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Everyone loves these classic taquitos! They’re fried to golden perfection and are great as appetizers or even a main dish.
We have Mexican food EVERY week!
Without fail, we are having Tacos, Red Cheese Enchiladas, Cheese Quesadillas, or taquitos one day during the week and the kids love them. I’m so grateful for that because I love these recipes too, and they’re usually really easy to make.
Today, I wanted to share our favorite taquitos recipe that are filled with cream cheese and chicken.
What are TAQUITOS? Taquitos are a Mexican dish consisting of a small tortilla that is rolled around a filling of meat and cheese and then deep-fried.
They are very similar to the Flautas we make all the time, but they have cream cheese, salsa, and baby spinach mixed in with it too. Tacos are usually folded, and these taquitos are rolled.
Since my husband LOVES cream cheese, I knew he’d love this recipe and to no surprise, everyone else does too. It’s easy and so delicious.
How to Make Taquitos
These chicken taquitos are so great as appetizers or as a main dish. And we love that are quick to make. Here is how we make them:
OIL. Begin by heating ½ inch oil on medium heat in a frying pan.
MIX. While the oil is heating up, mix together cooked shredded chicken, cream cheese, sour cream, salsa, co-jack cheese, and spinach. Add salt and pepper to taste.
ROLL + FRY. Once the oil is hot enough, add a few tablespoons of the chicken/cream cheese mixture along the center of the corn tortilla and spread out. Roll up and set seam side down (using tongs) into the oil.
DRAIN OIL. Cook these until golden brown on both sides and continue doing this until the mixture is gone. Set on a paper towel-lined plate to drain the oil and serve warm.
SERVE WITH SOME OF THESE FAVORITES:
You don’t want your taquitos recipe falling apart so be sure to use these tips!
Cracked tortillas. Wrap a stack of corn tortillas in some damp paper towels and microwave for 15-30 seconds until warmed up.
The reason why many tortillas crack or break is because they are not warm enough.
Keep tortillas rolled. Add your mix, roll, and then use metal tongs to hold the taquitos in the oil with the seam-side down until they stay rolled. You can also add toothpicks to the center of each taquito before frying to keep them in place.
Flour tortillas. The kind of tortilla (corn tortillas or flour tortillas) is what most believe is the difference between a taquito and a flauta. No matter what you use, both make these delicious!
Soggy taquitos. The main reason that homemade taquitos turn out soggy is because the oil temperature is too low. The oil should immediately begin to bubble when the taquitos are placed in and each side should take about 1 minute to fry to crispy perfection.
- If the oil pops and sizzles vigorously and browns within seconds the oil is too hot.
- If the oil doesn’t bubble and takes several minutes to fry, then the oil is too cold.
There are so many ways to change up this chicken taquitos recipe. Here are a few examples:
- Meat. Shredded beef and pork are also great options.
- Spices. Cumin, garlic powder, garlic pepper, chili powder – these can all change up the flavor.
- Cheese. I like Colby Jack or a Mexican blend, but cheddar cheese, Monterey jack cheese, or pepper jack cheese also works.
- Salsa. Change up the salsa to change the flavor – Sweet Salsa Verde or Tomatillo Salsa are great!
- Toppings. Shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, sour cream, jalapeños, Guacamole, or Pico de Gallo.
To make baked homemade chicken taquitos be sure to check out our Oven Baked Chicken Taquitos.
Make ahead of time. While I don’t recommend fully frying these chicken and cheese taquitos up ahead of time, you can prepare the ingredients beforehand so that all you have to do is roll and fry.
The cream cheese chicken mixture can be made 1-2 days ahead of time and stored in a container in the fridge, or stored in the freezer for 6-8 weeks.
STORE. Leftover cream cheese taquitos can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
Reheat on a baking sheet in the oven, in a warm skillet with a bit of olive oil on the stove, or in the microwave.
FREEZE. The cream cheese and chicken mix freezes well. Place in freezer-safe Ziploc bags and get as much air out. The day I’m ready to make them, I just pull them from the freezer and let them thaw completely, which is perfect for those crazy busy days.
The options are endless, but here are some of our favorite Mexican recipes to serve alongside chicken cream cheese taquitos:
- Homemade Spanish Rice Recipe
- Canned Refried Beans
- Cilantro Lime Rice
- Red Cheese Enchiladas
- Homemade Tortilla Chips
You’ll want to choose an oil with a high smoking point such as vegetable oil, canola oil, or peanut oil. I have even seen olive oil labeled as suitable for frying. Some people also like to use lard.
Absolutely! When you add a filling to a corn tortilla and fry it is called a taquito. When you add the same filling to a flour tortilla and fry it is called a flauta. Both are delicious.
Add your mix, roll, and then use metal tongs to hold the taquitos in the oil with the seam-side down until they stay rolled. You can also add toothpicks to the center of each taquito before frying to keep them in place.
For More Taquitos and Flautas, Try:
- Avocado Taquitos
- Spinach and Artichoke Taquitos
- Buffalo Chicken Taquitos
- Baked Taquitos
- Chicken Flautas
- vegetable or canola oil, for frying
- 3 cups shredded cooked chicken
- 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1½ cups baby spinach, stems removed and chopped
- 1½ cups shredded Colby Jack cheese, or Mexican blend cheese
- ½ cup salsa, store-bought or homemade
- ⅓ cup sour cream
- salt and pepper to taste
- 12 (6-inch) corn tortillas (or flour tortillas)
- shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, sour cream, Pico de Gallo
- Fill a saucepan with ½ inch of oil and heat over medium heat to 350°F.
- Meanwhile, in a large bowl mix together chicken, cream cheese, spinach, Colby Jack cheese, salsa, and sour cream. Add salt and pepper.
- Once oil is hot enough, add a few tablespoons of chicken–cream cheese mixture to the center of a tortilla and spread out. Roll the tortilla up and use tongs to place it seam-side down in hot oil. Cook until golden brown on both sides, 2–3 minutes per side. Set on paper towels to drain.
- Repeat until all tortillas have been filled, rolled, and fried.
- Serve warm with your favorite toppings.
Make ahead of time. You can mix the filling as described in Step 2 up to 24 hours in advance. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Cracked corn tortillas. If your corn tortillas are cracking when you roll them, wrap a stack of corn tortillas in some damp paper towels and microwave for 15–30 seconds until warmed up. The reason many tortillas crack or break is because they are not warm enough.
Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.
Recipe adapted from Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice