Give the appetizer spread a fresh and flavorful offering! These festive Mexican Pinwheels feature shredded chicken tossed with a creamy chipotle sauce, a crunchy medley of fresh vegetables and loads of cilantro. Serve a lime cream on the side for the ultimate healthy-ish appetizer. 

Ingredients in Mexican Pinwheels

Flour Tortillas

You’ll need large burrito-style tortillas for this recipe. Seek our fresh, pliable flour tortillas for the best results. We really like Frescados tortillas. 

Mozzarella Cheese

A bit of shredded cheese is added for flavor of course, but it also acts as a binder and holds everything together. You can use pre-shredded or shred a block of mozzarella yourself. 

Sour Cream

Sour cream is the base of our creamy chipotle sauce. We recommend using regular sour cream—low fat sour cream just doesn’t add the same flavor or creaminess. We also use sour cream to make a very simple lime crema to dip the pinwheels in. 

Chipotles in Adobo 

Canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce are dried jalapeños that have been smoked and then rehydrated in a tangy and spicy tomato sauce. For this recipe you will need both the chipotle peppers and the adobo sauce it’s packed in. Look for chipotle peppers in the Mexican section of the grocery store or at any Mexican market.


A touch of ground cumin adds flavor to the creamy chipotle sauce. 


You’ll need shredded cooked chicken for these pinwheels. We recommend grabbing a rotisserie chicken from the grocery store—it’s convenient, consistently delicious, and saves you time from having to cook it yourself. 


These pinwheels are loaded with freshness from a combination of cilantro and scallions. We like to add a hearty handful of both cilantro and thinly sliced scallions (sliced the long way into strips). If you don’t like cilantro you can substitute with parsley.  


For crisp crunch, we add a combination of thinly sliced bell pepper and jicama.  Use any color of bell pepper you like or have on hand. Look for jicama in the produce section. It’s a large round vegetable with a rough brown skin. Before slicing it, be sure to remove the skin using a vegetable peeler.

large white plate filled with small mexican roll ups filled with veggies, herbs and chicken

How to Make 

The process of making these pinwheels truly could not be easier. You’re essentially making a wrap then slicing it into bite-sized pieces. 

  1. Cover the tortillas evenly with cheese and bake just until the cheese has melted. 
  2. Mix together the sour cream, chipotles and cumin, then add the chicken and toss to coat. 
  3. Start assembling the pinwheels by arranging the ingredients in strips, starting on the edge closest to you and working away from you.
  4. Arrange some cilantro leaves along the bottom edge of the tortilla (the side closest to you.) Spoon the chicken mixture onto the tortilla, above the cilantro followed by the jicama, bell pepper and scallions. 
  5. Tightly roll the tortilla up, away from you, into a very tight wrap. Set the roll, seam side down and repeat with remaining tortillas and fillings. 
  6. Slice the wraps into individual rolls (about 6 per wrap). Then make the lime crema by combining the remaining sour cream with some lime juice, zest, salt and pepper. 

Test Kitchen Tips

  • You can make these wraps up to 1 day ahead of time. After assembling and rolling, wrap the roll tightly in plastic and refrigerate. When ready to serve, unwrap and slice into individual rolls. We do not recommend making these more than 1 day ahead of time—any longer and the tortillas will start to become soggy and the vegetables won’t be as crisp. 
  • For some added heat, try adding minced jalapeño to Serrano to the chicken mixture. 


  • Make these vegetarian by skipping the chicken and adding crispy tofu or additional veggies.
  • Swap the chipotles out in favor of taco seasoning and taco sauce.
  • Add slices of avocado for an added creamy bite.
  • Add crumbled Cotija or additional shredded cheese to the chicken mixture for more cheesiness.
  • Instead of serving these with the lime crema, serve them with our Roasted Tomatillo Salsa or Chipotle Tomato Salsa.

More Healthy Appetizers to Try

  • Another filling and savory appetizer to try is our Stuffed Mushrooms. They’re stuffed with a creamy lentil filling and topped off with crispy breadcrumbs.
  • Our Smoked Trout Dip and Smoked Salmon Dip are both fan-favorites as well. Creamy, flavorful and refreshing.
  • Our Korean Nachos are both stunning and satisfying—perfect for game day or happy hour.
  • In keeping with the roll theme, try our fresh Spring Rolls which can be made with shrimp or kept vegetarian.

Mexican Pinwheels

5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 5 minutes
Assembly Time 10 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Yield 8 people
Category Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine Mexican/ American


A refreshing and healthy appetizer for any and all occasions. Filled with crisp veggies, creamy shredded chicken and loads of herbs, these Mexican Pinwheels are a welcome addition to any appetizer spread.


  • 4 burrito-style flour tortillas
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • 1 cup sour cream, divided
  • 2 chipotles in adobo, minced + 1 tablespoon adobo sauce
  • ¾ teaspoon ground cumin
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 1 cup shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 3 scallions, cut lengthwise into thin strips
  • 1 cup julienned jicama
  • 1 red bell pepper, julienned
  • 1 lime, zested and juiced


  • Heat oven to 300ºF (148ºC) with racks set in upper and lower thirds.
  • Arrange tortillas on two baking sheets.
  • Sprinkle ¼ cup mozzarella evenly over each tortilla. Bake until cheese has melted but not started to brown, about 3 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, combine ½ cup sour cream, 2 minced chipotles, 1 tablespoon adobo sauce, ¾ teaspoon cumin and ¼ teaspoon salt. Add 1 cup shredded chicken and ¼ cup chopped cilantro; mix to combine.
  • Working with one tortilla at a time, arrange ¼ cup cilantro leaves along bottom edge (closest to you). Spoon ¼ cup chicken mixture on tortilla above cilantro, spreading it edge to edge. Continue layering up tortilla with jicama, bell pepper and scallions. Working with edge closest to you, tightly roll tortilla, like a cinnamon roll, away from you, into a roll. Arrange seam-side down and let rest 5 minutes, (to make these ahead of time, wrap each roll tightly in plastic and chill for up to 2 days) repeat with remaining tortillas and fillings.
  • For lime crema, combine remaining ½ cup sour cream, 1 tablespoon lime juice and 1 teaspoon lime zest in a small bowl; season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Trim ends of each roll, then cut into 6 or 7 pieces.
  • Serve pinwheels with lime crema.




You can assemble these up to 1 day ahead of time. We don’t recommend making them any further in advance. After assembling and rolling, wrap the roll tightly in plastic and refrigerate. When ready to serve, unwrap and slice into individual rolls. 


Serving: 4piecesCalories: 200kcalCarbohydrates: 18gProtein: 10gFat: 10gSaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 28mgSodium: 361mgFiber: 2.5gSugar: 1g
Like this? Leave a comment below!I love hearing from you and I want to hear how it went with this recipe! Leave a comment and rating below, then share on social media @zestfulkitchen and #zestfulkitchen!
large white plate filled with small mexican roll ups filled with veggies, herbs and chicken

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About The Author

Lauren Grant is a professional culinary food scientist, food writer, recipe developer, and food photographer. Lauren is a previous magazine editor and test kitchen developer and has had work published in major national publications including Diabetic Living Magazine, Midwest Living Magazine, Cuisine at Home Magazine,,, and more.

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