Southwest Egg Rolls
These Southwest Egg Rolls are crispy on the outside and stuffed with a taco-flavored filling of chicken, cheese, and vegetables. It’s a hearty, easy appetizer that the whole family will love. Serve them hot and fresh, with plenty of lime crema for dipping!
Easy Southwest Chicken Egg Rolls
These Southwest Egg Rolls are packed with flavor, and perfectly golden and crispy. They’re absolutely irresistible with a refreshing lime crema for dipping!
I love an easy appetizer that’s hearty enough to double as a meal. That’s exactly how I like to eat Chilis Southwest Egg Rolls. If you’re also a fan of this appetizer at Chili’s, you’re gonna love this recipe!
Southwest egg rolls feature a filling of chicken, cheese, black beans, corn, peppers, and onions, all tossed in a homemade taco seasoning. Rolled up in an egg roll wrapper, they’re fried until perfectly golden and crispy.
And the lime crema is irresistibly delicious and so fun for dipping!
Also to note. These southwest chicken egg rolls are 100% customizable. I’ve included plenty of suggestions below for other filling ingredients and dipping sauces, as well as how to make them vegetarian and even vegan.
What You’ll Need
These egg rolls are stuffed with chicken, cheese, and other Southwest ingredients and flavors. See the recipe card for measurements.
For the Egg Rolls
- Chicken – Chicken adds protein and heartiness to the egg rolls. I use one oven-roasted chicken breast or leftover rotisserie chicken, but canned chicken would also work.
- Corn & black beans – Classic additions to Southwest egg rolls, the corn adds sweetness and crunch while the beans add a soft, earthy flavor. You can use canned beans and corn. Frozen, defrosted corn also works. And when it’s sweetcorn season, by all means, use fresh sweetcorn – it makes these egg rolls even more amazing!
- Cheddar cheese – Cheddar cheese helps hold the filling together and makes the egg rolls gooey and cheesy. Feel free to use any Mexican blend, pepper jack, colby jack, etc.
- Onion & bell pepper – Red onion and red bell pepper add flavor, crunch, and color to the egg rolls. Dice them very small – the filling doesn’t get cooked before frying, so this avoids large bites of harsh onion. Plus, the smaller size helps the filling stay together better.
- Cilantro – Adds freshness to the egg rolls. Feel free to swap it for parsley or leave it out entirely.
- Jalapeno – Jalapeno adds a bit of heat. Feel free to skip it if you don’t want that kick. Or add more if you like!
- Lime – I LOVE fresh lime, and include it in both the egg rolls and the crema. It adds great acidity and really brightens up this recipe.
- Seasonings – Make a homemade taco seasoning using garlic powder, chili powder, cumin, paprika, onion powder, and salt. Or swap for 1 tablespoon of your favorite store-bought taco seasoning.
- Egg roll wrappers – I use store-bought egg roll wrappers because they’re super easy to use, are the perfect size, and give great results. Find them in the fresh produce refrigerated section at the grocery store or Asian market.
- Vegetable oil – I use vegetable oil to fry the egg rolls, but canola or refined peanut oil would also work.
For the Lime Crema
- Mexican crema – Mexican crema is a creamy topping that is a bit looser than sour cream, but with the same great tang. If you can’t find crema, just use ½ cup sour cream + 1-2 tablespoons of milk to get a dippable consistency.
- Lime juice & zest – Fresh lime juice loosens up the crema a bit more, for easy dipping. And the juice and zest add delicious flavor!
- Chili lime seasoning – Add chili lime seasoning to the crema to add a bit of flavor, spice, and citrus acidity. I use either Trader Joe’s Chile Lime Seasoning (affiliate link) or Tajin (affiliate link), which are a couple of our family’s favorite seasonings!
Can I Make These Vegetarian or Vegan?
These egg rolls can easily be made vegetarian – just leave out the chicken. To make these vegan, leave out the cheese as well (or swap for a vegan cheese) and serve the egg rolls with salsa instead of crema.
Other Filling Ideas
You can put pretty much anything inside of an egg roll, so feel free to add your favorite taco toppings. Here are a few other ideas:
- A different kind of bean
- Cucumber, diced
- Spinach, chopped
- Mushrooms, chopped and sauteed
- Green onions, chopped
- Other meats – cooked, chopped steak, pork, or shrimp – or cooked, ground beef, pork, chicken, or turkey
How to Make Southwest Egg Rolls
These homemade egg rolls are easy to assemble and fry. Perfect for game day, an anytime appetizer, or a playful meal!
- Combine the ingredients. Combine the chicken, corn, beans, cheese, vegetables, cilantro, seasonings, and lime juice in a bowl.
- Fill the wrappers. Add 1/3 cup of the filling to each egg roll wrapper. Bring the bottom of the wrapper up to cover the filling, then fold in the sides and roll up from the bottom – as if you were rolling a burrito. Then brush the top edge with water – and roll and press to seal. Repeat until all egg rolls are made.
- Fry. Heat at least 3″ of oil in a large, heavy-bottomed pan until it reaches 365° F. Add a few egg rolls to the pan, taking care to not overcrowd it. Fry for 3-4 minutes, or until golden and crispy. Remove from the pan with a strainer to remove any excess oil and place on a wire rack over a rimmed baking sheet.
