Love Greek food? Love Mexican food too? You’re in luck with these delicious crispy halloumi tacos with an easy pineapple mango salsa. The contrast of sweet and salty flavours could be a talking point when you’re next entertaining, or serve them for a quick lunch at home.
Why halloumi tacos?
Fusion food is everywhere, but have you ever come across Greek-Mex?
I’ve already dabbled in it with a couple of other recipes. These Greek quesadillas were one of my first popular recipes. Greek nachos are a fun and tasty twist on loaded nachos or a Greek salad – take your pick!
Halloumi cheese might already be quite familiar to you. If it isn’t, try these legendary halloumi fries for an introduction to it that will blow your socks off.
If you do try them, you’ll understand quickly how halloumi is suited to tacos. It’s a little like mozzarella, but saltier. Because it’s firmer as well, it doesn’t melt as it cooks. It can also get a wonderful crispy crust.
These are simple but colourful and all-round amazing Greek-Mex tacos. You fry slices of halloumi and then wrap them in slightly crispy (if you like) tortillas with avocado, a tomato, pineapple and mango salsa and a sweet chili and Greek yoghurt sauce.
About the ingredients
The most important thing to say is that the ingredients amounts are not that important. Use my suggestions as a guide, but a little more or less of everything will still make for some very delicious halloumi tacos.
The tacos: I like medium sized corn tortillas. I’m one of those picky people who stand in the aisle inspecting the ingredients because I find some tortillas are full of preservatives etc. whereas others are not. Guess which ones I look for?
The avocado: Either a perfectly ripe one for small cubes, or if it’s quite ripe there’s no harm in mashing it like a simple guacamole.
The halloumi: There might be a bit of trial and error required here to get the brand you like best. I usually go for either a real Cypriot or Cypriot style halloumi cheese. One supermarket own brand I tried was a bit dry, but not disastrously so!
The salsa: I have a little trick to make the salsa very very easy. Use a can of pineapple chunks (not rings) and a can or snack tub of chopped mango. All you have to do is drain the juice (and drink it!) and dump the fruit into the salsa bowl.
The yoghurt sauce: All I do to make this is mix equal parts of Greek yoghurt and sweet chili sauce. Any plain yoghurt will do, however.
Chili and herbs: Adding a finely chopped red chili adds more colour and a hit of spice. A big handful of fresh coriander is the icing on the cake. If you don’t care for coriander, fresh basil or even parsley would work instead.
Pan fry vs shallow fry vs air fry
You can cook halloumi in several different ways. All are delicious, and I tend to cook it in different ways depending on what the recipe is.
For these tacos, I prefer to air fry the halloumi because it’s the easiest and cleanest way. To cook halloumi in your air fryer, just lightly spray with olive oil on both sides, then cook for around 5 minutes on each side until golden and crispy. Meanwhile, make the quick pineapple mango salsa and sweet chili yogurt sauce.
The end result is a lovely crispy fried halloumi – again a perfect contrast to the tangy salsa and sauce and the lightly crispy corn tortillas.
If you don’t have an air fryer, I’d recommend just pan frying your halloumi in a little olive oil on each side until lightly crispy. Or you can pull out all the stops and shallow fry your halloumi. Roll the halloumi in a little flour before frying for the crispiest, most delicious halloumi you’ve ever tried.
How to assemble your tacos
The best way to make these is to get all your components ready to go, then assemble the tacos at the last minute.
If you’re sneaky you can pop your halloumi in the air fryer (I usually brush it with olive oil first) and make the salsa and sauce while it’s cooking. This is the most hands-off way of cooking the cheese.
If you’re cooking the halloumi on the stovetop, it’s best to make the toppings first, then cook the halloumi so you can give it your full attention.
I usually start by cooking my tortillas in a dry frying pan for a couple of minutes on each side until a little golden and crisp.
This is how I assemble my tacos, but there are no real rules. Just pile everything on if you like!
- crispy bites of halloumi
- salsa with fresh herbs
- avocado cubes
How and when to serve them
- A delicious quick lunch or snack.
