There is something about Mexican food that I have always loved, but as I have grown older (and a little wiser) about what goes in to the food that is going in to my body I have been a little more hesitant to hit the local Mexican restaurants. A good solution for this is simply cooking my favorite Mexican inspired foods at home, but like with most foods, it’s hard to find a healthier alternative that tastes as delicious as their unhealthy counterparts. These chicken taquitos defiantly fit the description of lightened up, crispy, and delicious. Even better they are fairly simple to make, and they are great to make in advance and freeze before cooking later for a last minute meal. I’m not a big fan of corn tortillas, so I tried mine with white and multi-grain wheat flour tortillas and I couldn’t really notice a difference in taste or texture with the wheat, except the wheat obviously has the added health benifit (score!). These call for chicken, but this recipe would be great to play with and make different versions of veggie, beef, pork, or whatever your favorite taquito concoction is. However you choose to make them, I am sure you will love them, I know they will become a staple in our house! Enjoy!

Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos

Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos (Print Me)

Yield: 10-12 taquitos

3 ounces cream cheese, softened (I used reduced-fat)
1/4 cup red or green salsa
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice (half a lime)
1 tsp salt (more or less to taste)
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp onion powder
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbsp chopped cilantro
2 Tbsp sliced green onions
2 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 cup shredded Mexican mixed cheese

Small white/wheat flour or corn tortillas
Cooking spray

Preheat your oven to 425˚F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, mix the cream cheese, salsa, lime juice, salt, ground cumin, chili powder, onion powder and garlic. Once combined, stir in the cilantro and green onions. Add the chicken and cheese; mix thoroughly. (If you decided to prep this in advance, refrigerate the mixture at this point until ready to continue.)

Working with a few tortillas at a time, heat them in the microwave between two damp paper towels until they are soft enough to roll (about 20 – 30 seconds). Spoon 2-3 tablespoons of the chicken mixture onto the lower third of a tortilla (I made mine on the thicker side). Roll the tortilla as tightly as you can and place them with the rolled side down on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining tortillas until the mixture is gone, leaving enough space between the taquitos so they are not touching (**if freezing to cook later stop here). Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray then bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until crisp and golden.

Serve with salsa, sour cream and guacamole (or your favorite toppings!)

**If you want to freeze the taquitos: Once all the taquitos are rolled chill them on a baking sheet in the fridge. Once completely cooled, wrap each taquito individually with plastic wrap then place in a freezer bag and freeze.

To bake a frozen taquito (no need to thaw first): Preheat oven to 425˚F and bake for 20 minutes.

Source: Our Best Bites

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