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Make Your Own Taco Shells

Written by: | Published: May 05, 2015 | Updated: June 29, 2015

Do you make your own taco shells? I usually don’t. Actually, we’ve had an ongoing debate in our house about whether taco shells (store bought) are supposed to be cooked or not. My husband always says we should be toasting or baking the taco shells so they are crispy… my fabulous cooking skills tend to burn them. Every. Time!

So when my oldest came home from college for spring break he brought with him a few friends that showed me how to really cook my own taco shells. We did not make our own tortillas… that’s a lesson for another day. However, these pan fried shells are the yummiest thing since restaurant tacos! I will be cooking my own shells more often.

Pan fried corn tortilla taco shells
Pan fried corn tortilla taco shells

Pan Fried Corn Tortilla Taco Shells

I still need some practice, buthere’s the general idea to make your own pan fried corn tortilla taco shells.

You need:

  • Corn tortillas
  • Cooking oil
  • Large Skillet
  • Spatula
  • Tongs – optional but helpful

Note about the oil: I’ve used, olive oil, corn oil and vegetable oil, all work well. I’ve even used Coconut oil.. .my kids thought I was crazy.

Cooking your taco shells

Using corn tortillas, add a little oil to a large skillet and heat on medium. Once the oil is hot, place the tortilla in the pan. Cook for a few minutes, until a little browned. Then flip over the tortilla. When you flip it over, use the spatula to fold the shell. Cook each side of the shell until slightly browned or “golden. Make sure not to cook it too long or you won’t be able to open it to fill it.

Frying up some taco shells
Frying up some taco shells

I still burn them a little… it is tricky to get the shells just right. Not cooked enough and they are chewy. Cooked too much and they are more like big crackers. But once you get them cooked just right, they are so delicious! You don’t add anything to them.. just the oil and the tortillas.

Finished taco shells cooling on a paper towel
Finished taco shells cooling on a paper towel


Make your own pan fried taco shells
Make your own pan fried taco shells

This batch was filled with chili and cheese. We like to mix up the ingredients we put in our tacos… and the bean and beef chili was calling my name! I think combining these taco shells with the chili bar we had a few months ago would be AMAZING!


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Jen is Passionate about Creativity. She is the owner and "doodle in charge" of JGoode Designs, a Denver based design studio. She is an illustrator, mixed media artist and creative lifestyle blogger. Jen has been a creative professional since 1998 but says she's been an artist since she was old enough to eat glue.

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