Delicious, crunchy flautas filled with shredded chicken (shredded beef works too), salsa, cheese, green chiles and more! They can be fried, air fried or even baked to be a delicious and easy dinner idea or appetizer.
Flautas vs Taquitos
What’s the difference? I had to admit that even I wasn’t 100% sure.
Come to find out, it means different things based on where you live. Usually, taquitos are rolled tacos (filled with meat, cheese and more) using corn tortillas. Flautas can be the same thing, but many use flour tortillas instead. We have always made flautas with corn tortillas but decided to try them with flour tortillas and we may never go back to using corn!
Today’s chicken flautas were SO delicious (we also tried some using shredded beef)! The filling, the crunchy, fluffy exterior of the fried tortilla – SO SO good! Will we continue to make them (or taquitos) with corn tortillas – you bet, BUT when we really want to wow people, we will definitely be busting out the flour tortillas.
How to Make Flautas
We love the filling we ended up making because it was simple and made with ingredients we already had on hand.
To make it, combine shredded chicken (or beef or even pork) with salsa, diced chiles, cheese, garlic salt and pepper.
From there, you will make sure you have vegetable oil heating up in a large pan on LOW-MEDIUM heat. You want it hot, but not so hot that it burns the tortillas the second it gets in the oil.
Fill the flour tortillas with the chicken filling along the middle of the tortilla and roll up, securing tightly with a toothpick.
Use tongs to add flautas to the oil and cook for a few minutes on each side (or until golden brown). Serve immediately with any of the toppings listed below.
MORE COOKING INSTRUCTIONS. I love the crispness that pan frying brings, but if you want to save some calories you can bake to air fry.
- BAKED: Place the rolled flautas, seamed side down, in a lightly greased 9×13 baking dish. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.
- AIRFRYER: Spray the airfryer basket with cooking spray. Place the flautas, seam side down, in the basket. Be sure they are not touching. Cook at 400°F for 6-7 minutes. Flip them halfway through.
Mexican flautas are a pretty easy recipe to make. Even so here are a couple tricks of the trade:
- Keep shredded chicken in the freezer to make this an easy, quick meal (just defrost overnight in the fridge or on the counter for a few hours before making).
- You can use either flour or corn tortillas. Just make sure they are fresh so they don’t tear.
- To keep corn tortillas from tearing while rolling, heat them up in the microwave for 20 seconds. Be sure to cover the tortillas with a damp paper towel before heating.
- When frying the flautas place the tortilla with the seam side down. This will hold them closed and keep the filling inside.
Storing, Toppings and Side Ideas
KEEP WARM. Turn the oven to LOW and place flautas on a paper towel-lined baking sheet and keep warm while making the rest of the flautas. You can REHEAT flautas by baking at 300 for 15-20 minutes.
Toppings: Flautas are delicious all on their own, but if you want to dress them up I suggest using:
- Avocado Cream Sauce
- Pico De Gallo
- Red Salsa
- Salsa Verde
- Cafe Rio Ranch Dressing
- Shredded Lettuce, tomatoes, cilantro, sour cream
What to serve with flautas? The options are endless, but here are a few ideas…
- Mexican Street Corn
- Cream Cheese Bean Dip
- Black Bean and Corn Salsa
- Homemade Spanish Rice
- Cilantro Lime Rice
For even more Mexican dishes, check out:
- Mexican Casserole
- Mexican Lasagna
- Green Chili Chicken Enchiladas
- Cafe Rio Shredded Chicken
- Chicken Chimichangas
- 3 c chicken shredded
- 1/2 c salsa
- 1 small can diced chilies
- 1 c Mexican Cheese shredded
- garlic salt
- 12 flour tortillas 5-6" rounds
- vegetable or canola oil for frying
- 2 c iceberg lettuce shredded
- Fill a large pot with enough oil to reach 2 inches up the side of the pan. Heat over medium heat until a deep-frying thermometer inserted in the oil reads 375 degrees F.
- In a medium bowl, combine the chicken, salsa, diced chiles, cheese, garlic salt and pepper.
- Working with 4 tortillas at a time, spread a heaping spoonful along the middle of each tortilla. Roll tortilla tightly around the filling and secure with a toothpick.
- Using tongs, hold each flauta in hot oil until firm, then release to continue cooking. Cook until golden brown, about 2 minutes, then remove to a paper towel-lined plate and immediately season with salt.
- Keep flautas warm in the oven on a sheet tray while assembling and cooking the remaining tortillas.