Jalapeno Popper Taquitos


MAKES 24-48 |  ACTIVE TIME 35 Min  |  TOTAL TIME 60 Minutes

3-6 jalapeƱos, diced (more for spicy, less for mild)
16 ounces lean ground beef (about 88%)
1 tablespoon New Mexico chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for sprinkling
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 cup bacon crumbles (1 pound cooked and diced)
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 cups shredded Colby Jack cheese
24-48 6" small flour tortilla or corn tortillas*
cooking spray

Heat oven to 425°F. Line 2 baking sheets with aluminum foil and lightly coat with cooking spray. Set aside.

In a large (10 inch) skillet over medium-high heat cook ground beef and jalapeƱos, until cooked through.  Break beef up with a spatula as it cooks. Add all seasonings and 1 cup water. Stir and cover with lid.  Cook 10 minutes, remove cover and continue to cook until water evaporates. Remove from heat. Add bacon. Stir to combine.

Meanwhile, place cream cheese in a large bowl. Set aside.

Add cooked beef mixture to cream cheese and stir until combined well. Add cheese and stir again until completely combined.

Lay out 4 tortillas at a time and add 1-2 tablespoons of mixture to the lower 1/3 of the tortilla. Roll the taquito tightly without tearing the tortilla.  Place taquitos seam side down on the baking sheet.  Repeat until the baking sheet is full, being careful not to allow the taquitos to touch.  If the taquitos are unrolling or tearing, see cook's note for tips.

Spray taquitos with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt.  Bake 15-20 minutes until the tortillas are crisp or the ends begin to brown.

Serve and enjoy!

COOK'S NOTE:  Filling tortillas with 1 tablespoon of mixture will make approximately 48 taquitos.  This works best with the corn tortillas, adding more causes the tortillas to separate.  Flour tortillas perfectly hold 2 tablespoons of mixture.

Using fresh tortillas will give the best results, if you are having trouble rolling them, microwave a few at a time, for about 20 seconds, with a wet paper towel over top. This will help make them more pliable.

If taquitos are unrolling, add a dab of jalapeno popper mixture to the inside end of the taquito and gently press down to seal. 

To freeze for later use:  Prepare taquitos as described, but do not bake.  Place baking pan into freezer.  Allow taquitos to freeze solid.  Once frozen place into a resealable freezer bag (1 gallon works great)and store until ready to use. 

They keep well for 6 months.  To prepare frozen taquitos, preheat oven to 425°F and bake frozen taquitos for 20 minutes or until tortillas are crisp or ends are beginning to brown.  Serve and enjoy!
Recipe developed by Donna Elick - The Slow Roasted Italian
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