Authentic Molletes

This Mexican Mollete is probably the best open-faced sandwich you will ever eat, easy to put together, yet impressive in appearance, so versatile and incredibly delicious. Let me show you how easy it is to make.

One mollete topped with salsa with bites and placed on a white plate.

Mollete’s pronunciation is: moh-yeh-teh

Although it is a dish that exists in many Spanish-speaking countries, in Mexico, they are distinguished by using “bolillos”, a dense bread very common in all regions of the country.

They’re layered with refried beans and shredded cheese. Depending on the region in Mexico, other toppings are added such as chorizo, chilorio, eggs, etc. What gives the special touch is the salsa fresca (pico de gallo). This is by far, the most common salsa used on molletes.

The Ingredients you’ll need:

Beans, salsa, cheese and bolillos are staples in my house, so making molletes is a quick option for when we’re tired of traditional sandwiches or a boring breakfast. I hope you get to make them!

  • Bolillo – If you can’t find bolillos where you live, you can use any thick bread such as french bread or a baguette.
  • Butter – buttering and toasting the bread before assembling the sandwich elevates it above an everyday experience. Trust me on this one…don’t skip this step!
  • Beans refried beans are the best for this!!! There is no way around it. Cook a batch of my refried beans and keep them in the freezer ready to go for these quick recipes.
  • The cheese – I use Oaxaca cheese but you can use any other good melting cheese such as manchego, chihuahua, mozzarella, or monterey jack. They all have lots of flavor but are not super strong that will overpower the rest of the ingredients.
  • The salsa – the typical salsa used on molletes is salsa fresca (aka pico de gallo). However, you can use your favorite salsa … just make your pick!
A white oval plate with three bolillos, salsa, cheese and butter on the side.

How to make Molletes Mexicanos

  1. Start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees. The next steps go rather quickly!
  2. Heat a large skillet or comal over medium-high heat. 
  3. Spread butter over the cut side of the bolillo roll and place buttered side on hot skillet. Toast the bolillo for a couple of minutes or until it’s nice and brown.

4. Remove from skillet and place rolls on a baking sheet. 

5. Spread a layer of refried beans, then a layer of shredded cheese.

A baking tray with sliced bolillos topped with beans and shredded cheese.

6. Bake the bolillo rolls for about 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and it turns golden brown.

7. Remove from oven and top with salsa fresca. Serve warm.

Variations

Version #2 – Another classic variation is to add a layer of chorizo before you add the cheese then top with a salsa at the end. Or just follow your imagination to give your personal touch!

Version #3 – There is also a sweet version of Molletes that everyone loves! Molletes Dulces are a treat that you must have at least once. They’re made with cinnamon and sugar. Yum!

The sweet Molletes do not need to be baked. All you do after you brown them with butter is add cinnamon and sugar.

Three molletes on a white plate topped with salsa fresca.

What to serve with Molletes

These are the perfect pairings:

If you made and enjoyed this recipe I’d love it if you take 5 seconds to rate and review it below. It’s also super helpful to me and other readers if you share any changes you made to the recipe. I’m so grateful you’re here! 🙏🏼

Three molletes on a white plate topped with salsa fresca.

Authentic Molletes Recipe

Servings 4 people
Ana Frias
5 from 11 votes
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Molletes are a classic Mexican breakfast, although it can also work quite well for dinner, especially when you want to prepare something quickly. They're made with bolillos, refried beans, shredded cheese & salsa fresca. SO SO GOOD!

Equipment

  • Large skillet
  • Baking sheet
4 people

Ingredients
  

  • 2 bolillo rolls sliced in half long way see note below for other roll options
  • 1 Tablespoon salted butter at room temperature
  • ½ cup refried beans
  • 8 ounces Oaxaca cheese or any other melting cheese (see note below)
  • 1 cup salsa fresca

Instructions
 

  • Heat oven to 400 degrees.
  • Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Spread butter over the cut side of the bolillo roll and place buttered side on hot skillet.
  • Toast roll for a couple of minutes or until it's nice and brown.
  • Remove from skillet and place rolls on a baking sheet.
  • Spread a layer of refried beans, then a layer of shredded cheese.
  • Bake bolillo rolls for about 15 minutes or until cheese is melted and it turns golden brown.
  • Remove from over and top with salsa fresca. Serve warm.

*Ana’s Notes:

The bolillo – If you can’t find bolillos where you live, you can use any thick bread such as french bread or baguettes.
The cheese – I use Oaxaca cheese but you can use any other good melting cheese such as manchego, chihuahua, mozarella, or monterrey jack. They all have lots of flavor but are not super strong that will overpower the rest of the ingredients.
The salsa – the typical salsa used on molletes is salsa fresca (aka pico de gallo). However, you can use your favorite salsa … just make your pick!

ADD YOUR OWN PRIVATE NOTES

Whenever you come back to this recipe, you’ll be able to see your notes.

NUTRITION

Serving: 1half prepared molete | Sodium: 656mg | Calcium: 38mg | Vitamin C: 10mg | Vitamin A: 4IU | Sugar: 3g | Fiber: 3g | Potassium: 48mg | Cholesterol: 66mg | Calories: 355kcal | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 12g | Fat: 20g | Protein: 18g | Carbohydrates: 31g | Iron: 8mg

The nutritional information and US conversions are calculated automatically. I cannot guarantee the accuracy of this data. If this is important to you, please verify with your favourite nutrition calculator and/or unit conversion tool.

Three molletes on a white plate topped with salsa fresca.

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Recipe Rating




19 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Muy delish and so versatile! Tuna croquettes! You can top with mushroom cream sauce or mild salsa. Great Lenten…or any day…meal!

    Keep it coming, Ana! Love the Portugal pics! ❤️😘

  2. Muy delish and so versatile! You can top with mushroom cream sauce or mild salsa. Great Lenten…or any day…meal!

    Keep it coming, Ana! Love the Portugal pics! ❤️😘

  3. 5 stars
    I made these Molletes the other day with your salsa Fresca and they were a hit with the family!! i love the buttery flavor. Can’t wait to make them again!

  4. 5 stars
    We had these for lunch today and just love them. I couldn’t bolillos, so I had to a baguette but they were awesome!

  5. 5 stars
    This was my first time making “Molletes” and this was so delicious! I loved the fresh salsa on top and it was so easy to make. Will be making this again very soon!