Can I Reheat Tacos? Tips on Which Method Is Best

Okay. Seriously. Who doesn’t love tacos?

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There are so many jokes, memes, GIFs, and very serious negotiations about tacos. Why? Because everyone loves tacos.

But here’s the thing: most people only think of fresh tacos, straight from the grill, the comal, or whatever restaurant gave them to us.

What on earth can you possibly do with leftover tacos? Can you reheat tacos? And if so, how?

Can You Reheat Tacos?

Can You Reheat Tacos

Yes. You can reheat tacos.

Obviously, you can reheat any food that has been refrigerated or frozen. For example, foods that have been breaded or fried are often best reheated in an air fryer or in the oven and foods that have been baked or grilled are usually best reheated back in the oven or back on the grill.

The real question is can you reheat tacos to their original state so they are as delicious as, or more delicious than, the first time you had them.

Here’s the thing about tacos: you can absolutely reheat tacos to their original state, but your best bet, every time, is going to be reheating the meat inside the tacos and discarding the shell.

Whether you are dealing with a hard, crispy shell, like Taco Bell delivers, or a soft shell in which tacos were originally designed to be served, you will have no luck trying to reheat a taco that has been put away cold in an already heated tortilla.

Instead, if you have taco leftovers, your best bet is to separate out all the ingredients as best you can and refrigerate those, discarding the taco shells entirely.

Then, when you are ready to reheat the tacos, simply heat up new taco shells, either soft tortillas or crunchy shells.

You can buy the crunchy taco shells in pretty much any market and reheat them in the oven for a few seconds, as outlined in the instructions on the box.

To heat soft tortillas, corn or flour, you can either heat up a comal, which is just a large, round, flat cooking surface placed on the stove, or use any flat skillet. Then warm the tortillas for a few seconds on each side until nice and pliable.

The trick is to heat the meat to perfection.

For taco meat, our best appliance is probably going to be a skillet on the stove, but let’s work through every appliance just to be sure.

Should You Reheat Tacos?

Should You Reheat Tacos

Before we get into heating the taco meat, let’s cover safety.

You, of course, want to know if it is even safe to reheat taco meat once it has been refrigerated or frozen.

Yes. In most cases, you are perfectly fine reheating taco meat without having to worry about toxins or contaminants. Food safety practices are critical to avoid food poisoning, and we don’t want you getting food poisoning.

In general, the guidelines say to heat any leftover foods to an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit. When you heat food to sizzling heat for a few minutes, you can be pretty sure you have reached that goal.

Still, you should always do your own research on reheating leftovers to cover all your bases. To get you started on that research, check out this article on reheating leftovers by Healthline

How to Reheat Tacos in the Oven

Reheating taco meat in the oven is not the most efficient way to get this job done, but it can still turn out a good dish.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Place your taco meat into a shallow, oven-safe dish, add a few tablespoons of broth, and cover it with aluminum foil to trap in heat and steam.
  3. Heat the meat in the dish for 10-15 minutes and check to be sure the meat is sizzling.
  4. Serve in fresh tortillas with your other taco ingredients and enjoy!

How to Reheat Tacos in the Microwave

Reheating tacos in the microwave is fast and easy, but you run the risk of drying the meat out, so take care not to overcook it.

  1. Place your meat in a microwave-safe dish and pour a couple of tablespoons of broth or tomato sauce over the top.
  2. Cover the dish with a damp paper towel or lid and heat on full power for 30 seconds.
  3. Stir the meat and heat for another 30 seconds.
  4. Continue this process until the meat is heated through.
  5. Serve with fresh tortillas and your favorite ingredients and enjoy!

How to Reheat Tacos in an Air Fryer

Reheating tacos in an air fryer is tricky. You can only really get this done with larger pieces of meat like steak or grilled chicken. Any kind of juicy, saucy meat will be virtually impossible to heat in an air fryer because it will dry up the sauce and the meat will run through the basket.

  1. Place your individual pieces of meat in the air fryer basket, spaced out.
  2. Heat them in the air fryer at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for a couple of minutes.
  3. Serve with fresh tortillas and your favorite toppings and enjoy!

How to Reheat Tacos on a Grill

For any taco meat, the trick to reheating it on the grill is to wrap it in aluminum foil.

  1. Preheat the grill to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Place the foil packet on the grill over indirect heat and close the lid.
  3. Heat for 15 minutes and check to be sure your meat is heated through.
  4. Serve with fresh tortillas and your favorite toppings and enjoy!

How to Reheat Tacos in a Toaster Oven

The toaster oven isn’t the appliance you most often think of to reheat tacos, but you can make it work.

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Place the taco meat on a greased baking sheet and heat the meat in the toaster oven for 5-10 minutes and check on your meat.
  3. If necessary, you can heat for another few minutes.
  4. Serve with tortillas and your favorite toppings and enjoy!

How to Reheat Tacos in a Pan on the Stove

The stovetop is a quick and easy way to reheat your tacos.

  1. Heat a cast iron skillet on the stove over medium heat.
  2. Add some oil to the bottom of the pan and once it is warmed up, add the meat to the pan.
  3. Toss the meat around for a few minutes until it is heated through.
  4. Serve with fresh tortillas and your favorite ingredients and enjoy!

Winner! – The Best Way to Reheat Tacos Is Using the Stove

Yes! With tacos, it definitely has to be the stovetop.

It is quick, efficient, and it will lock the moisture into the meat perfectly.

What do you think? Do you have a favorite way to reheat tacos? Tell me about it in the comments. I love to hear from my readers.

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