Whenever I’m looking to make some healthy meals on a budget, I fill my freezer with these burritos and it does the trick. They’re delicious, packed with flavor, cheap to make, and relatively healthy. My favorite way to eat these is with a side of guacamole or avocado, sour cream, and Tapatío hot sauce.
How Much Do They Cost To Make?
At the time of this writing, spices aside, it costs around $10 worth of ingredients to make about twenty burritos. This ultimately comes out to around $.32-52 cents per burrito depending on whether you add cheese.
What Is A Bean Burrito Made of?
Bean burritos are a common food you can find in North America. They are made with a flour tortilla filled with either cooked pinto or black beans, rice, and cheese, and served with condiments such as hot sauce, salsa, sour cream, and cheese or a cheese sauce. The beans are generally seasoned with herbs and spices and cooked in broth to add flavor, and the rice is often seasoned with tomato and chicken broth. Bean burritos can often be found at convenience stores, gas stations, grocery stores, certain fast food restaurants like Taco Bell or Del Taco, and even more authentic Mexican restaurants.
This bean burrito recipe uses rice from my Mexican Rice recipe which is seasoned with cumin and garlic salt, diced onion, tomato puree, a squeeze of lime, and some fresh chopped cilantro. The black beans are from my Instant Pot Black Beans recipe which is seasoned with cumin, coriander, oregano, black pepper, chopped onion, garlic, and a little optional Taco Seasoning for extra flavor. The beans are then cooked in vegetable broth. The Nacho Cheese Sauce is made using evaporated milk and cheddar cheese with some jalapeno, and an extra sprinkle of cheddar cheese is added for some extra cheesy goodness.
Are Bean Burritos Healthy?
Bean burritos can be very healthy. They contain rice and beans, which according to Healthline, includes all nine essential amino acids your body needs. This means that, together, they are a complete protein and can be very healthy. Beans are naturally a low-calorie food and also contain a fair amount of fiber, which can leave you feeling fuller and more satisfied for longer.
How Much Should I Fill A Burrito?
For meal-sized burritos, you should use extra-large burrito tortillas and roughly one to one and a half cups of filling per burrito. For snack-sized burritos, use large burrito tortillas and fill them with half a cup to a full cup of filling.
This bean burrito recipe makes around twenty snack-sized burritos. The burritos are filled with about a quarter cup of cooked Mexican rice, a quarter cup of black beans, a heaping teaspoonful of nacho cheese sauce, and a sprinkle of about a tablespoon of shredded cheddar cheese.
How Do You Wrap A Bean Burrito?
To wrap a burrito, tortillas are often heated and the filling is placed horizontally about a third of the way in on the tortilla. The side flaps are folded over the food, then the shortest end of the tortilla is snugly folded over the filling. The wrapped filling is then rolled toward the end of the tortilla and the tortilla is sealed. To seal the tortilla, you can lightly spray the end flap of the tortilla with water just before you finish rolling it. This helps to stick the flap to the tortilla, especially if you plan to crisp the sides of the burrito in a hot pan.
To spray the tortilla, I just use a basic spray bottle like this one filled with water. It comes in handy in the kitchen, especially when working with dough. If I’m letting the dough rise for something like a Deep Dish Pizza I often spray the top with a little water while the dough rises so it doesn’t dry out.
The above video is simply an instructional video on how to wrap a burrito.
Do You Cook Tortillas For Burritos?
Tortillas are often cooked or steamed before adding the filling and wrapping them for burritos. This helps to make the tortillas more pliable as they are rolled into burritos. If a tortilla isn’t cooked, the corners or ends of the burrito are more likely to crack, causing holes for filling to leak out. Cooking tortillas for burritos is essential in preventing these cracks. To quickly steam a tortilla at home with just a microwave, you can wet a paper towel and place it inside the microwave. Place a single tortilla on a similar-sized plate, then cook the tortilla on high power for fifteen to twenty seconds. The water will steam off the paper towel as the microwave cooks which will steam the tortilla and warm it up enough to make it pliable for wrapping into a burrito.
How Do You Seal A Burrito In A Pan?
