Do you like savory snacks with a crisp, crackling crunch? Then you are going to love these vegan taquitos with jackfruit carnitas.
They can be made in the air fryer or oven. Perfect for dipping into guacamole, salsa, or cashew queso.
When vegan taquitos are on the menu, they are one of my favorite things to order at a Mexican restaurant. They feel wonderfully indulgent & special.
They are so satisfying to eat, because you get the crunch of the exterior. Then you bite through to the tasty deliciousness underneath.
They are usually fried. The outside is delightfully crispy, while the inside is filled with a savory filling. Plus, they are a great vehicle for dipping into guacamole or creamy vegan queso.
But taquitos aren’t for restaurants alone! They’re easy to make at home with very little mess by cooking in the oven or air fryer.
One of the best ways to make taquitos is by filling them with jackfruit carnitas and shredded non-dairy cheddar cheese. (It’s a terrific way to repurpose leftovers from jackfruit carnitas tacos!)
Jackfruit carnitas have the full-bodied, rounded flavors of ancho chili powder, cumin, red wine, and other spices.
For the cheese I like to use the Daiya cheddar-style farmhouse block, shredded by hand. (It’s better than buying the pre-shredded kind in bags.)
But you can use any vegan cheddar you like, or omit it altogether if you prefer.
What are taquitos?
Taquitos are rolled up corn tortillas that contain a filling. They are also called rolled tacos or tacos dorados.
Taquitos are typically fried. But I like to cook them in the air fryer or oven to get that crispy exterior. Plus, you don’t have to worry about the tortillas unraveling in a vat of hot oil, and spilling your filling.
How to make them
Warm corn tortillas in a skillet one by one for a couple of minutes on each side. Then move each tortilla to a plate or cutting board.
(If you’re really in a hurry, I give microwave instructions for heating the corn tortillas in this post.)
1. About a quarter of the way into the corn tortilla, make a line of jackfruit carnitas and shredded non-dairy cheese.
2. Pick up the end closest to the filling, and pull it over the jackfruit mixture. Give it a little tuck underneath. Keep rolling as tight as you can until your taquito is shaped like a cigar.
3. Once it is rolled, place the taquito seam side down, so that it doesn’t unravel.
To air fry: Put taquitos seam side down in the air fryer basket. Give the taquitos a spritz of oil spray. Air fry at 400 degrees for 9 minutes. Don’t flip them.
To bake: Put taquitos seam side down on a parchment paper covered baking sheet. Give the taquitos a spritz of oil spray. Bake them at 420 degrees for 15 minutes. Don’t flip them.
Make them your own
You can make these vegan taquitos your own by varying the ingredients.
- Instead of corn tortillas, use flour tortillas
- Instead of making your own jackfruit carnitas, buy pre-seasoned jackfruit (I especially like Herbivorous Butcher shredded chicken-style jackfruit!)
- Change up the filling completely by using sweet potatoes & black beans
- Omit the cheese if you prefer (It’s not necessary for holding the taquitos together)
How to store and reheat
Taquitos are a handy make-ahead meal, because it’s easy to store them in a freezer bag in the refrigerator or freezer.
Simply take a couple of cooked taquitos out of the bag whenever you need a meal in a hurry.
To reheat refrigerated taquitos, air fry at 400 degrees for 5 minutes.
To reheat frozen taquitos, air fry at 400 degrees for 7 to 8 minutes, stopping once to flip half-way through.
What to serve with them?
Serve the taquitos with any of the following for dipping or topping:
- Pineapple salsa
- Peach salsa with black beans
- Chili cheese dip
- Chipotle crema
- Cilantro chimichurri
Taquitos go well with any of these main courses or side dishes:
- Tortilla soup
- Refried black beans or refried pinto beans
- Fried plantains
- Black bean corn avocado salad
- Southwest salad
Vegan taquitos with jackfruit – in the air fryer or oven!
- If you plan on baking the taquitos, line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Pre-heat the oven to 420 degrees. If you are air frying, skip this step.
- Bring a non-stick skillet to a medium heat. Put one corn tortilla onto the skillet. Warm one side for a minute or so. Then flip the corn tortilla and warm that side as well.
- Once the corn tortilla is warm and pliable, move it to a plate. Put another corn tortilla onto the skillet.
- While the second tortilla warms, fill the first one. Put 2 Tablespoons of jackfruit carnitas in a single row across the tortilla. The row should be closer to one edge, off from center. Then put 2 teaspoons of shredded non-dairy cheese next to the jackfruit carnitas in a row.
- Grab the end of the tortilla, and fold it over the row of jackfruit carnitas & non-dairy cheese. Tuck it underneath the jackfruit, so that it's firmly holding onto it, like a hug. Then continue to roll the tortilla, until it's shaped like a cigar.
- If you're using an air fryer, put the taquito seam side down into the air fryer basket. If you're using the oven, put the taquito seam side down onto a parchment paper covered baking sheet.
- Continue heating the tortillas, filling, and rolling them until all of the taquitos are made.
- FOR THE AIR FRYER: You won't be able to fit all 14 taquitos into the air fryer basket at once. So you'll need to air fry in batches. Line the taquitos in an even layer in the air fryer basket next to each other, allowing some room for air flow. Don't stack taquitos on top of each other. They won't brown that way. Give the taquitos a quick spray of oil. Air fry the taquitos at 400 degrees for 9 minutes. I don't recommend flipping them, because they may not be fully sealed yet.
- FOR THE OVEN: If you're baking the taquitos, give them space between each taquito for proper browning. Give the taquitos a quick spray of oil. Bake the taquitos at 420 degrees for 15 minutes. I don't recommend flipping them, because they may not be fully sealed yet.
- You'll know the taquitos are ready when the edges are turning brown, and the center of each taquito feels firm to the touch. Carefully remove them from the oven or air fryer. They will be hot.
- Serve with guacamole, salsa, and/or vegan sour cream.