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Crispy Chicken Flautas: A Flavorful Fiesta in Every Bite!

Dive into the world of authentic Mexican cuisine with our irresistible Chicken Flautas recipe. Crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside, it's a fiesta for your taste buds!

September 28, 2023
Chicken FlautasPhoto By Canva
Difficulty Easy
Servings 2 people
Preparation 15 mins
Cooking 20 mins
Total 35 mins



  1. Flautas Filling: In a large mixing bowl, combine the shredded chicken, Monterey Jack cheese, salsa, chopped cilantro, ground cumin, smoked paprika, salt, and pepper. Mix thoroughly until all ingredients are well-incorporated.
  2. Prep the Tortillas: In a skillet over medium heat, warm each tortilla for about 10 seconds on each side. This makes them more pliable for rolling. Place them on a plate covered with a towel to keep them warm.
  3. Roll and Secure: Lay each tortilla flat, spooning about 2 tablespoons of the chicken mixture onto the lower third of each tortilla. Roll the tortilla tightly around the filling, securing the end with a toothpick.
  4. Time to Fry: In a deep skillet or frying pan, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat until it reaches about 350°F (175°C). Carefully place 2-3 flautas into the hot oil, frying them until they're golden brown and crispy, which takes about 2-3 minutes on each side. Use tongs to remove them, placing them on a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil.
  5. Serve and Enjoy: Once all the flautas are fried and drained, serve them hot with sides of sour cream, guacamole, and extra salsa. Delight in the crispy exterior and the juicy, flavorful interior of your homemade Chicken Flautas!
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 1 Chicken Flautas
Serves 2
Amount Per Serving
% Daily Value*
Protein 12 g24%
Total Fat 14 g17.9%
Cholesterol 35 mg11.7%
Sodium 210 mg9.1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.


  • Tortilla Tip: Using fresh tortillas is key. If your tortillas break while rolling, they may be too cold or dry. Warming them briefly makes them more pliable.
  • Oil Temperature: Ensure the oil is at the right temperature before frying. Too hot, and the flautas will burn; too cool, and they'll become greasy. Use a thermometer if unsure.
  • Storage: Leftover flautas can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. They're best reheated in the oven to maintain crispiness.
  • Freezing: If you'd like to prepare flautas in advance, you can freeze the rolled but unfried flautas. When ready, fry them straight from the freezer, adding a minute or two to the frying time.
  • Variations: Feel free to add or substitute ingredients in the filling. Consider including black beans, corn, or even switch out the chicken for beef or pork.
  • Serving Suggestion: Serve flautas on a bed of lettuce with a sprinkle of crumbled queso fresco or feta for an enhanced flavor profile.
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Ah, flautas! These rolled tortillas, brimming with savory fillings and crisped to perfection, have been a cornerstone of Mexican cuisine for ages. Today, we bring you a chicken flautas recipe that's not just easy to whip up, but also packed with flavors that dance a merry jig on your palate. Let's embark on a culinary adventure that promises crunch, zest, and an unparalleled love for authentic Mexican treats.

The Origins of Chicken Flautas

Flautas, translating to "flutes" in Spanish, undoubtedly earn their name from their cylindrical shape, reminiscent of the musical instrument. Rooted deep in Mexican cuisine, flautas are a beloved street food, often sold by vendors in bustling marketplaces. As with many culinary traditions, various regions have their own spin on this dish, leading to delightful variations that cater to diverse palates.

Modern Takes on a Classic Recipe:

In the age of kitchen innovation, the traditional frying method of making flautas has seen some delicious modifications. One such method is using an air fryer. Air fryer chicken flautas are a healthier twist on the classic, offering the same crispy texture without the deep-frying. They're a testament to how traditional recipes can be adapted to modern-day health preferences without compromising on taste. Similarly, baked chicken flautas are another oven-crisped alternative, proving that indulgence can be guilt-free. These methods not only reduce the calorie count but also offer a less messy and more hands-off approach to cooking.

Celebrated Versions of Flautas:

Speaking of variations, some restaurants have managed to create a name for their unique versions of this dish. Among them, Chuy's chicken flautas stand out. With their perfect blend of spices, cheese, and tender chicken wrapped in a crunchy shell, they’ve garnered a fan base of their own. Such adaptations and endorsements by renowned establishments further cement flautas' reputation as a versatile and ever-evolving dish in the world of gastronomy.

From street-side vendors in Mexico to modern kitchens worldwide, chicken flautas continue to charm with their simplistic brilliance. Whether you're trying the air-fried, baked, or a famed restaurant version, the essence of this dish remains—crispy, flavorful, and thoroughly satisfying.

What Is A Chicken Flautas?

A chicken flauta is a traditional Mexican dish made by filling a tortilla with a chicken mixture, rolling it tightly into a cylindrical shape (resembling a flute, hence the name "flauta"), and then frying it until crispy. The result is a golden, crunchy exterior with a savory, juicy filling.

