I just gave Taco Tuesday a sweet treat makeover! Cinnamon-crisp tortillas are filled with an irresistibly smooth and creamy vanilla cheesecake mixture and topped with cherry pie filling. Just like me, you’ll want to eat these cherry cheesecake tacos every day of the week!
Tortillas for these cheesecake tacos are fried in hot oil until light and crisp, then brushed with melted butter and tossed in a delicious cinnamon sugar for an out of this world crunchy coating. It’s the kind of frying I never mind doing.
I love serving this taco dessert for a party, it’s so easy to scale up or down, based on need.
Why I Love These Dessert Tacos with Cherry Cheesecake Filling
- They’re whimsical and I love a fun dessert.
- Crispy, cinnamon-sugar tortillas are so good with fluffy, cheesecake filling.
- These tacos are another unique way to use cherry pie filling, much like my air fryer cherry hand pies and cherry pie milkshakes.
- Depending on the season, I can easily change up the pie filling to blueberry, peach or apple. They all work!
The ingredients for these cherry cheesecake tacos are easy to find, in fact you likely already have most of them in your kitchen.
For the Shells
- Taco Shells: Mini-street sized flour tortillas are what I use or you can use 5 regular sized taco tortillas for a larger dessert. You can even make
- Neutral Oil: You’re going to want to fry your shells in a high temperature, neutral tasting oil, think vegetable, avocado or peanut.
- Unsalted Butter: This is going to coat your fried tortillas so the cinnamon sugar can adhere.
- Granulated Sugar and Ground Cinnamon: This mixture is going to give your taco shells their sweet and sugary flavor.
For the Cherry Cheesecake Filling and Topping
- Cream Cheese: This is not the time to use low-fat cream cheese, full fat is what you want.
- Confectioners’ Sugar: Used to sweeten the cream cheese.
- Vanilla Extract: Adds depth of flavor.
- Heavy Whipping Cream: The base, along with the cream cheese, that make the base of the vanilla cheesecake filling.
- Cherry Pie Filling: The absolute star of the show! As I mentioned before, you can use blueberry, peach or apple pie filling.
How to Make Cherry Cheesecake Filled Dessert Tacos
- Step One: Use a fork to prick tortillas all over the surface.
- Step Two: Set a large, deep and heavy based pot over medium heat and add 3-inches of oil. When the oil reaches 325 degrees F, take a tortilla and fold it in half. Grasp the top of the tortilla with a pair of long-handed tongs and carefully submerge the tortilla into the heated oil; about 1 minute or until it is crisp and a pale golden brown.
- Step Three: After frying, allow the taco shell to cool either in a taco rack or by placing it between the grooves of an upturned muffin pan. The taco shell will maintain its shape as it cools.
- Step Four: Continue with steps 2 and 3 for the remaining tortillas. Monitor the oil temperature closely while frying; if it becomes too hot, turn off the heat source.
- Step Five: Once the taco shells have cooled sufficiently, use a pastry brush to apply melted butter to both the inside and outside of each taco shell.
- Step Six: Combine sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Dip the taco shells, both inside and out, into the cinnamon sugar mixture, shaking off any excess. Allow them to cool completely while you prepare the filling.
- Step Seven: In a large mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, and vanilla extract. Beat until well combined. Add heavy cream and beat until the mixture thickens and holds its shape.
- Step Eight: Using a piping bag fitted with an open star nozzle, transfer the cheesecake filling into the taco shells that have cooled.
- Step Nine: Add a spoonful of cherry pie filling to the top of each taco shell.
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- For frying you will need around 4-6 cups of neutral oil. Use a deep heavy-based pot and aim for around 3 inches of oil so that you can easily submerge the tortilla shells in the hot oil. If you don’t have a thermometer, you can gauge the temperature of the oil by adding a small piece of tortilla to the oil. If the oil sizzles and bubbles then it’s ready. Make sure your oil doesn’t get too hot during the frying process. If it does, turn the heat source off for a few minutes, then reheat as necessary.
- When heating oil in a pan, use the heat source furthest away from you at the back of your stove.
- It’s important to use a pair of long handled kitchen tongs. For obvious reasons you don’t want your hands to get too close to the hot oil.
- You can use the small street sized tortillas to make these cherry cheesecake tacos recipe, but it’s very easy to cut small circles from larger, soft flour tortillas.
- If you don’t want to fry the tortillas you can place them in the grooves of an upturned muffin pan and put them into a 400ºF oven for 10-12 minutes or until the tortillas are hard like taco shells and a pale golden brown.
- I used heavy whipping cream in this recipe because I prefer it to whipped topping; 1-1/2 cups of heavy cream will whip up to around 3 cups of whipped cream, which is equivalent to 8 ounces whipped topping (if you want to use whipped topping instead).
- If you don’t have piping nozzles you can use a piping bag and simply cut the end off with a pair of scissors (even a Ziploc bag will work). If you don’t have a piping bag you can spoon the filling right into the taco shells instead.
Storage and Reheating
Cheesecake Tacos are best eaten as soon as they’re made. They will keep well for a couple of hours, but since the shells have been brushed with butter, they will soften over time. As the cheesecake filling is made with dairy products, it needs to be refrigerated. Assembled cheesecake tacos will not hold up well in the fridge or freezer. However, you could make the cheesecake filling ahead of time (fill your piping bag) and refrigerate it until it’s needed.
More Cheesecake Recipes
If cheesecake is your thing, try this Cinnabon inspired cinnamon swirl cheesecake recipe, it tastes just like a cinnamon roll. Or, this Rolo cheesecake, nestled in an Oreo crust, might end up being your favorite. Tiny desserts are always popular and these mini espresso cheesecakes are always a welcomed treat.
Cherry Cheesecake Tacos
- taco rack or a muffin tin
For the shells:
- Use a fork to prick tortillas all over the surface.
- Set a large, deep and heavy based pot over medium heat and add 3-inches of oil. When the oil reaches 325 degrees F, take a tortilla and fold it in half. Grasp the top of the tortilla with a pair of long-handed tongs and carefully submerge the tortilla into the heated oil; about 1 minute or until it is crisp and a pale golden brown.
- Place the fried taco shell to cool in a taco rack or upturn a muffin pan and place the taco shell in-between the groves in the pan. (The taco shell will hold its shape once it’s cooled.)
- Repeat steps for the remaining tortillas. (Keep an eye on the temperature of the oil as you are frying, turn the heat source off if the oil is getting too hot.)
- When the taco shells are cool enough to handle, use a pastry brush to coat them inside and out with the melted butter.
- In a small bowl, add the sugar and cinnamon and mix well to combine. Dip the tacos shells, inside and out, in the cinnamon sugar, shaking off any excess. Set aside to completely cool while you make the filling.
- To make the filling: In a large mixing bowl, add the cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and vanilla extract. Beat thoroughly to combine then pour in the heavy cream and beat again until the mixture looks very thick and is holding its shape.
- Transfer the cheesecake filling to a piping bag fitted with an open star nozzle. Pipe the cheesecake filling inside the cooled taco shells. (you can also just fill the shells with a spoon, the piping bag just makes them prettier.)
- Add a spoonful of cherry pie filling to the top of each taco shell.
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