El Monterey Extra Crispy Southwest Chicken Taquitos Review

El Monterey Extra Crispy Southwest Chicken Taquitos

El Monterey is better known for their cheap food than they are for their tasty food, but every now and again they manage to impress us. Their Charbroiled Chicken & Monterey Jack Cheese Quesadillas, for example, are actually pretty good. So when we picked up a box of the Extra Crunchy Southwest Chicken Taquitos, we hoped they’d be among El Monterey’s better-tasting frozen foods.

Each box contains 21 taquitos neatly packed into a sealed bag. We doubt you’ll eat all 21 in one sitting — that’s quite a lot of food — so a box of these should be good for a few snack times.

El Monterey Extra Crispy Southwest Chicken Taquitos

There are two different ways you can heat these: in the oven or in the microwave. We decided to try them both.

First, the microwave is super quick. Just stick three taquitos on a plate and pop them in for a minute and 15 seconds. The oven takes a little longer. You’ll have to preheat to 400 degrees fahrenheit, then stick some taquitos on a cookie sheet and cook them for about 13 minutes.

No matter how you cook these, they will be greasy to the touch. You’ll want to have some napkins nearby while you’re enjoying these taquitos.

El Monterey Extra Crispy Southwest Chicken Taquitos

The real difference is that the microwaved taquitos have softer shells. We expected them to be a little soggy, but that wasn’t the case — these shells hold up quite well. The filling, however, tends to ooze out of the edges so you’re left with something that looks less than appealing.

Now, we should point out that in the oven, the filling does still ooze out, but it’s not quite as bad as the microwave version. Plus, that mess mainly stays on the pan; it doesn’t transfer over to the plate. So keep that in mind if you’re serving these to guests — the oven will get you a cleaner appearance.

The oven is also the only way you will get the extra crunchy texture that’s advertised on the box. Biting into one of these results in a satisfying crunch. So use the oven if you like a crisper shell or if you’re serving these to guests; use the microwave if you’re in a hurry and you don’t mind a softer shell.

El Monterey Extra Crispy Southwest Chicken Taquitos

We also thought the flavor of the filling stood out just a little more when we microwaved these. This filling is nothing more than a sour cream-based taco dip with some seasoning and veggies. It tastes pretty good, and we think it’s an excellent choice here.

Supposedly, there’s some chicken in these things, but the portion size is so small that it’s barely worth mentioning. For something with the word chicken in the title, these taquitos do not feel the need to be generous with the poultry portion. There are also a few veggies onboard, like black beans, red bell peppers, and corn. You’ll probably find more beans inside than chicken.

If you stick with the recommended serving size of three, these aren’t too bad for you, with just 240 calories (100 from fat). Of course, it’s very easy to end up eating two or three servings in a single sitting if you’re not careful, in which case the calories skyrocket. The sodium is a similar deal: 380 mg isn’t bad, but that’s only if you eat a single serving.

The El Monterey¬†Extra Crunchy Southwest Chicken Taquitos make a pretty good snack in a pinch. We wouldn’t call them amazing, but we certainly enjoyed getting to try them.

To learn more about the nutrition content or ingredients in these frozen taquitos, check out our package scan below.

El Monterey Extra Crispy Southwest Chicken Taquitos