Sealing a burrito involves two steps. While wrapping a burrito, you should lightly spray the end flap of the tortilla with a little water, then press down to seal it. To finish the seal, heat a pan on the stove over high heat for at least a minute and a half to get it hot, then place the burrito in the pan with the sealed side down. After twenty to forty-five seconds, you can flip the burrito and it will be sealed with a nice crispy, golden brown, and flaky crust. Then do the same for the other side.
If the burrito has a tear in the side exposing the filling, you can sprinkle a little cheese over the hole and then place that side of the burrito on a hot pan and sear it until it crisps about thirty to forty-five seconds. The cheese will seal the hole and prevent any filling from leaking out while adding great flavor.
Can Bean Burritos Be Made Vegan?
Absolutely. To make these bean burritos into vegan burritos, simply omit the cheese and the cheese sauce, then use your favorite vegan cheeses like Daiya or Miyoko cheese in place of it, or none at all if you prefer. However, if you want to make your own vegan cheese sauce that would add a great flavor to these burritos, I recommend trying this popular Vegan Cheese Sauce over at Shane & Simple.
Are Bean Burritos High In Sodium?
It’s difficult to say because sodium levels can fluctuate from brand to brand for ingredients. If you’re concerned about sodium I recommend using low-sodium vegetable broth or water in the Black Beans Recipe and omitting the salt, replacing the garlic salt for garlic powder in the Mexican Rice Recipe, and using low-sodium tortillas. As always, talk to your doctor or a registered dietician for advice.
How To Make Bean Burritos
Wet a paper towel and place it somewhere in the microwave. It can just be crumpled in a ball in the corner or next to the plate. Then place a single large burrito tortilla on a plate in the microwave and microwave on high for 18-20 seconds. This will steam and heat the tortilla just enough to make it pliable so we can add filling and roll it into a burrito.
Using a serving spoon, spoon approximately a quarter cup of rice about a third of the way in on the tortilla, leaving a one-inch flap on either side
Add a teaspoonful of melted queso nacho cheese over the rice, then sprinkle approximately a tablespoon or two of cheese on top of the rice.
Fill a gallon ziplock baggie with the cooked black beans and snip a corner hole about the length of a nickel. Squeeze the bag, piping about a quarter cup of beans alongside the rice.
Alternatively, use a spoon to spoon a quarter cup of beans into the burrito along the length of the rice.
Fold the side tortilla flaps over the ends of the filling, using your fingers to press the tortilla down above and below the filling. This makes it easier to roll the bottom flap of the tortilla over the filling.
Fold the bottom tortilla flap over the filling, using your fingers to sort of gently pull the burrito filling part towards you to make it all snug inside the tortilla, then roll the burrito halfway to the end. Brush or spray the end of the flap lightly with a little water, then finish the roll, gently pressing down on the burrito to seal it.
In the photo above, you can see a nicely wrapped and sealed bean burrito, ready for heating or freezing.
Using a 13 x 18″ sheet pan lined with a Silpat or parchment paper, place the burritos in rows being careful not to let them touch each other or the metal pan. You may need to use two sheet pans.
Once the sheet pans are full, stack them in the freezer and freeze them for about two hours or until the burrito’s tortillas are frozen hard. Then you can transfer them to gallon freezer-baggies for long-term storage and return them to the freezer.
Making sure they don’t touch and pre-freezing the burritos is done to make sure they don’t freeze together. If they freeze together, breaking them apart will cause tears in the tortillas and allow the filling to leak out. Following the above steps will help to prevent that.
Thawing And Heating The Burritos
If you wanted, you could eat the burritos plainly when they’re thawed. Everything inside is already cooked, so it won’t harm you to do so as long as you eat them within a few days of thawing. However, if you want them to taste great and be crispy and hot and the cheese melty, follow the remaining steps for thawing and reheating.
How To Thaw Burritos
- To thaw the burritos, leave as many as you plan to eat to thaw in the refrigerator overnight inside a quart baggie. This will fully thaw the burrito overnight while you sleep, and they will be ready to cook and enjoy as a snack the next day. This is a great thing to do in advance, especially if you have kids for when they get home from school. Then when you or they get home, you can simply microwave the burrito to heat it.
