What Is a Mexican Burrito?

Amber Eberle

A Mexican burrito is a dish which typically incorporates a variety of ingredients inside a flour tortilla, although a large corn tortilla may be used in some recipes. Typical burrito-filling ingredients include rice, beans, jalapeno peppers, salsa, and cheese. A cooked protein, such as chicken, beef, or pork, are also often included in a Mexican burrito. The filling is wrapped in a tortilla, which usually makes it possible to eat the burrito without utensils. Before this food is wrapped, other ingredients like sour cream, guacamole, or hot sauce may also be added.

Spice-rubbed roast chicken is a common burrito filling.
Spice-rubbed roast chicken is a common burrito filling.

A tortilla is one of the main components of a burrito. Most recipes call for a flour tortilla, but a large corn tortilla may also be used. For the best results, homemade tortillas should be used. If it is not possible to make these, fresh tortillas can often be purchased at Mexican markets or bakeries. Those used for burritos are usually large in size, in order to accommodate the fillings.

Carnitas are a type of burrito that use shredded pork.
Carnitas are a type of burrito that use shredded pork.

Beans and rice are staples of Mexican cuisine. Either mashed, refried beans or whole beans can be used when making a burrito. Rice may be plain or seasoned in some way. These two staples can be wrapped inside a tortilla on their own to make a basic version of a Mexican burrito. Other recipes often require the addition of cooked meat, like chicken, beef, or pork. This protein is typically well-seasoned and may be marinated before it is cooked for maximum flavor. Meats can be grilled, baked, roasted, or boiled before being included, and a Mexican burrito can be made with any combination of rice, beans, and meat — or only meat, depending on personal taste.

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Flour tortillas are most commonly used to make Mexican burritos.
Flour tortillas are most commonly used to make Mexican burritos.

While these ingredients are usually found in a Mexican burrito, a number of other foods are typically added for extra flavor. Common taste enhancers include vegetables, such as onions and tomatoes. Many recipes also call for chili peppers, such as jalapenos or habaneros, which give a burrito a spicy kick. Salsa, sour cream, and guacamole are also commonly used as fillings.

Mexican burritos consist of folded flour tortillas that can be filled with an assortment of ingredients.
Mexican burritos consist of folded flour tortillas that can be filled with an assortment of ingredients.

A properly made Mexican burrito can be large in size, and is often eaten as the main course in a meal. Burritos can easily be made at home or they may be purchased at a Mexican restaurant. The dish can be eaten on its own or may be served with side dishes, such as Mexican rice and refried beans.

A jalapeno pepper, a common ingredient in a Mexican burrito.
A jalapeno pepper, a common ingredient in a Mexican burrito.
Sour cream may be added to a Mexican burrito.
Sour cream may be added to a Mexican burrito.
Guacamole is commonly found in a Mexican burrito.
Guacamole is commonly found in a Mexican burrito.

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