- Party appetizers.
- For a bigger meal, why not serve them with this lemony Mediterranean rice with chickpeas? You can make it either on the stovetop or in your pressure cooker/instant pot if you have one.
These are incredible exactly as they are. However:
- If you want to keep things super super easy, you can make the salsa even simpler. Use either pineapple OR mango rather than both. If you don’t happen to have a ripe avocado, no biggie either. The tacos will still be delicious without avocado.
- No pineapple or mango? Use this 10 minute fresh tomato salsa recipe instead.
- Replace the halloumi with feta cheese (uncooked) or even bites of fish, chicken or steak. Even fish fingers would be yummy!
- Here’s the wild card option. You can easily make these vegan by replacing the halloumi with tofu. Skip the yogurt and drizzle with just the sweet chili sauce or skip this part altogether.
- Make a salad bowl instead of tacos using all the same ingredients. You might like to include some rice, quinoa or pasta. Or just serve your salad with a few tortilla chips for dipping into the salsa.
Pro tip: Leftover salsa? Serve with some grilled or air fried chicken, steak or fish
In both Australia and the UK, halloumi is widely available in supermarkets. In the USA, it’s becoming easier to find. Try Walmart, Trader Joe’s or even Amazon!
While there’s no definitive answer to this question, I prefer to use a traditional Cypriot or Cypriot style halloumi cheese for the best results. They’re usually sold in a ‘log-shaped’ packet and there’s a bit of salty brine inside to keep the cheese fresh. I find that supermarket own brand versions can be a bit hit and miss. If there are several choices, you’ll probably need to experiment a bit to find the brand you like best.
I usually go for small to medium sized corn tortillas. If you can get hold of some handmade ones or make your own that would be fantastic. Otherwise check the back of the packet. I always do this to find the ones with the least amount of ingredients in. The more natural the better!
More recipes for halloumi lovers
- Did I mention how addictive these crispy halloumi fries or halloumi bites are? Once tried, never forgotten!
- Imagine those same crispy halloumi bites… in a taco! You have to try these halloumi tacos with pineapple mango salsa.
- These crowd pleasing crispy halloumi burgers are ready in just 15 minutes.
- This one pan Greek couscous with halloumi is another example of how halloumi can be the shining star of an easy vegetarian meal.
- And finally… try this minty halloumi and sundried tomato salad for a different kind of halloumi salad.
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Halloumi Tacos with Pineapple Mango Salsa
Equipment (affiliate links)
Ingredients (UK/Australia? Click below for grams/ml)
For the salsa and sauce
- ⅔ cup tomatoes chopped finely (about 5 ounces cherry tomatoes or equivalent in larger tomatoes)
- ½ cup pineapple chopped (I use a can of ready chopped pineapple in juice, juice drained)
- ½ cup mango chopped (I use a snack container of chopped mango in juice, juice drained)
- ¼ small onion chopped
- 1 red chili finely chopped
- 1 handful fresh coriander (US cilantro) chopped
- 2 tablespoons Greek yoghurt or sour cream if you prefer
- 2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce
The rest of the ingredients
- 8 corn tortillas medium
- 1 avocado cubed (or mashed if very ripe)
- 6 ounces halloumi cheese 1 'log' or block (usually around 180 grams)
- a little olive oil for brushing
- 1 lime for squeezing over at the end
- Mix all of the salsa ingredients together and set aside. Also mix the Greek yoghurt and sweet chili sauce together and set that aside.
- Slice the halloumi into roughly 1cm-thick slices or cubes, and brush lightly on each side with a little olive oil.
- Heat up a frying pan and fry the halloumi for a few minutes on each side until golden and a little crispy. Alternatively, air fry at 375F / 190C for 4 to 6 minutes on each side.
- Heat the tortillas in a dry frying pan until warmed through and a little crisp.
- Assemble your tacos. Start with 4 or 5 halloumi bites, then top with the salsa and avocado. Finally, drizzle over some Greek yoghurt chili sauce.
- Fold over and serve with a lime segment for squeezing over everything. Eat immediately.