- To quickly thaw a burrito from frozen, place a burrito on a plate and use the quick-defrost option on your microwave. This should thaw the burritos sufficiently for cooking.
How To Cook The Burritos
- Microwave the burritos for a minute and twelve seconds to a minute and a half, depending on the wattage of your microwave. The burrito will be fully heated when you can see the tortilla begins to puff.
- For a crispy tortilla with appealing golden-brown griddle marks, heat a non-stick pan on high while microwaving the burrito. After the burrito is microwaved, place the burrito seal-side-down on the hot pan, and cook for 30 seconds to a minute. After sufficiently browned, flip the burrito and do the other side.
Toppings For Burritos
- Hot Sauce
- Sour Cream
- Nacho Cheese Sauce
- Lime Juice
- Enchilada Sauce
- Guacamole Salsa
- Fresh Corn
The above list is just to give you some delicious ideas, but my favorite way to enjoy these burritos is with a drizzle of Tapatio hot sauce and a small dollop of sour cream with each bite. I’ve tried all the main hot sauces with them, and I love some Cholula and Tabasco for other things, but Tapatio is the way to go for these. They’re also really good with Herdez’s Chipotle Salsa Cremosa.
A finished Black Bean, Rice, & Cheese burrito cut in half to show the filling.
At A Minimum, You’ll Need:
A pan to add griddle marks to the burritos. This is one that I use pretty often. It’s a nice pan for the price, and I’ve had it for almost a year now. It has a great non-stick coating that hasn’t failed me yet. My last pan, I was tossing some fried rice and the handle fell off mid-swing, sending fried rice flying all over the kitchen. This one hasn’t done that yet, so I recommend it.
Kitchen utensils like the serving spoons included in this set. This set is actually really nice for the price, you get pretty much everything you could need and it comes in a bunch of different colors.
A set of sheet pans to freeze the burritos on before storing them in gallon-sized freezer bags.
A set of silicone sheet pan liners or parchment paper to line the sheet pans so the burritos don’t stick to the metal. Silpat brand silicone pan liners are used widely in the culinary and baking industries. It’s what I use. They aren’t your standard silicone mat, Silpat has glass threads woven throughout the silicone which helps with the transfer of heat. The best way to store them is rolled up inside the cardboard core of an empty paper towel roll. That’s what I do. It’s a perfect fit.
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Black Bean Burritos Recipe
- 6 cups cooked black beans or one batch of my Black Beans recipe.
- 6 cups cooked Mexican rice or a double batch of my Mexican Rice recipe.
- 20 oz cheddar cheese sauce, or one batch of my Nacho Cheese Sauce
- 8 oz cheddar cheese block, shredded
- 20 large flour tortillas for burritos
Heat a tortilla in the microwave on a plate beside a wet paper towel for approximately 20 seconds to steam it.
Remove the tortilla from the microwave and transfer it to your work area, then spoon a quarter cup of rice, a spoonful of nacho cheese sauce (about an ounce), a few tablespoons of shredded cheese, and a quarter cup of beans.
Fold the side flaps over both sides of the filling. Using your fingers, press both flaps of the tortilla down just above and below the filling. Then, fold one of the two remaining flaps over the filling. Using the flap you just folded over the tortilla, gently pull the filling towards you to compress it and make it snug inside the burrito.
Lightly spray the last tortilla flap with water and finish the roll, gently pressing down to seal the last flap. Set aside the finished burrito on a lined 13 x 18″ baking tray.
Repeat for remaining tortillas.
Transfer the tray of burritos to the freezer for about two hours, taking care that they aren’t touching each other or the metal tray, then transfer the burritos to gallon-sized freezer baggies and store them in the freezer.
To Thaw A Burrito:
Leave them in the refrigerator overnight, or use the “Quick Defrost” option on the microwave.
To Cook The Thawed Burritos:
- Heat a non-stick pan on the stove over high heat.
- Microwave the burrito on High for about 1 minute and 30 seconds, or until it fully puffs, then transfer the cooked burrito to the hot pan.
- Cook each side on the hot pan for 30 seconds to a minute for nice griddle marks.
- Allow a few minutes to cool, then serve and enjoy!
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