This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

Crispy chicken taquitos are the ultimate finger food with only 15 minutes of prep!

Taquitos stacked on top of each other and topped with lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and more.

A Family Favorite

We have Mexican food EVERY week! And being Hispanic, we did the same thing growing up. Now, we are just getting our own kids to love these recipe too, like today’s Taquitos recipe (which is a family fav). But, what are they?

Taquitos are a Mexican dish consisting of a small tortilla that is rolled around a filling of meat and cheese and then deep-fried (“small tacos”). They are similar to Flautas and are so incredibly yummy we know you’ll love them as well.

We love to serve these with: Homemade Salsa, Guacamole, Queso Blanco.

Why We love them!

  • For any meal. These chicken taquitos are so great as appetizers or as a Mexican dinner.
  • Simple + Quick. Not only are minimal ingredients needed, but they are also quick to make.
  • Change it up. The filling can be easily adapted to suit different tastes, from using different meats to adding various spices and toppings.

Ingredients

  • vegetable oil canola oil, peanut oil, or olive oil labeled for frying
  • 3 cups shredded cooked chicken shredded beef and pork are also great options. I like to have Shredded Chicken in the freezer to use in recipes like this one. You can also bake up some chicken to shred or use a rotisserie chicken.
  • 6 ounces cream cheese the creamy texture adds flavor and binds the chicken mixture
  • 1½ cups baby spinach – for added flavor, texture, and color
  • 1½ cups shredded colby jack cheese Mexican blend cheese is another great choice, or cheddar cheese, Monterey jack cheese, or pepper jack cheese also works.
  • ½ cup salsa Change the salsa to change the flavor – Sweet Salsa Verde or Tomatillo Salsa are both great!
  • ⅓ cup sour cream helps create a smooth filling as well as adds a tangy twist
  • salt and black pepper – change up the flavor using cumin, garlic powder, garlic pepper, taco seasoning, or chili powder
  • 12 (6-inch) corn tortillas classic taquitos use corn tortillas, but you can use a similarly sized Flour Tortillas
  • toppings (optional) shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, sour cream, Red Salsa, Salsa Verde, Cafe Rio Dressing, Pico de Gallo, jalapeños, Guacamole, or Queso Blanco

How to Make Taquitos

  1. PREP. Fill a saucepan with ½ inch of oil and heat over medium heat to 350°F.
  2. FILLING. Meanwhile, in a large bowl mix 3 cups chicken, 6 ounces  cream cheese, 1½ cups spinach, 1½ cups Colby Jack cheese, ½ cup salsa, and ⅓ cup sour cream. Add salt and pepper.
  3. FRY. 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 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 12 (6-inch) tortillas have been filled, rolled, and fried.
  4. SERVE. Serve warm with your favorite toppings.

Pro Tip!

To prevent cracked tortillas, wrap a stack of corn tortillas in damp paper towels and microwave for 15-30 seconds until warmed up. Many tortillas crack or break because they are not warm enough.

Alternative Cooking Methods

  • Oven baked. Check out our Baked Taquitos recipe.
  • Air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 400°F. Place the taquitos, seem side down, in the air fryer basket. Make sure they are not touching and spray with a light coating of cooking spray. Cook for about 3 minutes flip and cook for another 3-4 minutes or until lightly brown and crisp.
Taquitos stacked on top of each other and topped with lettuce, tomatoes, cheese and more.
Save This Recipe!
Just enter your email and get it sent to your inbox! Plus you’ll get new recipes from us every week!
5 from 925 votes

Taquitos Recipe

By: Lil’ Luna
Everyone loves these classic taquitos! They're fried to golden perfection and are great as appetizers or even a main dish.
Servings: 12
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Total: 25 minutes

Ingredients 

  • vegetable or canola oil, for frying
  • 3 cups shredded cooked chicken
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • cups baby spinach, stems removed and chopped
  • cups shredded Colby Jack cheese, or Mexican blend cheese
  • ½ cup salsa, store-bought or homemade
  • cup sour cream
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 12 (6-inch) corn tortillas (or flour tortillas)

Toppings

  • shredded lettuce, chopped tomatoes, sour cream, Pico de Gallo
Save This Recipe!
Just enter your email and get it sent to your inbox! Plus you’ll get new recipes from us every week!

