In partnership with Meater
Pulled chicken taquitos on the Traeger make for a great meal or party snack, and are pretty easy to make when you use your Traeger. In this recipe, we start with a whole Traeger roasted chicken which creates the perfect filling for these taquitos. Mastering a roasted chicken on the Traeger is a foundational skill of everyday Traegering, and using the Meater thermometer system while cooking the chicken makes it even easier and more precise.
Once you’ve got your Traegered chicken done, whipping up these taquitos is quick and the amazing creamy avocado sauce we served alongside them comes together in just a few minutes. To make this an even easier weeknight dinner on the Traeger, cook the chicken ahead of time (over the weekend or use leftovers from the night before). A whole chicken cooked on the Traeger is versatile and can be a great base for many meals.
TAQUITOS ON THE TRAEGER?
Yep! Taquitos on the Traeger. That’s right– we cooked every element of this dish on the Traeger (of course) and loved how the recipe came out. Not only was it fun to cook on the Traeger- like always- but the cleanup was a breeze because we had only used one thing to cook on. The Traeger Timberline XL was our grill of choice for this pulled chicken taquito recipe, and we used the grill to roast the chicken and the new induction burner to heat the pan for the shallow fry on these things.
MEATER MAKES IT PERFECT
With the integrated Meater thermometer system on the new Traeger lineup, it was super simple to use that technology to ensure that our chicken was perfectly cooked throughout. Just season up a whole chicken and put it in the Traeger at 350* and set the Meater thermometer to a target temperature of 160*, allowing for a little room for carry-over cooking. Chicken should always be cooked to 165* for food safety, and I knew that the heat of the grill would keep the meat cooking to the perfect temperature even when pulled at 160*.
Once the chicken was cooked and allowed to rest and cool enough to be pulled by hand, we fired up the induction burner on the Traeger Timberline XL with a cast iron pan and had the perfect way to shallow-fry the rolled tacos to crunchy perfection.
BUT WHATS INSIDE?
For these pulled chicken taquitos, we kept the ingredient list pretty simple. Perfectly cooked juicy pulled chicken, some seasoning (we used Spiceology taco seasoning), a blend of cheeses (monterey jack, cheddar, queso quesadilla and asadero) and a little bit of finely chopped green onion. These ingredients were rolled up in corn tortillas. We quickly heated the tortillas before filling them in a small frying pan with a bit of oil. I find that corn tortillas crack and break if you try to roll them without some heat and oil. Each tortilla received a few tablespoons of filling and got a tight roll. We used a toothpick or two per taquito to hold them in shape until we dropped them in the oil.
COOK TILL CRISPY
To fry them, we had a cast iron skillet with about an inch of vegetable oil heated to 350*. A few at a time, we dropped in the prepared pulled chicken taquitos and fried for about 2 minutes before turning them. Less than 5 minutes of frying resulted in amazing crispy taquitos with a melty and hot filling. Drain the taquitos on paper towels and serve hot with sauce for dipping.
WHAT KIND OF TORTILLAS?
For this recipe, we used corn tortillas. We find that corn tortillas generally come in one size– about taco/fajita size. These make for perfect taquitos because you can fry several at the same time and they make for a great fun dinner or party snack. Budget 3 or so per person– they’re like rolled tacos.
If you don’t want to use corn tortillas, you could do the same thing with flour tortillas, but they’d then be flautas. According to the internet, that’s the difference between taquitos and flautas– the type of tortilla. Flautas are often made with full-sized (burrito sized) tortillas, making them longer and with more layers of crispy on the outside.
You could even do a blend of the two types of tortillas– corn and flour– and serve a tray of taquitos and flautas with the same filling. Then, everyone can choose what they like!
SAUCE TO SERVE WITH PULLED CHICKEN TAQUITOS
Every delicious dish deserves a great sauce, and for serving these pulled chicken taquitos that we cooked on the Traeger, we made up a terrific and quick creamy avocado sauce for dipping. It all happens in a small blender and you can adjust the seasoning to your preference– spicy or not.
We combined equal parts sour cream and mayo, a splash of ½ and ½ (or buttermilk), an avocado, a handful of fresh cilantro, ½ a jalapeno, chopped, a dash of dijon mustard, a clove of garlic and salt, pepper and hot sauce to taste.
Blend the ingredients until the sauce is creamy and smooth. Transfer to a bowl and season to taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Whole chicken
- Binder (we used Traeger hot sauce)
- Seasoning (we used Traeger anything)
- Corn tortillas
- Cheese blend
- Green onions
- Oil for frying
- Sour cream
- Dijon mustard
- Salt & pepper
WHY COOKING TAQUITOS ON THE TRAEGER WORKS
When you build a recipe with a base ingredient like a perfectly-cooked Traegered chicken, you are off to a great start. To many Traeger fans, the achievement of a perfect Traeger chicken is the benchmark that you are well on your way to Traegering many nights a week. It’s quick, delicious and consistently perfect. And with the addition of the Meater wireless thermometer probe on the new Traeger grills, ensuring that the chicken is cooked thoroughly and still perfectly juicy, is super easy.
When cooked at 350* in the Traeger, a whole chicken (about 5 pounds) cooks to perfection in under 90 minutes. If you want to cook it more quickly, spatchcocking the bird will speed up the time and still ensure juicy delicious results. There’s a bunch of information about spatchcocking in my cookbook, which you can pick up here.
Because we had cooked the chicken on the Traeger, it seemed easy and logical to cook the taquitos on the Traeger too. Using the new induction burner that is included in the Traeger Timberline XL grill, we were able to get a perfect shallow-fry station outside that made cooking so easy. And cleanup was a breeze– no smell of fried food in the house!
- Begin by cooking the chicken.
- Preheat the Traeger grill to 350*.
