Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Chicken Taquitos

I tried a new recipe for dinner tonight, and there was much rejoicing in the house! But I'd better start from the beginning. Almost a week ago, my cousin invited me to try Pinterest (which until that point I had resisted on the theory that I had plenty of other ways to waste my time online already). I still haven't used it a ton, but I did pin some recipes that looked tasty and not too tricky. Today's recipe comes from there: chicken taquitos.

I ended up being able to fit about 8 on a cookie sheet.

They turned out delightfully crispy!

I've coped the recipe (with my notes added in) below.

Baked Creamy Chicken Taquitos

Yield: 12 taquitos (I only assembled 8 so far but it looks like it will make more like 16-20)

- 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1/4 cup green salsa (I used store bought mild green salsa since I'm a wimp with spicy stuff)
- 1 Tbsp fresh lime juice (juice from half a lime) (I actually used a whole lime, but it wasn't a very juicy one.)
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 2 cloves garlic, minced (I used about 1/4 tsp garlic power)
- 3 Tbsp chopped cilantro (I skipped this ingredient because I forgot to buy some) (UPDATE: I made this again and it's even better with cilantro)
- 2 Tbsp sliced green onions (I used about 2 tsp dried onion)
- 2 cups shredded cooked chicken
- 1 cup shredded Mexican flavored cheese
- small flour or corn tortillas (I used 8 inch flour tortillas)
- kosher salt
- cooking spray

Preheat your oven to 425˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a large bowl, mix the cream cheese, salsa, lime juice, 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 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. Roll the tortilla as tightly as you can.
Place the rolled tortilla seam side down on the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining tortillas until the mixture is gone.  Make sure the taquitos are not touching each other. Spray the tops lightly with cooking spray and sprinkle with kosher salt.
Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until crisp and golden.
Serve with salsa, sour cream or guacamole.
**To freeze:  Before baking, flash freeze the taquitos in a single layer on a baking sheet then place in a labeled freezer bag and store up to 3 months.  To bake a frozen taquito (no need to thaw first): Preheat oven to 425˚F and bake for 20 minutes.  (Flash Freeze means freezing the taquitos in a single layer for 15-20 minutes (until hardened) so that when you add them to the freezer bag, they will not all stick together).


I made my filling goop in advance, and my tortillas were room temperature so I didn't need to microwave them at all. They turned out very tasty, despite some of the filling oozing out each end. I served them with sour cream. The sprinkling of salt on top is definitely important - there's no salt added to the goop, so that sprinkling really adds a lot to enhance the flavor overall. Despite my initial nervousness at the recipe containing salsa and chili powder, it was not at all spicy, just very flavorful. 

I'm definitely going to try out the flash freeze method because these are really easy to make ahead of time, and also a really easy dinner if they're waiting in the freezer. And we all know how much I like easy, quick dinners. :) Seriously though, if you make the goop ahead of time, it only takes maybe 10 minutes to assemble these. My oven hadn't even finished preheating before I was done.

We each ate three and were stuffed, so this recipe will easily feed at least 4 people, maybe more (depending on the people). 

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