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Air Fryer Taquitos

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Chicken-and-cheese air fryer taquitos are crispy, crunchy and easy to make. If you love deep-fried chicken taquitos, you’ll love this healthier spin on the traditional recipe. Without pan frying there’s less mess in the kitchen.

PIN AIR FRYER TAQUITOS

Air fryer taquitos garnished with shredded lettuce, avocado, tomatoes, Mexican cotija cheese, and lime.

Today I had time to experiment. I tested this taquito recipe with 2 different cooking methods: air frying and oven baking. I discovered that air frying shaved off several minutes of cooking time compared to baking. And during hot-weather months, heating up the oven less often is a really good thing.

There are so many occasions to enjoy festive Mexican rolled tacos. Serve them as appetizers on Game Day. When planning a party add them to your Cinco de Mayo menu. They’re also a quick healthy meal for busy families.

Tightly pack freshly-cooked chicken-and-cheese taquitos in a double layer of foil to keep them warm. Hand this on-the-go meal to your family as they’re rushing out the door to attend after-school activities.

Three crispy rolled tacos garnished with lettuce, avocado, tomatoes, and jalapeños.

HOW TO MEAL PREP AIR FRYER TAQUITOS

Shred the chicken and cheese in advance. Put them in airtight containers and refrigerate. For prepping shredded lettuce, make sure the produce is dry, not wet, when you slice it. Put it into a zip-top bag with all the air pressed out. This will help keep it nice and crisp. If you’ll be making your own taco seasoning, you can prep that in advance as well.

KITCHEN SMARTS: With an air fryer at home and this easy recipe you’ll never want or need to buy frozen taquitos again. Just assemble the rolled tacos, air fry, cool, and freeze. Reheat taquitos from frozen in the air fryer.

Air fryer chicken taquitos served in a bowl and garnished with fresh produce.

INGREDIENTS

  • Cooked Chicken: I use rotisserie chicken for this easy recipe. I remove the skin and bones and hand shred the meat. I prefer using chicken breast for taquitos, but you can use just dark meat or a white/dark mix.
  • Chicken Broth: Adding a bit of chicken broth or chicken stock will rehydrate the shredded chicken to keep it slightly juicy rather than dry, especially when the taquitos are cooking in the air fryer. In a pinch, instead of broth you can use water moisten the chicken.
  • Shredded Cheese: For yummy chicken and cheese taquitos, I use a Mexican blend of shredded cheese. But you can use cheddar cheese, Monterey jack, or pepper jack. Buy a package of pre-shredded cheese or shred your own. For dairy-free taquitos, simply omit the cheese.
  • Taco Seasoning: I like to use my homemade taco seasoning blend, but you can use a store-bought envelope of taco seasoning.
  • Fire-Roasted Diced Green Chilies: OPTIONAL, but super tasty. At the supermarket look for a small 4-ounce can of fire-roasted diced green chilies. I prefer the Ortega brand, but any brand will do. Be sure to drain the chilies well before adding them to the meat mixture.
  • Corn Tortillas: Select a package of medium-sized corn tortillas to make sure they’ll fit inside the air fryer basket. If you’d like to use the smaller “street taco” size, that’s fine too. You can also make your own homemade corn tortillas with just 2 simple ingredients plus water.
  • Cooking Spray: When air frying food, I prefer using Pam (canola oil) cooking spray. It makes things easy. But if you don’t have a can on hand, use bottled canola oil or vegetable oil and a pastry brush. A light coating of oil helps taquitos in the air fryer get golden brown, and helps give them a similar taste and texture to pan fried-chicken taquitos.
  • Flaky Salt: Although optional, adding a sprinkling of flaky salt to freshly-cooked rolled tacos adds beautiful texture with a pop of flavor.
  • Toppings: Here’s where you can customize these delicious air fryer taquitos. Pick and choose your favorites: shredded lettuce, cherry tomatoes (halved), guacamole or sliced/cubed avocado, Mexican cotija cheese (a crumbly feta-like cheese), sour cream or Mexican crema, flaky sea salt, jalapeños (fresh or pickled), salsa verde, and wedges of lime.
Ingredients for making taquitos in air fryer.

