These crispy Puerto Rican tostones are made by smashing and frying green plantains – this recipe couldn’t be simpler to make or more delicious! Keep reading for my reader favorite tip on how to make the crunchiest tostones ever, by soaking them in water before the second fry.

A plate of tostones

Tostones are made with fried green plantains, a popular ingredient in many classic Puerto Rican recipes.

This traditional snack is easy to love for their salty addicting flavor and crispy, crunchy texture.

Eating these twice-fried green plantains is like enjoying gourmet potato chips fresh out of the fryer, except they’re way better.

They’re excellent with just about any dipping sauce, but in Puerto Rico they’re often served with homemade mayoketchup

If you’re a fan of plantains, be sure to check out this collection of plantain recipes, including platanos maduros (fried sweet plantains), baked yuca fries, alcapurrias, mofongo.

Grocery List

Here’s what you’ll need to make them:

  • green plantains
  • vegetable or canola oil
  • water
  • salt
  • lime
  • adobo seasoning (optional) 

See recipe card for exact quantities.

You’ll want to make sure to select firm green plantains when making tostones.

If you find yourself left with brown or deep yellow plantains, check out this recipe for platanos maduros (fried sweet plantains).

Step by Step Instructions

Prep the plantains and oil. Start by peeling your plantains and cutting into 1 inch sections. Preheat your oil in a heavy bottomed skillet over medium heat. 

New to working with green plantains? Check out my step by step instructions on how to peel a plantain.

Soaking your Tostones in Water 

The water soaking step in this recipe adds an extra crunch and crispiness to the plantains that I find totally addicting. Something about this trick helps the tostones to fry up nice and crisp during that second fry. 

That, combined with the added flavor in the water mixture just adds another layer of tastiness to this already delicious snack.  

Just be sure to follow the instructions and pat the plantains dry after soaking, to prevent the oil from splattering!

When visiting family in Puerto Rico, most of them twice fry their tostones and skip this whole water soaking step completely. 

And their fried green plantains are bomb; so if you want to skip this step for the sake of time, be my guest! Things will still be delicious, I promise.

But if you’re interested in a super crunchy, super flavorful end result, give my trick a try and let me know what you think.

A plate of tostones

More Plantain Recipes

If you’ve ever been to Puerto Rico, you know plantains are a staple in our cuisine. You’ll find them mashed, stuffed, cooked into soups and stews, and fried in just about every way.

Here are some more of my favorite plantain recipes:

Adding Your Own Spin

Interested in taking your tostones in your own direction? Here are some ideas:

  • Spices – as mentioned above, adding adobo seasoning (or any spices) is completely optional. Many Puerto Ricans will stick to salt and call it a day. If you’re feeling creative, add your favorite seasonings (try sazon) to the water and see how they create depth of flavor in your tostones.
  • Toppings – I’m a big fan of adding garnish to just about any dish, so when I’m feeling fancy and have it on hand I like adding some flaky salt and/or freshly chopped cilantro to these while they’re still hot.
  • Sauces – you don’t need a sauce to enjoy this snack, but it’s always encouraged. You can use a classic mayoketchup, pique, or mojo de ajo sauce or simply grab your favorite salsa or hot sauce.
two plates smushing a fried plantain

Tostoneras and Other Plantain Smashing Devices

You’ll notice that I use two small plates to smash my fried plantains. This technique works great if it’s all you’ve got!

If you feel like getting fancy, and want a designated tool to get the job done, I recommend buying a tostonera. These are designed specifically for smashing plantains, and make the process really easy!

That said, I make tostones at least once a month in my kitchen and I get along just fine with my 2 plate method. They’re easy to clean, easily accessible and don’t require any additional cabinet space to store. 

It’s up to you what you’d like to use!

A plate of tostones

What to Serve with Tostones

Wondering what to serve with your tostones? Start with these classic pairings:

Buen Provecho,

Salima written in cursive
Print
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A plate of tostones

Crispy Puerto Rican-Style Tostones

  • Author: Salima Benkhalti
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 34 servings 1x
  • Category: Snack, Appetizer, Side Dish
  • Method: Fried
  • Cuisine: Puerto Rican, Latin
  • Diet: Gluten Free

Description

These crispy Puerto Rican tostones are made by smashing and frying green plantains – this recipe couldn’t be simpler to make or more delicious!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 34 green plantains
  • 1 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 4 cups water
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 2 tsp adobo seasoning (optional)


Instructions

  1. Prep the plantains and oil. Start by peeling your plantains and cutting into 1 inch sections. Preheat your oil in a heavy bottomed skillet over medium heat. 
  2. Fry in batches until golden brown. Once the oil is hot, gently add in your plantain chunks, making sure not to crown the pan too much. Your pan should have enough oil to almost cover the slices, so add more if needed. Fry the slices for 8-10 minutes, making sure to flip them until golden brown all around. 
  3. Cool and gently smash the slices. Remove the slices and cool on a paper towel lined plate. Once the slices are cool, use a plate to smash the slices until they flatten just slightly. Make sure to not smash them too thin or they will break apart on the second fry. 
  4. (Optional) Soak the tostones. In a large bowl combine the water, lime juice, salt and adobo seasoning (optional). Gently add in the fried plantains and soak for 4-5 minutes before draining the water and patting dry with paper towels.
  5. Fry again until golden brown and crispy. Bring the oil back to high heat and add the smashed plantains back to the oil, frying for another 5 minutes or until crispy. Top with a sprinkle of salt and a squeeze of lime juice and enjoy! 

Keywords: Tostones, Fried Green Plantains, Puerto Rican Tostones