Instructions 

  • Fill a saucepan with ½ inch of oil and heat over medium heat to 350°F.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl mix 3 cups chicken, 6 ounces cream cheese, 1½ cups spinach, 1½ cups Colby Jack cheese, ½ cup salsa, and ⅓ cup 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 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 12 (6-inch) tortillas have been filled, rolled, and fried.
  • Serve warm with your favorite toppings.

Video

Notes

Variations. Change it up by using shredded beef or pork. You can also use a different salsa to change the flavors.
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

Serving: 1g, Calories: 126kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 5g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 32mg, Sodium: 213mg, Potassium: 88mg, Fiber: 0.3g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 775IU, Vitamin C: 1mg, Calcium: 128mg, Iron: 0.2mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Appetizer, Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Making this recipe? Tag us!
Share it with us on Instagram using the hashtag #lilluna, so we can see what you’re creating in the kitchen!

RECIPE FAQ

  • 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 in place.
  • The oil should immediately begin to bubble when the taquitos are placed in and each side should take about 1 minute to fry. Place on a paper towel-lined plate to help drain the oil.
  • 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 filling can be made 1-2 days ahead of time and stored in a container in the fridge, or the freezer for 6-8 weeks.
  • 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 olive oil on the stove, or in the microwave.

For Mexican Dips and Salsas:

Recipe adapted from Cinnamon Spice and Everything Nice

About Kristyn

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

So Easy & So Yummy

Get my cookbook!

My new cookbook is the ultimate resource for feeding your friends and family with 200+ simple recipes including videos, tips & more!

5 from 925 votes (677 ratings without comment)

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




613 Comments

  1. Michelle Gagne Dube says:

    5 stars
    These are a hit when I make them. I don’t put the spinach on as I didn’t have any. Amazing dish!!!

    1. Lil'Luna Team says:

      I’m so glad they were a hit!

  2. Karen Russell says:

    5 stars
    These are so yummy and easy to make!! They are a big hit for gatherings but be sure to double the recipe 🙂

  3. Rebecca says:

    5 stars
    Made these tonight, and omg, so good! My picky eater even commented how good they were! Definitely will be in the menu rotation.

  4. Micki N Garcia says:

    Recipe made for dinner today!! This recipe is a definite keeper🙌🏼

  5. Gen says:

    I made this following the recipe exactly and used a salsa we like. They were very bland. Added corn and hot sauce to the second batch and they were still missing something. Edible but blah.

    1. Katherine says:

      5 stars
      I’ve made these before and added garlic powder, onion powder and chopped cilantro. They were delicious.

    2. Jen says:

      If I use cream cheese in a recipe I use the chive and onion cream cheese!

      1. Lil'Luna Team says:

        That sounds tasty!!

  6. Enlers says:

    5 stars
    Yummy

  7. Sheila says:

    These look awesome. Could a person bake them in the oven and not fry?

  8. Casey Carte says:

    Can these be frozen and heated later?

  9. Linda says:

    5 stars
    When I make taquitos I lightly fry the corn tortilla shells in oil first. I then put filling in them roll them and bake them. The oil on the tortilla shells keep them from cracking and bake nice and crispy.

    1. Barbara Huft says:

      Great idea! How long do you bake and at what temp?

  10. Lisa M. Boebinger says:

    I was just wondering if these can be fried in the air fryer instead of hot oil? I looked and i couldn’t find where it was addressed.

    1. Lil'Luna Team says:

      Yes, you can totally do these in the air fryer!!

      1. Patty says:

        Any idea what temperature, and for how long, to cook these in air fryer?

      2. Emily Lamphear says:

        I’d like to make these in my air fryer too! What would you suggest for temp and time?

      3. Lil'Luna Team says:

        I haven’t made them in the air fryer, but I’m thinking you could try them at 350 for 5 minutes on each side. Flip when they are golden brown and cook the other side for the same amount of time. You’ll have to let us know how they turn out if you try in the air fryer!