- While the grill heats up, prepare the chicken. Remove it from the wrapper, pat dry with a paper towel and remove any gizzards or neck bones that may accompany the bird.
- On a cutting board or tray, season the whole chicken.
- Begin by applying a coating of hot sauce (or other type of binder you prefer– it could be oil, mustard, etc) all over the bird.
- Then season the bird all over with your seasoning of choice. We used Traeger’s new “anything” rub which has herbs and garlic as primary ingredients.
- Insert the Meater thermometer in the thickest part of the breast, ensuring it goes up to the line on the probe.
- Pair the Meater probe with the app and set it to chicken with a finish temperature of 165*.
- When the grill is hot, place the chicken in the center of the barrel and close the lid.
- Allow the chicken to cook in the Traeger until it hits 160* on the Meater. Chicken should cook to 165* for food safety, but pulling it from the grill will allow it to carry-over cook for the last 5 degrees, ensuring that it doesn’t overcook and dry out.
- Pull the chicken from the Traeger and allow it to rest, tented loosely with foil, until cool enough to handle.
- While the chicken cools, prepare the rest of your items for the taquitos.
- Make the creamy avocado sauce in a blender: combine the avocado, lime juice, cilantro, jalapenos, sour cream, ½ & ½, mayo, mustard, hot sauce and garlic. Blend until smooth. Add water by the tablespoonful to thin out the mixture if necessary. Season to taste, transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve.
- Chop the green onions, shred the cheese and prepare your frying station.
- For frying, you can use one pan for both steps. The first step requires just a small amount of oil to coat teh tortillas and heat through. The second step requires ½ to 1 inch of oil for shallow frying.
- When the chicken has cooled to the touch, use gloves to shred the chicken off the bones.
- In a bowl, combine about 2 cups of shredded chicken with some of the taco seasoning. Toss to coat.
- In the pan, heat each of the tortillas until hot and pliable. This should take less than 30 seconds per side– drain the tortillas on paper towels as you go.
- To create the taquitos, add a few tablespoons of seasoned chicken, cheese and green onions to the center of a par-fried tortilla. Roll tightly and secure with a toothpick.
- Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling ingredients.
- When the taquitos are assembled, add more oil to your pan and heat until it reaches about 350*.
- Frying in batches, cook the taquitos in the hot oil until browned on all sides (turning at least once) and crisp.
- Drain on a paper towel while repeating the frying step with the remaining rolled tortillas.
- Serve while hot with creamy avocado sauce.
SIMILAR RECIPES TO TAQUITOS ON THE TRAEGER
We cook up tacos at least once a week at our house. These taquitos are a different twist on our usual taco nights, and a delicious one at that.
Some of our other favorite taco recipes include:
- Cheesy birria-style tacos
- Salmon tacos with citrus slaw
- Reuben tacos
- There are also some great taco recipes in my cookbook!
Products used in this cook:
- For this recipe, we used the Meater thermometer system to ensure that we had a perfectly cooked chicken as the start of our dish.Some of the features I love about the Meater:
- Longer Range: Bluetooth to WiFi range extension built-in up to 165ft. Stand-Alone Mode: Cook without the use of your smart phone.
- Multiple Probes: Dual temperature sensors in each probe can monitor internal meat temperature up to 212°F and ambient / external temperature up to 527°F simultaneously.
- Guided Cook System: Walks you through every step of the cooking process to guarantee perfect and consistent results. You can also set up custom alerts / notifications based on temperature and/or time.
- Advanced Estimator Algorithm: Estimates how long to cook and rest your food to help plan your meal and manage your time.
- Traeger Timberline XL
- Lodge cast iron skillet
- Traeger anything rub
- Traeger hot sauce
- Spiceology Thttps://spiceology.com/products/taco-seasoning/aco Seasoning
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Pulled Chicken Taquitos on the Traeger
- Meater thermometer
- Traeger Timberline XL
- Cast iron skillet
- 1 whole chicken about 5 pounds
- ½ cup hot sauce
- ½ cup seasoning
- 10 corn tortillas
- 2 tbsp taco seasoning
- 1 ½ cups shredded cheese
- ¼ cup green onions chopped
- 3 cups vegetable oil for frying
- 1 avocado peeled and pitted
- ½ cup sour cream
- ½ cup mayo
- ¼ cup ½&½
- ½ cup cilantro leaves and stems
- ½ jalapeno chopped roughly
- 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 clove garlic smashed
- Salt & pepper and hot sauce to taste
- Preheat your Traeger to 350*
- Pat the chicken dry with paper towels, then coat with hot sauce. Season generously with rub on all sides and in the cavity
- Pair your Meater to the app and insert the probe in the thickest part of the chicken breast
- Place the seasoned bird in the grill and cook until it hits 160* internal
- Pull the chicken from the grill at 160* and allow to rest for 15 minutes or more, loosely tented
- Using gloves, pull the chicken meat from the bones
- In a bowl, combine 2 cups of shredded chicken with the taco seasoning nand toss to coat
- Par-cook the corn tortillas in a bit of oil in a hot pan until pliable and heated through
- Fill each tortilla with a heaping spoonful of chicken, cheese and green onions
- Roll tightly and secure with a toothpick
- Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling
- Make the creamy avocado sauce by combining all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth
- Add water by the teaspoonful to thin out the sauce to desired consistency
- Season with salt, pepper and hot sauce to taste and transfer to a bowl for serving
- In the same pan as before, add about an inch of oil
- Heat the pan until the oil reaches 350*
- In small batches, fry the prepared rolled taquitos in the hot oil, turning once, until golden brown and crisp
- Drain cooked taquitos on a paper towel lined plate and repeat with remaining taquitos
- Serve promptly with creamy avocado sauce