If you're in the mood for a delicious and crispy Mexican appetizer, look no further than these chicken flautas! Rolled tortillas are filled with tender, shredded chicken, savory spices, and melted cheese, then deep-fried until golden and crispy.
The result is a mouthwatering combination of textures and flavors that will leave you and your guests wanting more. With this recipe, you can easily whip up a batch of chicken flautas in no time and impress your family and friends with your culinary skills.
I am happy to share that I partnered with Dairy Council of Florida to bring you this delicious recipe!
Chicken flautas have turned into a new family favorite recipe!
They're incredibly easy to make and so fun to eat.
I enjoy serving them as either a filling and nutritious after-school snack OR as an appetizer when I'm expecting both kids and adults at the house.
Their tube-like shape make dipping fun for any age so I like to get crazy and set out allllll the condiments!
PLUS, the fact that they're packed with protein and calcium makes it a win-win for me AND my kids.
What Are Flautas?
Flautas means "flutes" in Spanish which is really the perfect term to describe them. Some people refer to them as "rolled tacos" but I feel like they are much different!
Traditionally, they are stuffed with chicken, cheese and spices and rolled up to resemble a flute and deep fried! Their shape makes them PERFECT for dipping into salsa, guacamole, sour cream or pico de gallo!
🛒 Flautas Ingredient tips
- cream cheese - This will give your chicken flautas a creamy rich interior.
- salsa - Use any store-bought brand from mild to spicy. This will add a tasty Mexican-inspired flavor.
- sour cream - This will add a tangy bite and keep your chicken flautas moist!
- Monterey jack cheese - I prefer this cheese over cheddar but use what you like best. You can also use a taco cheese blend.
- taco seasoning - They sell this in packets in the international aisle in any food store or you can make your own seasoning.
- scallion - Also known as scallions, this adds a freshness!
- shredded chicken - Shred your own chicken at home or purchase a rotisserie chicken and shred it quickly!
📃 NOTE: You can print the FULL recipe with all ingredients & detailed instructions below!
🧑🍳 How To Make Chicken Flautas
It is super easy rolling your chicken flautas. I recommend having your kids help you out! The trick is not to stuff them too much or they will be more like a clarinet than a flute. (A corny flautas joke...) Get it..:)
You want just a spoonful of filling inside each flour or corn tortilla.
spread to the edges and roll tightly! The filling will help the tortilla stick to itself so toothpicks are not needed.
Corn Tortillas vs. Flour Tortillas
Traditionally, the CORN tortilla is the winner when it comes to flautas!
When it comes to flavor, flour tortillas have a more neutral, slightly sweet flavor while corn tortillas offer more of a robust toasted corn flavor.
The texture is also noticeably different. Flour tortillas are softer and much more pliable than corn tortillas.
If you're serving gluten free guests, opting for corn tortillas is the way to go.
Note* I've found that my guests typically prefer the taste and texture of FLOUR tortillas plus, they're a bit easier to roll! (Corn tortillas tend to tear when rolling although steaming them helps!) Choose what works for you.
To get super crispy flautas, I highly recommend frying them as opposed to baking because the crunch factor is off the charts.
When it comes to frying, you have TWO ways to fry your flautas.
- Shallow fry
- Deep fry
Shallow frying is always my go-to method especially when frying something that is not too thick and is already cooked internally.
To do this, add 1-2" of oil to a skillet and fry away. You will need to flip your chicken flautas halfway through to ensure both sides are golden brown.
Deep frying often is a quicker cooking method and in this case, will brown your chicken flautas on all sides better than shallow frying. You will need at least 3" of oil in a sauce pan to do this.
Because your flautas are small and already cooked inside, I do not like to waste oil so shallow frying it is.
If you are looking to save on calories, air frying to baking them is your next best option!
If you'd like to save calories OR make a larger batch of chicken flautas for a party, BAKING them is the way to go!
