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+ servings
platefull of crispy fried tacos.

The Best Fried Tacos

These really are the all time best fried tacos! The meat is fried right in the shell and then we fill the tacos with cheese and top with crunchy lettuce and our favorite hot sauce.
Course Main Course
Cuisine Mexican
Keyword classic recipes, kid-friendly recipes, weeknight dinner recipes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 20 tacos
Calories 190kcal


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 packet taco seasoning
  • 20 corn tortillas
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • Oil for frying
  • Taco toppings as desired


  • In a medium skillet, brown the beef crumbling it as it cooks.
  • Stir in the taco seasoning along with 2 tablespoons of water. Stir to coat the meat in the seasoning. Remove from heat.
  • Heat 2 inches of oil in a large, deep skillet over medium high heat to 375 degrees.
  • Place the tortillas on a microwave safe plate and top with a damp paper towel. Warm the tortillas in the microwave for about 30 seconds or until soft and pliable.
  • Use a dinner spoon to scoop a small amount of meat right down the center of one tortilla. Fold the tortilla in half and grab it with kitchen tongs.
  • Place the folded taco in the hot oil, continuing to hold it closed, and cook until the taco will hold it's own shape, about 20 seconds.
  • Let go of the taco and continue filling the pan with tacos, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. Fry tacos about 2 minutes per side, or until as crispy as you'd like. They will crisp up more as they cool.
  • When the taco is ready to come out of the oil, fold up a thick wad of paper towels in your hand. Pick the taco up with the tacos and gently tilt to allow grease to drain out, place in the wad of paper towels, and squeeze lightly to remove more grease. Make sure you have enough paper towels in your hand so that the grease does not soak through and burn your hand.
  • Place the taco in a paper towel lined pie plate and repeat with remaining tacos.
  • When the tacos have cooled enough to handle them, stuff each one with a bit of the shredded cheese.
  • Serve with your favorite taco toppings.



Use any taco filling you like, such as ground chicken or turkey, shredded chicken, or carnitas.
See blog posts for notes about filling and frying the tacos.
Use any of your favorite taco toppings - we keep these simple with shredded cheddar, shredded iceberg, and taco sauce or hot sauce.
To make these more like Jack in the Box tacos, use a slice of American cheese in place of the shredded cheddar. 


Serving: 4tacos | Calories: 190kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 22mg | Sodium: 203mg | Potassium: 115mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 221IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 66mg | Iron: 1mg