it is not necessary. Have the tins next to you while you roll out the balls individually.
Place one of the balls between two silicone mats, or between two large ziplock bags, or two sheets of waxed paper. Roll out with a rolling pin to 2.5-3 inches in diameter.
Take the flattened "tortilla" and place it over one of the muffin cups. Gently press down the middle and the sides to form a cup shape. If the dough cracks, just pinch it together and continue shaping it. Pinch the top edges to form a crust, like a mini tart.
Continue with this procedure until all of your balls are shaped into cups.
Bake for 20-25 minutes at 375F degrees.
While the shells are baking you can make the refried beans and guacamole.
The Best Homemade Refried Beans
I recommend cooking your own beans from scratch. I recently started using an Instant Pot to cook my beans and it changed my life! They are so creamy and delicious, just like my grandma used to make!
If you don't have an Instant Pot, you can cook the beans in a large pot with a tight lid on the stove. Just add 1-2 cups of dry, rinsed beans (you can soak them overnight, but this is optional) with double or more the amount of water and bring to a boil. Place the lid on and let them cook on low heat for about 2 hours. I like to add some cloves of garlic in too, but this is optional. To test them, blow on them and if the skin starts to peel back, you know they are ready.
You can also use 1 can of canned beans with the juice, or if you are feeling extra lazy, just use canned refried beans!
In a large skillet, heat the oil and add the finely minced garlic (I recommend this step even if you are using canned refried beans). When the garlic begins to soften, add the 2 cups or 1 can of beans with the juice.
As the beans are cooking, stir frequently, slightly mashing them as you stir. When the liquid has cooked down and they start looking creamy, add the juice from 1/2 a lime and a pinch of salt to taste. Stir and set aside.
Assembling the Sopes
When the masa shells are baked and slightly crispy, it is time to fill them.
Start with about 1 heaping Tbsp. of the refried beans, then your favorite vegan cheese shreds (I like Daiya Pepper Jack), a little bit of your favorite salsa or hot sauce, and a generous dollop of guacamole. You can get my guacamole recipe here. Top with a sprig of cilantro.
Your sopes are done and you are ready to party!