Frying taco shells at home is easy and home-fried taco shells are so good, you’ll never go back to taco shells out of a box! Making a batch of Spanish-style rice to go with your tacos is simple and delicious too!
Last night was taco night at our house. I am not exaggerating when I tell you that my kids thanked me no less than ten times for making them such a delicious meal.
I wish I could say that they are always so appreciative about things, but that’s not the case. We have our fair share of “just be thankful you’re not going hungry” moments. Just not on taco night.
I had the luxury of having the kitchen to myself last night while I prepared our tacos. My husband sequestered all the kids in one of the children’s rooms so that I could have a break from the noise. He read to them from our current family read aloud, and from the looks of the room afterwards, the kids played with every available toy and made a few outfit changes to boot.
Yesterday was one of those days where sending the kids to the back of the house for a while was absolutely necessary. I am an introvert by nature, and while I looooove being with people, too much of a good thing can really fry my brain. Learning the importance of giving myself pockets of quiet in my day has been so beneficial to maintaining my sanity and joy.
After thirty minutes of solitude, I was ready to welcome them back with open arms and enjoy a meal of some of our favorite foods!
A quiet kitchen also afforded me the chance to make a video to show you how to fry your own taco shells at home without a soundtrack of kids playing/laughing/yelling/chatting/whining. #soundtrackofmylife
Homemade taco shells are life-changing. They are right up there with other homemade foods where once you’ve had them, you can never go back. I will never buy another bottle of ranch dressing because the homemade version is so easy to make and the taste is incomparable. I feel the same way about our salsa, yogurt, bagels, marinara sauce, and more.
Believe me when I say that making your own taco shells is EASY! And, just as important, it is QUICK.
Only two ingredients are needed to fry taco shells– corn tortillas and oil. I like to buy non-GMO canola oil at Whole Foods. Three liters of oil is only $10, and I can use it for making fried zucchini or onion rings, homemade donuts on birthday mornings, making mayonnaise in my Vitamix, and so on.
Whenever you fry anything, the temperature of the oil is the most important factor. If your oil is too cool, the food will take too long to get crispy and will absorb too much oil, making it chewy or soggy. If the oil is too hot, it will burn or not cook through all way (not so important with taco shells). I use an inexpensive candy thermometer to check the temperature of the oil before I begin.
The equipment you need is simple– most likely things already found in your kitchen. A pair of metal tongs (so they don’t melt), and fork, and a small stainless steel pan. (I have used a pan like this for ten years and it is still in great condition!)
The method for frying taco shells may take a couple of tries before you perfect it and get the coordination right. I would suggest watching the video I made just so you can see how to use the fork and tongs together to make the best taco shape.
Last tip: After you fry your first shell, break off a small piece to check the crunchiness. If it is a little chewy, increase the heat of the oil slightly. The tacos should only take about 30 seconds total to fry.
Keep reading to see a recipe to make Spanish-style rice in your Instant Pot. It makes the PERFECT side for you tacos!
How to Fry Taco Shells at Home
- 6″ corn tortillas
- 2-3 C canola oil
1. Heat oil in an 8″ stainless skillet over medium-high heat until it reaches 375°.
2. Using a pair of metal tongs, hold the top of a corn tortilla and lower half of the tortilla into the oil. Fold it in half to form the taco shape. Gently press the half under the oil with a fork to keep the tortilla submerged, while holding the second half above the oil with the tongs. Fry the first half for 10 seconds to set the shape. Flip the taco over and fry the second half for 10-20 seconds until golden brown. Return the first half to the oil and fry for about 5 seconds longer if needed so that the taco shell is evenly browned.
3. Transfer hot taco shells to a wire rack set over a paper towel to cool. Maintain the oil’s heat at 375 and continue frying taco shells until you have the amount you need.
4. Let the oil cool completely and strain out the solids with a mesh strainer. Store oil in a jar to use another time.
Instant Pot Spanish-Style Rice
- 14.5oz can of diced tomatoes, blended
- 2 C brown rice
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp kosher salt
1. Blend the tomatoes until smooth. Transfer to a liquid measuring cup and add water until the liquid reaches 3 cups.
2. Combine the rice, oil, garlic, cumin and salt in the Instant Pot. Pour in tomato and water mixture and stir. Cook on high pressure for 22 minutes.
3. Let the pressure from the Instant Pot naturally release. When the pressure has released, remove the lid and toss the rice with a fork. Serve immediately and season with additional salt to taste.
Want more Instant Pot recipes??? You can find them here.
Not sure what an Instant Pot even is??? Watch this video and find out why you will love it.
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