RECIPE STEPS

RECIPE PREP: Preheat air fryer to 400°F. Wrap corn tortillas in a damp, lint-free kitchen towel. Microwave for 30 seconds until soft and pliable. Keep them wrapped. Set them aside.

  • STEP 1: Add shredded chicken, shredded cheese, diced green chilies (optional), and taco seasoning to a large bowl. Toss and stir to combine. If the chicken mixture is too dry, add a bit of chicken broth one tablespoon at a time until the chicken mixture is just lightly moistened. 
  • STEP 2: Unwrap the warm corn tortillas. Working with one tortilla at a time, spray both sides with cooking spray (or brush lightly with oil). Place the tortilla on your work surface. Arrange 3 tablespoons of the chicken-cheese mixture down the center of the tortilla.
  • STEP 3: Roll the tortilla tightly, enclosing the filling. Repeat the filling and rolling process with remaining tortillas and meat mixture.
  • STEP 4: Arrange the rolled tacos in a single layer, seam side down, inside the air fryer basket. Make sure the basket is not overcrowded. Lightly spray the top of the taquitos with cooking spray.

RECIPE TIP: If the rolled tacos start to unroll before cooking, secure them with wooden toothpicks. Arrange taquitos in air fryer with toothpicks in place. Remove the toothpicks before serving.

How to assemble rolled tacos and put taquitos in air fryer.

STEP 5: Air fry at 400°F for 10 to 12 minutes or until rolled tacos are golden and crisp. Transfer taquitos to a plate and immediately sprinkle with flaky salt. Garnish with your favorite toppings and enjoy.

Cooked chicken taquitos in air fryer basket.

RECIPE FAQ

These are the most commonly-asked questions when making air fryer chicken taquitos, and the most helpful answers for recipe success.

ARE TAQUITOS AND FLAUTAS THE SAME THING?

No, but they are very similar. Taquitos are assembled with corn tortillas while flautas are made with flour tortillas.

ARE TAQUITOS GLUTEN FREE?

Yes, because taquitos are made with corn tortillas and corn is a gluten-free food. But always check the ingredient label on the package. Some corn tortillas might be produced in a facility that also processes wheat.

HOW TO KEEP TAQUITOS CRISPY?

To keep rolled tacos crispy, preheat oven to 200°F. Place a wire rack over a baking tray. Arrange the taquitos in a single layer on the rack. Store them in the oven (up to 30 minutes max) until serving time.

WHAT DIPPING SAUCE FOR ROLLED TACOS?

My favorites include salsa verde, sour cream or Mexican crema, guacamole, tamale gravy, or creamy cilantro lime dressing.

WHAT TO SERVE WITH CHICKEN AND CHEESE TAQUITOS?

For a plated entree, serve with beans, rice and a crisp green salad. It’s how rolled tacos are traditionally served at Mexican restaurants.

HOW TO FREEZE AIR FRYER TAQUITOS?

Let cooked taquitos cool completely. Arrange them in an airtight container with parchment paper between the layers. Freeze up to 1 month. Air fry from frozen at 375°F for 5 minutes or until hot.

MORE AIR FRYER RECIPES

If you enjoyed these air fryer taquitos, then you’ll also want to try these quick delicious air fryer recipes. Print out your favorites and add them to your recipe collection, or pin them to Pinterest.

Air fryer taquitos with chicken and cheese filling garnished with fresh produce.

RATE THIS RECIPE ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Discerning taste testers gave these chicken-and-cheese taquitos two thumbs up. They loved that these rolled tacos were golden and crisp, similar to those fried in hot oil. They rated this healthy air fryer recipe a “winner!”

