Best Store-Bought Taco Shells

Tacos are a popular Mexican dish that have become beloved all around the world. Tacos are assembled by placing ingredients inside a taco shell or tortilla. The taco shell provides a crispy and crunchy texture that perfectly complements the other soft fillings. When choosing a taco shell, there are a few key considerations to keep in mind.

Best Store-Bought Taco Shells

The main options for taco shells are hard shells or soft tortillas. Hard taco shells are U-shaped and are rigid to provide a nice crunch. Soft taco shells are made from flour or corn tortillas that are more pliable. There are also bowl-shaped tostada shells that can be used.

Some key aspects to look at when selecting taco shells are the size, flavor, and type of shell. Personal taste will play a big role as some prefer hard shells while others like soft tortillas for their tacos. It's also important to consider what ingredients will go into the tacos when picking the shell.

Ortega Mini Taco Slider Shells (Yellow Corn)

Ortega Mini Taco Slider Shells, Yellow Corn, 4.4 Ounce, 18 Shells

    Ortega Mini Taco Slider Shells offer the great taste and texture of mini yellow corn shells to help you prepare fun and tasty Mexican meals. Fill these crunchy and crispy taco shells with your favorite meat mixture, lettuce, tomato, cheese and taco sauce to enjoy delicious mini tacos with family and friends. Conveniently sized for kids and offering portion control for adults, these kosher, hard taco shells are a flavorful choice for people with dietary restrictions. This taco shell kit contains 18 small taco shells that come ready to eat out of the box. Ortega hopes to help you create fond memories of great meals shared with your family.

    Key features:

    • 18 mini yellow corn taco shells per box
    • Kosher certified
    • Hard, crispy shells
    • Convenient size for kids and portion control


    • Great taste and texture
    • Fun size for mini tacos
    • Good for dietary restrictions
    • Ready to eat


    • Can break during shipping

    Taco Bell Mild Crunchy Taco Shells

    Taco Bell Mild Seasoned Flavor Crunchy Taco Shells, 12 ct, 4.8 oz Box

      Taco Bell Mild Crunchy Flavored Shells are coated with a mouthwatering spice blend inspired by the craveable Taco Bell Mild sauce packets, adding an extra boost of flavor and a pop of color to your everyday taco shell. With notes of tomato and onion, these shells pack a bold yet balanced flavor to enhance your meal without overpowering your dish. Cook up your favorite protein with Taco Bell signature seasonings and throw it in the flavored shell along with your choice of toppings to elevate your meal. Each box contains 12 bold crunchy mild taco shells that comfortably feed up to a group of four. Experience your favorite Taco Bell flavors in new and exciting ways with Taco Bell Mild Crunchy Flavored Shells!

      Key features:

      • 12 taco shells per box
      • Coated in Taco Bell inspired mild spice blend
      • Bold, crunchy shells
      • Feeds up to 4


      • Fun Taco Bell flavor
      • Well-seasoned and flavorful
      • Crunchy texture
      • Good portion size


      • Flavor not for everyone
      • Can be messy

      Ortega Taco Shells (Yellow Corn)

      Ortega Taco Shells, Yellow Corn, 18 Count

        Ortega Taco Shells are crispy and crunchy taco shells perfect for preparing fun and tasty Mexican meals. Ortega Taco Shells are gluten-free, cholesterol-free and certified kosher. This box contains 18 corn taco shells that come ready to eat out of the box. You can taste the difference with Ortega Taco Shells as Ortega makes Mexican meals easy.

        The 150 year Ortega tradition all started with Maria Conception Jacinta Dominguez Ortega, or as they like to call her, Mama. In the 1800s, Mama and her beloved family lived in a small three-room adobe home in Ventura, California, common to the Spanish settlements of the time. Inside the thick adobe walls, Mama Ortega created a loving home for her 13 children centered around their tiny kitchen. With a small charcoal-burning stove, Mama Ortega whipped up memorable meals her family loved with homegrown, handpicked and handmade ingredients. Today, Ortega hopes to help you create fond memories of great meals shared with your family.

        Key features:

        • 18 yellow corn taco shells
        • Gluten-free and kosher certified
        • Come ready to eat out of the box
        • 150 year Ortega family tradition


        • Tasty, crunchy shells
        • Easy to make Mexican meals
        • Good size box
        • Quality ingredients


        • Can break during shipping
        • Expensive compared to other brands

        Garden of Eatin' Taco Dinner Kit (Yellow Corn)

        Garden of Eatin', Yellow Corn Taco Shells, Dinner Kit, 12 Taco Shells, 9.4 Oz

          Garden of Eatin' Yellow Corn Taco Dinner Kits make it easy to prepare tasty tacos in minutes. True to tradition, their taco shells, seasoning and sauce are made with the same wholesome ingredients and organic corn that go into all Garden of Eatin’ products. For over 35 years, Garden of Eatin' has been providing great tasting snack options made with quality ingredients. They use only organic corn, harvested by sustainable farming partners and carefully shaped into one-of-a-kind chips. Their chips are made in a slow process that gives a more satisfying crunch. This kit contains 12 yellow corn taco shells, taco seasoning and taco sauce to make tacos for the whole family.

          Key features:

          • 12 yellow corn taco shells
          • Taco seasoning and taco sauce
          • Made with organic ingredients
          • 35+ years of quality snacks


          • Easy, tasty taco dinner
          • Quality ingredients
          • Good value kit
          • Satisfying crunch


          • Sauce packet changed
          • Shells can break during shipping

          La Tiara Taco Shells

          La Tiara Taco Shells, 12-count Box (Pack of Six Boxes)

            La Tiara Authentic Mexican Taco Shells are made with yellow corn. There are 12 taco shells per box, with 6 boxes total for a total of 72 taco shells. La Tiara shells have a lightweight, flexible crispness. Because they are so lightweight, the shells flex nicely and break much less often compared to other brands. Customers say La Tiara makes the best tasting taco shells, with a flavorful, thin, crispy shell. Although the shells are fragile, they taste just like the homemade shells you get in restaurants. La Tiara shells add joy to your taco night.

            Key features:

            • 72 yellow corn taco shells
            • 6 boxes with 12 shells per box
            • Lightweight and flexible
            • Authentic Mexican recipe


            • Best flavor
            • Less likely to break
            • Light and crispy
            • Restaurant quality


            • Fragile shells
            • Can be stale if old stock

            Ortega Yellow Corn Taco Shells

            Ortega Yellow Corn Taco Shells, 4.9 Ounce, 12 Shells

              Ortega has been making quality Mexican food products for over 150 years. Founded by the Ortega family in California, the company started by growing and selling fresh chiles. Today, Ortega offers a variety of Mexican-inspired ingredients to make cooking easy and delicious.

              Ortega Yellow Corn Taco Shells provide an authentic crispy base for building tasty tacos at home. The shells are made from stone-ground yellow corn masa flour and lightly fried for a satisfying crunch. They have the signature corn flavor expected in a quality taco shell.

              These gluten-free taco shells contain only three simple ingredients and no artificial flavors. The shells arrive ready to fill straight from the box. Their triangular shape and flat bottoms allow them to stand up for easy loading of fillings. Customize tacos to please everyone by adding favorite meats, beans, cheeses, veggies, salsas and more.

              Key features:

              • Authentic corn masa flour flavor
              • Crispy and crunchy texture
              • Naturally gluten-free
              • Flat bottom stands upright
              • Ready to fill from the box


              • Delicious corn flavor
              • Sturdy shells don't fall apart
              • Ideal shape for filling
              • Clean ingredients


              • Can break during shipping

              365 by Whole Foods Market, Organic Yellow Taco Shells

              365 by Whole Foods Market, Organic Yellow Taco Shells, 5.5 Ounce

                365 by Whole Foods Market offers quality grocery products at affordable prices. Their organic yellow corn taco shells add fun flavor to taco night.

                These shells get their satisfying crunch from frying organic stone-ground masa flour. The authentic corn taste comes from using the finest ingredients. The shells arrive packaged to maintain freshness and crispness.

                Taco lovers will enjoy the bold yellow corn flavor in every bite. The shells hold their shape well when loading up hearty taco fillings. Their flat bottom allows them to stand upright for easy eating.

                Key features:

                • Organic yellow corn masa flour
                • Light and crispy texture
                • Sturdy flat bottom
                • No artificial flavors


                • Great corn flavor
                • Holds shape when filled
                • Organic and non-GMO
                • Stands upright


                • Can break during shipping

                Old El Paso Stand 'N Stuff Taco Shells, Gluten Free, Family Size

                Old El Paso Stand 'N Stuff Taco Shells, Gluten Free, Family Size, 20-count

                  Old El Paso makes tasty Mexican-style favorites that have been enjoyed by families for over 80 years. Their Stand 'N Stuff taco shells allow for easy taco making at home.

                  The extra-large shells are designed to stay upright for convenient filling. Their flat bottoms keep them stable on the plate or in the shell holder. The shells have a satisfying crunch thanks to frying with corn masa flour.

                  These gluten-free taco shells allow you to customize tacos for family and friends. Fill them with favorite meats, cheeses, beans, veggies and toppings. The 20-count family size box provides shells for serving a crowd.

                  Key features:

                  • Sturdy flat bottom to stand upright
                  • Crispy corn masa flour shells
                  • Naturally gluten-free
                  • Generous 20-shell family size


                  • Holds shape when filled
                  • Large size for more fillings
                  • Great for gatherings
                  • Gluten-free


                  • Can break in shipping

                  365 by Whole Foods Market, Organic Blue Taco Shells

                  365 by Whole Foods Market, Organic Blue Taco Shells, 5.5 Ounce

                    365 by Whole Foods Market creates quality organic groceries at affordable prices. Their blue corn taco shells add Southwestern flair to taco night.

                    These shells get a satisfying crunch from frying organic blue corn masa flour. The shells have a richer corn taste and bolder color from the blue corn. They arrive sealed to maintain freshness and crispness.

                    The flat bottom allows them to stand upright when filled with favorite taco ingredients. The organic shells bring an authentic flavor that pairs well with Southwestern style fillings. Customize tacos to please all tastes.

                    Key features:

                    • Organic blue corn masa flour
                    • Crispy and crunchy texture
                    • Sturdy flat bottom
                    • Certified USDA Organic


                    • Great blue corn flavor
                    • Holds shape well when filled
                    • Organic and non-GMO
                    • Stands upright


                    • Can break in shipping

                    Old El Paso Crunchy Taco Shells, Gluten-Free

                    Old El Paso Crunchy Taco Shells, Gluten-Free, 12 ct., 4.6 oz. (Pack of 12)

                      Old El Paso has been making Mexican-inspired favorites enjoyed by families for over 80 years. Their crunchy taco shells provide a satisfying base for taco night.

                      These classic taco shells get their crispy texture from frying with corn masa flour. They have a delicious corn flavor expected in an authentic taco shell. The shells contain only three simple gluten-free ingredients.

                      Customize tacos for the whole family by filling the shells with favorite meats, cheeses, beans, lettuce, salsa and more. The 12-count box provides enough shells for serving a crowd. Reheat the shells in the oven or microwave before filling for extra crispness.

                      Key features:

                      • Authentic corn masa flavor
                      • Satisfying crispy crunch
                      • Naturally gluten-free
                      • Generous 12-count size


                      • Great classic taco flavor
                      • Nice and crispy
                      • Easy customization
                      • Generous amount


                      • Can break during shipping

                      Buying Guide for Taco Shells

                      When it comes to selecting taco shells, there are a few main considerations including size, texture, flavor, and preparation style. Thinking through these key factors will ensure you choose the best option for your needs.

                      Determining the Right Size

                      Taco shells come in a range of sizes from snack size up to large burrito sized tortillas. Consider what ingredients you'll be filling your tacos with to determine the right size. Here are some common taco shell sizes to choose from:

                      • Snack size - 4 inches - Good for appetizer tacos with just a few fillings
                      • Street size - 5 inches - The typical taco truck size shell for filling with standard taco ingredients
                      • Medium size - 6 inches - Allows for more fillings than a street taco
                      • Burrito size - 10 inches or larger - Extralarge tortillas perfect for a fully loaded taco

                      If you'll be making tacos with minimal ingredients or for kids, opt for a smaller taco shell size. For heartier tacos loaded up with fillings, go for a medium or burrito sized option.

                      Hard, Soft, or Bowl: Picking the Texture

                      The texture of your taco shell impacts the eating experience. Hard and soft shells both have their advantages.

                      Hard taco shells provide a satisfying crunch with each bite. Look for hard shells made from crispy corn. Hard shells hold their U-shape well for loading up with toppings and are fun for kids. However, they can sometimes crack or break with heavy fillings.

                      Soft taco shells offer more flexibility when eating and allow you to include more ingredients without things falling out. Flour tortillas have a softer texture while corn tortillas are more rigid but still pliable. Soft shells make tacos less messy to eat.

                      Tostada or bowl shells have a flat bottom and curved edges to hold ample toppings. They provide a crispy base meant for fork and knife tacos piled high with ingredients.

                      Think about the dining experience you want. Hard shells are more playful for bite-sized tacos while soft tortillas are better for larger tacos and less messy eating.

                      Choosing Flavored or Plain Shells

                      Taco shells come in both plain and flavored varieties. Consider taste preferences when selecting your shells.

                      • Plain shells are versatile for using with any taco fillings. Made simply from corn or flour.
                      • Flavored shells like chili lime or cilantro add extra zest and seasoning. Nice for quick and easy tacos.

                      Herbed, lime, and chili flavors give shells an extra kick. Flavored shells complement bold taco fillings like chicken or steak. For more mild fillings like fish or vegetables, a plain shell allows the ingredients to shine.

                      Think about the ingredients you’ll be pairing the shell with when deciding between plain or flavored shells. Flavored shells eliminate the need to season further. Kids often enjoy the fun flavors of flavored shells as well.

                      Preparing Different Shell Types

                      Hard, soft, and tostada taco shells all require a slightly different preparation method. Here are some tips for getting your shells taco ready:

                      • Hard taco shells - Gently warm in the oven at 300°F for 5 minutes before filling to make crispy. Fill while still slightly warm so they don't crack.
                      • Soft flour tortillas - Quickly warm on a hot skillet for 20 seconds per side to make pliable for folding around fillings. Keep unused tortillas wrapped in foil while assembling tacos to stay warm. Can also wrap in a damp paper towel and microwave for 15 seconds.
                      • Soft corn tortillas - Heat in a dry skillet over medium heat for 1 minute per side until lightly browned. Or wrap in damp paper towels and microwave 30 seconds to soften. Place wax paper sheets between tortillas to prevent sticking.
                      • Tostada shells - Bake in a 375°F oven for 3-5 minutes to warm through and crisp slightly. Top immediately so they don't lose their crunch.

                      Now that you know how to warm different types of taco shells, you’ll be ready to perfectly prepare them for taco night!

                      Purchasing Taco Shells

                      When purchasing taco shells, you can find options at the grocery store or make your own. Here are some buying tips:

                      • Check the international food aisle for authentic corn tortillas. Look for brands imported from Mexico.
                      • For hard shells, browse the Mexican food section. Look for sturdy shells that don’t appear cracked or brittle.
                      • Purchase soft tortillas from the bread aisle, produce section, or freezer section depending on the type of tortilla.
                      • Check bulk bins for fresh tortilla chips that can also serve as tostada shells when making fork and knife tacos.
                      • Make your own shells using 6-inch corn tortillas. Simply fry or bake into a U-shape.

                      For best freshness, look for taco shells with no more than a month until the expiration date. Stale shells will crack more easily. Store unused shells in a sealed container at room temperature to prevent them from drying out.

                      With so many options, you can experiment to find your favorite taco shells for weeknight meals or next taco party! Consider the size, texture, flavor, and preparation style when selecting shells.

                      Key Factors When Buying Taco Shells

                      To recap, here are the key factors to keep in mind:

                      • Size - Choose based on amount of fillings and personal preferences
                      • Texture - Hard, soft, or tostada style based on desired crunch factor
                      • Flavor - Plain or flavored shells depending on other taco ingredients
                      • Preparation - Follow proper cooking methods to warm each type of shell
                      • Freshness - Check expiration dates and storage guidelines

                      Considering these aspects will ensure you select the best taco shells for your tacos. Depending on the toppings, occasion, and who you’re serving, different factors may be more important to focus on when making your pick.


                      What's the most authentic taco shell?

                      Corn tortillas are the original taco shell, dating back to Mexican street vendors. Soft corn tortillas offer an authentic taste and texture.

                      Are hard or soft taco shells more popular?

                      It's split fairly evenly between preferences for hard or soft shells. According to taco enthusiasts, soft tortillas make tacos less prone to breaking but hard shells are more fun.

                      What are tostada shells made of?

                      Tostada shells are made from corn tortillas that have been fried until they become flat and crispy. You can use store bought tostada shells or make your own by frying corn tortillas.

                      Should you toast soft taco shells?

                      It's optional to toast or warm soft taco shells. Warming briefly improves the flavor and makes tortillas more pliable to wrap around fillings without cracking. But soft shells can also be served straight from the package.

                      Can I make my own taco shells?

                      Yes, it's easy to make your own taco shells! For hard shells, fry 6-inch corn tortillas into a curved U-shape. For soft shells, simply use corn or flour tortillas straight from the store.

                      What's the best way to heat hard taco shells?

                      For maximum crispness, lightly bake hard taco shells in a 300°F oven for 5 minutes before filling. Microwaving makes them rubbery. Fill shells while still warm so they don't break.

                      How long do leftover taco shells last?

                      Unused taco shells will last about 5-7 days in the pantry. For maximum freshness and to prevent cracking, store shells in a sealed container at room temperature away from light and moisture.


                      With so many varieties, taco shells make a fun base for weeknight meals, parties, or dipping into hummus! Hard, soft, and tostada shells each have their advantages depending on the tacos you're making.

                      Consider the size, texture, flavors, and preparation method that suits your needs.

                      Tacos offer endless combinations of global ingredients wrapped or piled onto a shell.

                      Whether you prefer corn or flour, crunchy or soft, taco shells bring people together over a simple, tasty tradition.


                      1. Old El Paso Stand 'N Stuff Taco Shells - These taco shells are easy to prepare and have a good taste, according to a review on the Old El Paso website.
                      2. Walmart Taco Shells - Walmart offers a variety of taco shells, including Old El Paso Crunchy Taco Shells, which are gluten-free and come in a pack of 12.
                      3. Healthy Heart Market Taco Bell Crunchy Taco Shells - These sodium-free taco shells from Taco Bell are perfect for hard shell tacos or to crunch up for a taco salad. Each box comes with 12 shells.
                      4. Trader Joe's Taco Shells with Organic Corn - These taco shells from Trader Joe's are made with organic corn and are a solid choice in the pantry aisle, according to a review on
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                      AGAH Productions