These Mixed Berry Cheesecake Tacos are a hit at barbecues, kids’ parties, as easy midweek desserts and so much more. They offer a refreshingly fun dessert alternative that will easily get everyone excited.
Building your dessert tacos with various toppings is also a fun way to get the kids involved in the kitchen…you’ll be amazed by how many variations you could make just by following the base recipe for these dessert tacos. If you love hand-held desserts, check out these Strawberry Rhubarb Hand Pies.
What are Cheesecake Tacos?
Cheesecake tacos, like these Mixed Berry Cheesecake Tacos, are a fun and sweet twist to ordinary savory tacos.
The taco shells are made from flour tortillas that are trimmed to size using a cookie cutter and then deep-fried. Once crispy, they are then coated in a cinnamon-sugar mix and then filled with a cheesecake filling, and topped with a mix of fresh berries or whatever other filling and topping you’d like to add!
Variations and Substitutions
- For a chocolate cheesecake taco – add cocoa powder to the cheesecake mixture. Crushed Oreos as a topping would work too with some chocolate sauce.
- For a key lime pie cheesecake taco – add a teaspoon of lime juice and zest (either lime or lemon zest) to the cheesecake filling and sprinkle crushed graham crackers on top.
- For a themed cheesecake taco – add some food coloring to the cheesecake filling (pink for Valentine’s, Green for St. Patrick’s, Purple or Orange for Halloween) topped with theme-appropriate sprinkles.
- For a boozy cheesecake taco – add your favorite cream liqueur to the cheesecake filling!
Yes, you can! If you prefer not to deep fry your taco shells, you can either air fry them (check out the details I outline for this in my Cherry Cheesecake Tacos recipe) or you can bake your taco shells in the oven.
To bake in the oven, follow the recipe directions listed but instead of dipping your taco shells in hot oil, bake them in the oven in taco shell molds for 10 minutes at 400℉. It’s best to spritz both sides of your tortillas with olive oil and then bake them.
I haven’t tried making the taco shells in the oven so I’m not sure if the cinnamon sugar will stick to the shells after baking. If you’re concerned that they might not, then consider adding the sugar coating before they go into the oven.
These dessert tacos can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days and are therefore ideal for making in advance. I always opt to make mine fresh since the longer you store the fully assembled tacos, the softer the tacos will become.
Making them a few hours before serving will ensure that you still get that crispy texture of the fried taco shell.
Another way to make this dessert ahead of time is to make the cheesecake filling in advance and then freeze it till ready to use. I don’t suggest that you freeze anything other than the cheesecake filling though – fully assembled dessert tacos don’t hold up well after having been frozen for any length of time.
- Make sure that your cream cheese is at room temperature when making the taco filling as this will help to mix the ingredients for a smooth consistency. You can either leave your cream cheese out at room temperature for 10 minutes or microwave it for a few seconds to get it to room temperature.
- You can use white or brown sugar when coating these taco shells and you can also omit the cinnamon if you wish. Make sure that you coat the shells immediately after frying so that the sugar mixture adheres well to the shells before the oil dries.
- You can easily use a mixed berry canned pie filling instead of fresh mixed berries if you prefer.
- This recipe will make 18 tacos which can change depending on the size of your cookie cutter. The quantity may also change if you’ve opted to buy pre-made packaged taco shells.
- If you anticipate feeding a crowd i.e. at a party, then you can easily double this recipe without any issues. Likewise, if you want to halve the number of tacos, go right ahead!
Mixed Berry Cheesecake Tacos
- 1 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened
- ⅓ cup powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 8 oz. tub Cool Whip frozen whipped topping, thawed
- 2 cups fresh berries blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries, rinsed and pat dry
Taco Shell Ingredients
- 18 street taco size flour tortillas or cut soft taco size tortillas to a 4” round with a bowl, glass, or cookie cutter
- Vegetable oil or shortening for frying at least 4 cups
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- Preheat the oil to 350°F in a deep stockpot or Dutch oven.
- In a medium mixing bowl, beat together cream cheese, powdered sugar, and vanilla extract until thoroughly combined.
- Add in Cool Whip and continue beating until mixture is smooth and fluffy.
- Transfer mixture to a piping bag fitted with Tip #1M or to a gallon size Ziploc bag. Set in refrigerator to stay cold while preparing taco shells.
- When oil has reached a temperature of precisely 350°, it’s time to fry the taco shells.
- Using long-handled tongs (to keep your hands far away from the oil), pinch together two sides of a tortilla to form a folded taco shape. Holding the sides together, submerge the tortilla into the oil, frying for 1-2 minutes.
- The tortilla will bubble up. If you lose your grip with the tongs, just use them to fold the taco back in half and keep it submerged to brown the inside and outside evenly.
- When the tortilla is lightly browned, remove from the oil and place directly in the tray of cinnamon sugar.
- Use a spoon to sprinkle the cinnamon sugar evenly over the tortilla (inside and out) and then set on a paper-towel lined inverted muffin tin to help the taco shells hold their shape while cooling.
- When tacos shells are cooled, pipe a line of cheesecake filling across the center of the taco.
- Top with a spoonful of mixed berries.
- Serve immediately.
- Store leftovers in the refrigerator for 2-3 days. The crispness of the fried tortillas is best within a few hours.
- The cream cheese should be at room temperature so that it mixes smoothly into the cheesecake filling mixture.
- Cheesecake filling can be stored in the refrigerator (in an airtight container) for up to 1 week or frozen for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator and then pipe into freshly fried “taco” shells.
- Fried tortillas can be coated in just white sugar or brown sugar if you’d like to omit the cinnamon. Place the fried tortillas into the sugar coating right after frying as the oil helps the sugar stick to the shells.
- You could also top with blueberry, strawberry, or cherry pie filling.