If you agree making taquitos in an air fryer is easy and delicious, give this Mexican recipe a 5-star rating in the comments.

Gold Line: Sprinkles of Inspiration | confettiandbliss.com
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Air fryer chicken taquitos served in a bowl and garnished with fresh produce.

Air Fryer Taquitos


Description

Crispy air fryer taquitos are a healthier version of traditional chicken taquitos deep fried in oil. Serve these crunchy rolled tacos with lettuce, tomatoes and other tasty toppings.


Ingredients

Units Scale

CHICKEN AIR FRYER TAQUITOS

  • 2 1/2 cups cooked shredded chicken (I use a rotisserie chicken)
  • 1 cup shredded cheese (Mexican cheese blend)
  • 1 4ounce can Ortega fire-roasted diced green chiles (OPTIONAL), well drained
  • 1 to 3 tablespoons chicken broth (or water), as needed
  • 1 envelope taco seasoning mix (or 2 1/2 tablespoons homemade taco seasoning)
  • 12 medium-sized corn tortillas
  • Cooking oil spray (like Pam original canola oil blend)
  • Flaky salt, for sprinkling

OPTIONAL TOPPINGS

  • Shredded lettuce
  • Diced tomatoes
  • Sour cream
  • Guacamole
  • Pico de gallo
  • Sliced jalapeños
  • Mexican cotija cheese (a crumbly cheese similar to Feta)
  • Salsa verde
  • Hot sauce

 


Instructions

RECIPE PREP: Preheat air fryer to 400°F. Wrap corn tortillas in a damp, lint-free kitchen towel. Microwave for 30 seconds or until soft and pliable. Keep them wrapped. Set them aside.

  1. Add shredded chicken, shredded cheese, diced green chilies (optional), and taco seasoning to a large bowl. Toss and stir to combine. If the chicken mixture is too dry, add a bit of chicken broth one tablespoon at a time until the chicken mixture is just lightly moistened. 
  2. Unwrap the warm corn tortillas. Working with one tortilla at a time, spray both sides with cooking spray (or brush with oil). Place the tortilla on your work surface. Arrange 3 tablespoons of the chicken-cheese mixture down the center of the tortilla.
  3. Roll the tortilla tightly, enclosing the filling. If the taquitos start to unroll, secure them with wooden toothpicks (it’s fine to air fry with wooden toothpicks in place, just remember to remove them before serving). Repeat the filling and rolling process with remaining tortillas and meat mixture. 
  4. Arrange the rolled tacos in a single layer, seam side down, inside the air fryer basket. Make sure the basket is not overcrowded. Lightly spray the top of the taquitos with cooking spray.
  5. Air fry at 400°F for 10 to 12 minutes or until rolled tacos are golden and crisp. Transfer taquitos to a plate and immediately sprinkle with flaky salt. Garnish with your favorite toppings.

Notes

HOW TO KEEP TAQUITOS CRISPY: Preheat oven to 200°F. Place a wire rack over a baking tray. Arrange the taquitos in a single layer on the rack. Store them in the oven (up to 30 minutes max) until serving time.

HOW TO FREEZE AIR FRYER TAQUITOS: Let cooked taquitos cool completely. Arrange them in an airtight container with parchment paper between the layers. Freeze up to 1 month. Air fry from frozen at 375°F for 5 minutes or until hot.

  • Prep Time: 10 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 Minutes
  • Category: Appetizers, Dinner
  • Method: Air Fryer
  • Cuisine: Mexican

Keywords: Air Fryer Taquitos, Chicken and Cheese Taquitos, Air Fryer Chicken Taquitos, Taquitos in Air Fryer

Gold Line: Sprinkles of Inspiration | confettiandbliss.com

AIR FRYER TAQUITOS > JOIN THE CONVERSATION

Are you ready to part ways with store-bought frozen taquitos? What do you love most about these crunchy rolled tacos? The savory chicken-and-cheese filling or their crispy exteriors? Share your thoughts in the comments!

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