- Make the crema. Whisk together the crema ingredients.
- Enjoy. Serve immediately, while the egg rolls are still hot – with the lime crema for dipping, of course!
Can I Make These In The Air Fryer?
Yes, you can easily make these in the air fryer if you don’t want to deal with the frying pan!
- Spray the air fryer basket lightly with olive oil spray.
- Add a few egg rolls, making sure not to crowd the pan.
- Brush the egg rolls with an egg wash (a beaten egg with a splash of water) and spray them with olive oil spray. This will help them become crisp and shiny.
- Air fry for 8 minutes and then flip and cook for an additional 3-5 minutes, or until golden brown.
Can I Bake These Homemade Egg Rolls?
Yes, you can also bake these southwest chicken egg rolls. Just know that they won’t have the usual “fried” texture and flavor.
- Preheat the oven to 400° F.
- Lightly spray a baking sheet with olive oil spray and place the egg rolls seam-side down.
- Spray the egg rolls with olive oil spray and bake for 10 minutes.
- Flip the egg rolls and bake for another 5-8 minutes, or until hot and golden brown.
Tips for Success
Here are a few tips to help you make the best southwest egg rolls.
- Don’t overstuff the wrappers. If you add too much filling, the wrappers won’t seal and the filling will fall out in the frying pan.
- Use a candy thermometer to check the oil temperature. You want the oil to be hot, right at 365° F, when you drop the egg rolls in. Otherwise, the outside won’t get so beautifully crispy. If the oil isn’t hot enough, the egg rolls will be soggy and greasy. If it’s too hot, the egg rolls will burn before the filling is heated through.
- Don’t crowd the frying pan. The egg rolls will need to be cooked in batches. Avoid putting too many in the pan at once, as it’ll prevent them from cooking evenly.
What to Serve with Southwest Egg Rolls
I obviously like to serve these egg rolls with the lime crema. The cool creaminess complements the flavors of the egg roll perfectly and the lime just brightens it all up.
If you’d like to add another layer of flavor, set out a jar of pickled red onions. This tangy, crunchy condiment pairs wonderfully with these southwest egg rolls!
For a drink without alcohol, we like to pour club soda or Topo Chico (affiliate link) over ice. Then squeeze fresh lime wedges into the glass. It’s light and bubbly and refreshing!
How to Store & Reheat Leftovers
Southwest chicken egg rolls are best enjoyed immediately but they can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to four days. Keep in mind they will lose their crispness in the fridge.
I recommend reheating them in the air fryer for 4 minutes or so, which may help them regain some of the crispness. You can also gently reheat in a nonstick fry pan. If you use the microwave, the egg rolls won’t be crispy but they’ll still taste great.
More Easy Appetizers:
- Cheesy Beef Taco Dip
- Armadillo Eggs
- Air Fryer Shrimp
- Bacon Wrapped Smokies (3 Ways)
- Everything Bagel Pigs in a Blanket
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For the Egg Rolls
- 2 cups chopped cooked chicken
- 1 can (15 ounces) corn, drained and rinsed
- 1 can (15 ounces) black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1½ cups shredded cheddar cheese
- ½ cup finely diced red onion
- ½ cup finely diced red bell pepper
- ¼ cup chopped cilantro
- 1 jalapeno, minced (optional)
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt.
- 20 egg roll wrappers
- Vegetable oil, for frying
For the Lime Crema
- ½ cup Mexican crema (or sour cream)
- 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 teaspoon lime zest
- ½ teaspoon chili lime seasoning - I use either TraderJoe’s Chile Lime Seasoning or Tajin
For the Egg Rolls
- In a large bowl, mix together the chicken, corn, black beans, cheddar cheese, red onion, red bell pepper, cilantro, jalapeno, lime juice, garlic powder, chili powder, cumin, paprika,
onion powder, and salt.
- Add ⅓ cup of filling to each egg roll wrapper and roll them up like a burrito – bring the bottom of the wrapper up to cover the filling and then fold in the sides and roll up from the bottom.
Brush the top edge of the egg roll wrapper with water to seal in the filling. Repeat until all egg rolls are made.
- Add at least 3” of vegetable oil to a large heavy bottomed pot or Dutch oven. Heat the oil to 365° F, using a kitchen thermometer to monitor the temperature.
- Carefully add a few egg rolls to the oil (make sure not to overcrowd the pan) and fry for 3-4 minutes, or until they're golden brown.
- Use a strainer or slotted spoon to remove the egg rolls from the oil and place them on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining egg rolls.
- Enjoy the egg rolls immediately, with lime crema for dipping.
For the Lime Crema
- Whisk together the crema, lime juice, lime zest, and chili lime seasoning in a small bowl. Serve immediately or place in the fridge in an airtight container until ready to use.
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Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 400Total Fat: 15gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 58mgSodium: 832mgCarbohydrates: 48gFiber: 3gSugar: 4gProtein: 19g
Nutrition information is automatically calculated by Nutritionix. I am not a nutritionist and cannot guarantee accuracy. If your health depends on nutrition information, please calculate again with your own favorite calculator.