Delightfully crispy, and packed with flavor, I find flautas impossible to resist. My husband will tell you I order them at restaurants at almost every opportunity I get. As much as I love flautas, the nutritional information is hard to stomach. Deep fried and greasy, these tasty and crispy tacos contain an inordinate amount of fat. I was so excited to find this healthy alternative. These chicken and spinach flautas are still perfectly crispy, but they are baked instead of fried. We were skeptical about the spinach filling, but it is delicious.
These flautas are great for dinner, but can also be served as an appetizer or snack. Enjoy these flavorful flautas without the grease of deep fried versions. Trust me, you’ll fall in love.
- 2 chicken breasts
- Taco seasoning (to taste)
- One large onion, diced
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced (more or less, to taste)
- 9 oz fresh spinach
- 1 cup shredded cheese (we usually use cheddar)
- 5-6 large tortillas (we use flour, corn tortillas can also be used)
- Olive oil
- The first step is to cook the chicken. I prefer to bake chicken because it is so darn easy and produces deliciously moist chicken every time! You can also use a rotisserie chicken if you are short on time. To bake chicken, preheat the oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Drizzle a small amount of olive oil in a baking dish and lay chicken on top. Top with another thin drizzle of olive oil. Bake for 10 minutes, then flip and cook an additional 8-10 minutes, or until chicken is cooked all the way through. Allow chicken to rest 5 minutes before slicing.
- Once chicken has cooled, dice into small cubes and saute in taco seasoning until well coated. I used about 2 tablespoons of seasoning.
- While chicken is cooked, sauté onion and garlic in a teaspoon of olive oil.
- When onions are translucent, add spinach one handful at a time. Spinach will wilt as it is cooked, so continue to add spinach until all spinach is cooked. If desired, you may also add diced jalapeno to the spinach mixture. I'm a total baby about spicy food and always skip this step.
- The next step is to fill the tortillas. There are two different methods which I switch between depending on the occasion. The first is to use the entire tortilla, producing large flautas. The other method is to cut the tortilla in half, resulting in a smaller flauta. When I make these smaller flautas, I roll them up to make short and stout flautas, rolling along the cut edge. We've tried rolling them the long way (starting at the cut end), but we found the flautas were too thin without enough filling, plus the edges burn easily. I usually make larger flautas, but the smaller ones are easier to eat as finger food (perfect for watching the World Series this week! Both sizes are shown at the bottom of this post). Choose a method and spoon portions of chicken and spinach into the middle of the tortilla. Top with cheese and roll.
- Place the flautas seam-side down in a greased pan.
- Fill and roll remaining tortillas, placing side-by-side in the greased pan. My pan fits a dozen little flautas. Brush or spray flautas with a thin layer of olive oil.
- Bake at 450 for 10 minutes, then flip flautas with tongs and bake for an additional 10 minutes, or until crispy.
- Serve with salsa, refried beans or guacamole. Enjoy!
Inspired by Healthy. Delicious.