Sara enjoys experimenting with casseroles, and she loves Mexican food. Sometimes, she combines the two.
Easy Chicken Burritos
I wanted to make burritos at home, and I was looking for another recipe. After splicing together several recipes and adding my own touches, I came up with this tasty oven-baked dish. Here's how to make these messy, filling, cheesy, and delicious burritos.
This recipe is surprisingly easy, and it requires only a handful of ingredients. There's not much preparation involved, either, so you'll have dinner on the table in about 30 minutes or so. Of course, you can always do the prep work the night before, and then you can simply pop it into the oven on a busy weeknight.
I like to include bonus recipes that are relevant, or similar to the featured dish, and this article is no exception. You'll find an easy recipe for making your own enchilada sauce, should you wish to use fresh instead of canned. Also, you may have some leftover ingredients after assembling your burritos, so I've included a simple how-to on making your own chalupas.
- 1 1/2 pounds easy slow cooker shredded chicken in salsa
- 6 large (12 inch) flour tortillas
- 1 (20 ounce) can enchilada sauce
- 1 (16 ounce) can fat-free refried beans
- 2 cups low-fat sharp cheddar cheese
- 4 scallions, chopped
- 1/2 cup chopped, fresh cilantro
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Coat the baking dish with oil or cooking spray. Pour about 1/4 can of enchilada sauce into the bottom of the baking dish. It should be just enough to coat the bottom of the pan.
- Spread beans on tortillas. Fill tortillas with shredded chicken mixture. Fold tortillas, and place them folded side down into the baking dish. Pour remaining enchilada sauce over burritos. Top with cheese, cilantro, and scallions.
- Cover baking dish with aluminum foil. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove foil, and bake for an additional 5 to 8 minutes.
Pyrex Baking Dishes
- These seven ingredients are essential for me but, if you are on a tight budget, or if you just want to make this as basic as possible, omit the scallions, cilantro, and refried beans.
- I usually stuff these so full, I have to use a 13"X9" baking dish for 4 of the burritos, and the other 2 go into a 9"X9" square baking dish. However, there is no need to do this, if you don't want to prepare that much food at one time. You can buy smaller tortillas, or don't stuff the 12" flour tortillas so full. Any meat mixture you have leftover can be frozen for up to six months or refrigerated and used in another Tex-Mex dish later in the week.
Filling and Topping Ideas
When filling the burritos, I like to sneak in some fresh spinach leaves (stems removed) and diced tomatoes to add more nutrients. Cooked rice may be added, as well. Or, if you want to replace the refried beans, you could add black beans. (Or black beans and rice, if you feel like making some.)
Topping the cooked burritos with Frank's Original Red Hot Sauce, diced tomatoes, sliced black olives, and shredded lettuce is a nice touch. However, if you don't have these ingredients on hand, or if it's been a long day and you just don't feel like going to the trouble of preparing more ingredients, the burritos taste just fine without the extras.
My suggestions for sides include tortilla chips, Frank's Red Hot Sauce, red or green salsa, lite sour cream, extra cheese, sliced avocado or guacamole, and some sort of rice (black beans and rice, red beans and rice, Spanish rice, or plain). Again, it depends on what you have available and how much effort you feel like putting into the meal. Personally, I can't do without the sour cream and some tortilla chips for something crunchy. You might want to go crazy with the sides and toppings if you are having guests over, or prepare a more basic version to feed your family on a hectic weeknight.
If you don't have the time or energy to make your own, canned enchilada sauce works just fine. Here's a recipe for an easy homemade version, if you prefer using fresh ingredients. For the chocolate, I used three blocks of a Dove dark chocolate bar.
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Ready in: 20 minutes
Yield: Enough for 6 giant burritos
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 2 ounces diced green chiles
- 1/4 cup chili powder
- 1/2 cup vegetable broth
- 1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- A little bit of chocolate (optional)
- Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and chili powder, and whisk constantly for 3 or 4 minutes.
- Gradually stir in the rest of the ingredients, starting with the liquids. When everything is well blended, add the chiles and chocolate.
- Reduce heat to low, stirring occasionally for 10 minutes.
Bonus Recipe: Chalupas
If you used my slow cooker shredded chicken in salsa recipe, you'll have some shredded chicken leftover after you've made your burritos. One suggestion is to use it to make nachos on tortilla chips. Or, using soft corn tortillas, you can make chalupas.
- Canola (or vegetable) oil
- Leftover shredded chicken
- 6 to 10 (depending on the amount of leftover chicken) corn tortillas
- Toppings of your choice (I used low fat refried beans, leftover shredded chicken, Frank's Red Hot Sauce, shredded cheddar cheese, fresh spinach, diced tomatoes, and sour cream)
- Heat about 2 tablespoons of oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Heat tortillas for about 1 minute on each side. The goal is to make them crispy so that they no longer fall apart when you bend them. Keep adding more oil as necessary.
- Cool the tortillas on a baking sheet lined with paper towels for a couple of minutes; the paper towels will absorb some excess oil.
- Next, top the tortillas with the leftover shredded chicken and other toppings to suit your taste.
Note: I find it easiest to eat these chalupas by folding them almost in half—it'll feel something like a cross between a taco and a large piece of pizza. They are very messy to eat but worth it.
© 2011 Sara Krentz