Easy air fryer tacos are super cute because they are tiny tacos! Made with canned refried beans, shredded cheese, and small street taco-size flour tortillas, they make up nice and crispy in the air fryer. Load on your favorite toppings and enjoy the quick and easy tasty taco treat.
Perfect for your Taco Tuesday – or any day! Air Fried Tiny Tacos would be a tasty after school snack the kids can help make. They can do all of the prep – just make sure an adult handles the hot air fryer!
These bean and cheese air fryer tacos are easy to make if you eat a plant-based, vegan diet with your favorite vegan cheese and refried beans. They are best with a squeeze of lime, salsa, pico de gallo, guacamole, pickled onions, and jalapenos. Read below for more topping suggestions.
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Ingredients and substitutions for mini tacos in the air fryer
The basic recipe for air fryer tacos can be as simple as refried beans and shredded cheese. Of course, I’ve added a little extra flavor by adding taco seasonings. Read more to learn the best ingredients and substitutions to use and how I make these tiny tacos vegan friendly.
- 4″ street taco-sized flour tortillas – I have tried this recipe with soft corn tortillas and honestly was not a fan of the finished product. They were too crispy and challenging to bite into. If you can’t find the small 4-inch size flour tortillas then make them using two or three regular soft taco-size tortillas and cutting them into smaller triangles after air frying. I’ve had luck finding the street taco size – both flour and corn tortillas up front in the produce section near the prepared deli guacamole.
- refried beans – You will only be using one-half cup total for six mini tacos. I use Amy’s Refried beans which are “vegetarian” but reading the ingredients, I bellieve they actually vegan. (They are made on sharred equipment so there might be a chance of cross-contamination.) If you are eating vegan, then check the label of the brand you use for lard and dairy. Many brands are vegan without saying they are vegan.
- diced green chilis – these are the little diced green chilis that come in a can. They are typically mild in flavor (unless they indicate “hot” on the label), but lend a nice flavor depth to the refried beans. Some refried beans contain chilis. If that is the case with yours then there is no need to add more.
- vegan shredded cheese – Make sure you find a brand of vegan cheese that you actually like the flavor of and that it melts. I know that vegan cheese can be a little iffy. For this recipe I used Violife. If you are not vegan, then use the cheese you’d like.
- seasonings – You will use just a small amount of each: chili powder, salt, cumin, and garlic powder. Or you can sub in a like amount of taco seasoning if that is easier
- avocado oil – A little oil is necessary for crispy air fryer tacos. Avocado oil does well in the air fryer. You can sub in another vegetable oil, but make sure it has a high burn point.
- And of course, you will need an air fryer for this recipe. I use the Instant Vortex Plus 6qt 6-in-1 Air Fryer and I love it! It has a large capacity and fits the six mini tacos perfectly. If your air fryer is smaller then you might need to cook them in batches.
Toppings to turn your mini tacos into a taco night party!
Your favorite taco toppings are perfect for tiny tacos! Think about what you like to use when you eat tacos. Chances are you will enjoy the same toppings as you do with traditional tacos on your mini tacos too. These are the toppings that I use and love. (And yes, all these recipes are vegan from Veggie Fun Kitchen!)
- pico de gallo
- avocado slices
- a squeeze of fresh lime
- table-side guacamole
- creamy avocado sauce
- jalapeno ranch dressing
- coconut lime crema
- pickled pink onions
- chopped red onion
- jalapeno slices – I use pickled mild jalapenos
How to make your own tiny taco recipe using your air fryer
The exact ingredients with measurements can be found in the recipe card below along with more concise abbreviated instructions. Read on for more details, tips, and tricks so that you will feel confident making this recipe.
Making tacos in the air fryer is super easy and fun to do. This is a recipe that kids can participate in! Just make sure that an adult handles the hot air fryer.
Step one: Mix and measure
Measure out and mix together the seasonings and set them aside. If you want to use premixed taco seasoning, that should be fine. The ingredients aren’t exactly the same but you only sprinkle a little bit on so it won’t matter much. Make sure your seasoning mix doesn’t contain sugar because that might cause it to burn in the air fryer.
Mix together the refried beans and green chili peppers. The chili peppers I buy are mild. If you are making these mini tacos for a family, you should probably keep it that way. My husband ate these and he does not like things spicy. He didn’t even comment – except for “yum”!
Measure out the cheese and set it aside. Try to find a vegan cheese that actually tastes good and melts. Luckily for us, vegan cheese has come a long way over the last couple of years!
Step 2: Prepare the tiny tacos
I lay my small flour tortillas out on parchment paper. This makes clean-up a snap! Spoon a small portion of the refried bean mixture into the center of each flour tortilla. Spread it out – but not to the edges, then sprinkle on a small amount of shredded cheese. You don’t want to fill the tiny tacos too full or they will come apart and be a mess in the air fryer.
Now fold the mini tacos over and one at a time, brush a small amount of oil on each side of the folded-over prepared tortillas. Sprinkle the seasonings evenly on each side.
Can I make air fryer tacos without oil?
I’m sure that my oil-free readers will be wondering if you can make these air fryer tacos without the oil. The answer for this recipe is not really. You need to use this small amount of oil (one teaspoon per serving) for a couple of reasons.
First of all, the taco seasoning won’t stick if it doesn’t have something to stick to. Secondly, the air fryer tacos will have a more crispy taste and texture if you use this small amount of oil.
Step 3: Air frying the tiny tacos
Preheat the air fryer to 350° and select 10 minutes for the cook time. There is no need to use an air fryer basket cover for this recipe. Nor do you need to spray non-stick cooking spray. In fact, read your owner’s manual. Using cooking spray might damage the coating on your air fryer basket.
After the air fryer has preheated, add the prepared mini tacos, making sure they are spaced evenly. They shouldn’t be overlapping. If your air fryer basket is too small for this, then cook the tiny tacos in batches.
Air fry for 10 minutes, carefully flipping over each mini taco at the halfway point with tongs. Remember that all air fryers cook a little bit differently. The first time you make this recipe you should check frequently after the half-way point to make sure they aren’t burning or cooking too fast. You can then adjust the cook time next time you make them.
For some other great air fryer vegan recipes from Veggie Fun Kitchen, try
- Garlicky Air Fryer Croutons
- Air Fryer Sweet Potato Cubes with Red Onion
- Maple Glazed Brussles Sprouts in the AIr Fryer
- BBQ Buffalo Wings
- How to Air Fry Corn on the Cob
The printable recipe card for vegan air fryer tacos
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Bean and Cheese Air Fryer Tacos – Tiny Tacos
- air fryer
- 6 4" street tacos flour tortillas
- ½ cup refried beans see notes
- 1 Tablespoon diced green chilis
- ⅓ cup vegan cheese
- ¼ teaspoon chili powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon cumin
- ⅛ teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons avocado oil
- Mix together the refried beans and green chilis. Set aside.
- Spoon a small portion of the refried bean mixture onto each street taco flour tortilla. Sprinkle on a small amount of cheese. Fold over.
- Mix together the chili powder, garlic powder, salt, and ground cumin.
- Brush a small amount of oil on each side of the folded-over prepared tortillas. Sprinkle the seasonings evenly on all sides.
- Preheat the air fryer to 350° and select 10 minutes for the cook times.
- After the air fryer has preheated, add the prepared mini tacos, making sure they are spaced evenly. They shouldn't be overlapping. If your air fryer basket is too small for this, then cook in batches.
- Air fry for 10 minutes, carefully flipping over each mini taco at the halfway point with tongs. See notes for cooking time suggestions.
- Serve with guacamole, salsa, pink onions, jalapenos, or whatever suits your crowd.