The primary ingredients for the filling typically include shredded chicken combined with various seasonings, cheeses, and sometimes vegetables or salsas. Once prepared, flautas are often served with condiments like guacamole, sour cream, salsa, or a combination thereof. They can also be garnished with lettuce, cheese, or other toppings.

It's worth noting that flautas are very similar to taquitos. The primary distinction between the two usually revolves around the type of tortilla used—flautas are traditionally made with flour tortillas, while taquitos are made with corn tortillas. However, regional differences and personal preferences often blur this distinction, and the terms might be used interchangeably in some places.

What Is The Difference Between Flautas And Taquitos?

Flautas and taquitos are both popular Mexican dishes that feature rolled tortillas filled with various ingredients and then fried to a crispy golden brown. While they are similar in preparation and appearance, there are a couple of key differences between the two:

Type of Tortilla Used:

  • Flautas: Traditionally made with flour tortillas. The flour tortilla's flexibility allows it to be rolled more easily without cracking, especially when filled with ingredients.
  • Taquitos: Typically made with corn tortillas. Corn tortillas have a distinct flavor and texture, adding a different dimension to the dish compared to flour tortillas.

Size and Shape:

  • Flautas: Given that flour tortillas are generally larger than corn tortillas, flautas tend to be longer and sometimes wider.
  • Taquitos: These are often shorter and more compact due to the smaller size of the corn tortilla.

Regional Variations and Naming:

  • In some regions or settings, the terms "flautas" and "taquitos" might be used interchangeably. This can cause some confusion, especially when ordering at a restaurant that doesn't strictly adhere to the traditional distinctions.
  • The name "flauta" translates to "flute" in Spanish, hinting at the dish's elongated, cylindrical shape.

Despite these differences, both flautas and taquitos are beloved for their crispy exterior and savory fillings, which can range from chicken, beef, or cheese to more elaborate mixtures. They're commonly served with sides or toppings like guacamole, salsa, sour cream, lettuce, and cheese. Whether you choose flautas or taquitos, you're in for a delightful treat that perfectly marries texture and flavor.

Why Are They Called Flautas?

The term "flauta" translates from Spanish to "flute" in English. The name is derived from the dish's appearance: a rolled tortilla filled with various ingredients, which, once prepared, resembles the elongated and cylindrical shape of a flute. Given the visual similarity between the musical instrument and the dish, the name "flauta" is quite fitting for these rolled and fried treats. It's a playful and descriptive way to highlight the dish's unique form in the vast landscape of Mexican cuisine.

What Countries Eat Flautas?

Flautas originate from Mexico, and this is where they are most popularly and traditionally consumed. However, due to the global spread of Mexican cuisine, flautas can now be found in many countries around the world. Here's a breakdown:

Mexico: As the birthplace of flautas, they are widely eaten across the country with regional variations in fillings and toppings.

United States: With a significant Mexican-American population and the widespread popularity of Mexican cuisine, flautas are commonly found in Mexican and Tex-Mex restaurants throughout the U.S.

Canada: Mexican restaurants in Canada often include flautas on their menus, and they are enjoyed by many Canadians.

Other Countries in Latin America: Neighboring countries, due to cultural and culinary exchange, might have variations of flautas or dishes that are similar in preparation.

Europe, Asia, and Oceania: In countries outside of the Americas, the presence of flautas is typically tied to Mexican or Tex-Mex restaurants. In major cities with diverse culinary scenes, like London, Paris, Sydney, or Tokyo, one can often find flautas in restaurants that serve international cuisines.

Middle East: In some Middle Eastern countries, dishes that resemble flautas, like "cigars" filled with meat or cheese, are traditional, though they are not directly related and have distinct flavors and ingredients.

It's essential to note that while flautas can be found in many countries, their authenticity and preparation might vary based on local tastes, available ingredients, and the interpretation of the chef or cook. As with many traditional dishes that get adopted by different cultures, adaptations and variations are expected.

What To Serve with Chicken Flautas?

Chicken flautas are delicious, crispy rolled tacos filled with seasoned chicken. Here are some tasty accompaniments to serve with chicken flautas:

Guacamole: Creamy, homemade guacamole is an excellent dip for chicken flautas. Its coolness and richness complement the crispy, savory flautas.

Mexican Rice: Serve chicken flautas with a side of traditional Mexican rice. The rice's mild flavors and fluffy texture make it a perfect complement.

Corn and Black Bean Salad: This refreshing salad combines corn, black beans, red onion, and cilantro with a zesty lime dressing, adding color and freshness to your plate.

Mexican Street Corn (Elote): If you want to add a unique twist, serve elote, which is grilled Mexican street corn, alongside your flautas. It's slathered in a creamy sauce and sprinkled with cheese and spices.

Pickled Jalapeños: If you like some extra heat, consider serving pickled jalapeños on the side. They provide a spicy kick.

Recipe byPetite Gourmets

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