The process is the same as filling and rolling but in this case, cooking spray will be your best friend. Spray your baking sheet and the tortillas themselves liberally to maintain their crunchy exterior.
Bake your fluatas for 10-15 minutes at 400-425 degrees F until golden brown.
There are many different ways to make chicken flautas. I prefer chicken since it's cheap and easier to shred but you can use any protein, cheese or even add veggies! Here are some ideas:
- Swap the cheese for pepper jack, mozzarella, gruyere, colby, cheddar or swiss.
- Use ground beef, carne asada, shrimp or shredded pork.
- Add chili powder or cayenne pepper for a spicy kick!
- Incorporate spinach or any lettuce, peppers, or tomatoes if you like.
- Caramelized onions are always a good idea.
- Sprinkle some queso fresco on top for an added cheeses addition!
- Hot sauce is a popular condiment that goes very well with chicken flautas!
Dipping & Topping Options
Here are popular condiments and sauces to serve with your chicken flautas:
- Guacamole (a must!)
- Sour cream (also a must!!)
- Pico De Gallo
- Hot Sauce
- Mexican Crema
- Cotija cheese (for sprinkling)
- Lots of thinly shredded lettuce
- Salsa Verde
- Sliced avocado
How Do I Prevent My Corn Tortillas From Cracking?
Dampen a paper towel or two and wrap them around your corn tortillas. Reheat them in the microwave for 10-20 seconds to soften them up a bit.
How Do I Hold My Flautas Together When Frying?
Use a wooden toothpick to hold them closed until they're finished frying. Then remove and serve!
How Do I Store and Reheat Flautas?
Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 4 days. Reheat in the oven at 350 until just warmed through and melty. Freeze for up to 8 weeks in a freezer bag.
What To Serve With Flautas:
Other Mexican Inspired Posts:
Margaritas To Serve With Your Chicken Flautas:
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- Jalapeño Margarita5 Minutes
- Avocado Margarita w/ Jalapeno & Cilantro5 Minutes
- Large Batch Margarita Pitchers Recipe (For 14 People!)10 Minutes
Delicious Chicken Flautas Recipe
- 8-10 small flour tortillas* (4-6”)
- 1 cup cooked shredded chicken (I used a store bought rotisserie)
- 3 oz cream cheese (softened)
- 3 tablespoon store bought salsa
- 2 tablespoon sour cream
- ½ cup shredded Monterey jack cheese
- ¾ teaspoon taco seasoning
- 1 scallion (finely chopped)
- garnish with freshly chopped cilantro and fresh lime wedges
- guacamole, sour cream, pico de gallo
- *If Baking: Pre-heat oven to 425°F. Line a large baking sheet with nonstick spray or parchment paper. Set aside. (If frying, we will heat our oil a bit later.)
- In a large bowl, cream together all ingredients except for the chicken. A hand mixer will make this much easier!
- Gently mix in the shredded chicken last.
- Add a spoonful of the mixture onto the center of each tortilla and spread a THIN layer all the way to the edges. Adding too much will make your flautas too thick.
- Tightly roll each tortilla and set aside. Flautas should not be thick like a taco. Aim for a diameter the size of a nickel/quarter. (Secure tortillas in place using toothpicks if needed.)
- If baking, transfer flautas seam-side down onto your baking sheet and spray each with cooking spray or brush lightly with oil. (This will help them brown and crisp up nicely.)Bake for 15-20 minutes or until they are golden brown.
- If frying: heat ½ inch of oil in a large cast iron skillet or heavy-bottom pot over medium heat until the oil reaches 375°F.
- Fry 3-4 flautas at a time, turning occasionally, until golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes. Let drain on paper towels or wire racks. Repeat with remaining flautas. Adding too many to the pan will drop the oil temperature and result in greasy flautas.
- Flautas can be kept warm in the oven set to 200°F.
- Serve hot with sour cream, guacamole, lime wedges and/or pico de gallo!