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Chili Cheese Burritos make the quick meal option or ultimate midnight snack. Roll up leftover chili, rice, and cheese in a giant flour tortilla, then brown in a skillet. Devour immediately for freeze for later!
While not authentic Mexican faire, Chili Cheese Burritos are a tasty way to enjoy the flavors of the region while putting your leftovers to spectacular use.
Cooked chili and rice are simple, delicious dishes to keep in the freezer so you can whip up a batch of these burritos anytime. Add cheese, cilantro, and your favorite salsa for a quick, hearty meal.
It reminds me of something from Chipotle but with a frugal filter applied. If you made a good pot of chili (and I know you did!), you’re absolutely going to love your burritos!
Table of Contents
At a Glance: Here is a quick snapshot of what ingredients are in this recipe.
Please see the recipe card below for specific quantities.
- Chili: Any kind of leftover chili works: ground Beef Chili, Venison Chili, Turkey Chili, Slow Cooker Chili con Carne, or even Hot Dog Chili (which is designed to go on top of hot dogs, not made with hot dogs). If your chili is super watery, set it in a fine-mesh strainer over a bowl to drain for 10 minutes, pressing down lightly with the back of a spoon, to remove excess liquid.
- Rice: Use your favorite rice! I always keep bags of Baked Rice in the freezer at all times, but you can use cooked brown rice, leftover Mexican Rice, or even cooked quinoa.
- Lay a tortilla on a flat surface. Pour about ½ cup chili in the middle of the tortilla. Top with ½ cup rice.
- Add ¼ cup cheese and sprinkle with cilantro, if using. Add a sprinkle of salt, if desired.
- Fold two ends of the tortilla in, then fold the remaining two sides over to form a small packet. Please seam-side down on a plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling ingredients.
- Preheat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat the large skillet lightly with nonstick spray if desired. Heat the filled burritos on one side until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. Carefully flip and continue heating on the second side.
- Serve with salsa and sour cream if desired.
Recipe tips and variations
- Yield: This recipe makes 4 (10-inch) burritos, but you can easily double or triple the recipe depending on how many leftovers you have.
- Storage: Store extra burritos wrapped in aluminum foil or covered in the fridge for up to 4 days.
- Make ahead: Since this recipe uses mostly leftovers, you’re probably already ahead of the game if you have cooked chili and rice on hand (or in your freezer).
- Freezer: Once you assemble the burritos, roll each one up in a square of waxed paper and slide it into a large freezer bag or freezer container. Label, date, and freeze for up to 3 months. To reheat, pop a frozen burrito in the microwave on a microwave safe plate, waxed paper and all, and cook on high for 3 minutes. Every microwave is a little different, so you may need more or less time depending on the size of your burrito.
- Vegetarian chili burritos: Use Sweet Potato Chili with Black Beans as a basis for your next veggie burrito. Add vegan refried beans and some fresh, diced onions, and leave out the cheese for a tasty vegan burrito.
- Fajita veggie burrito: Instead of rice, add some roasted onions and vegetables or Fajita Veggies to the burrito and roll it up.
- Chili cheese breakfast burritos: Add scrambled eggs to the burrito for extra protein to stay full all morning long. Or, add some chili spiced with cayenne pepper or chili powder to your next Egg Burrito.
Frequently Asked Questions
Unfortunately, the fast food Taco Bell chili cheese burrito (formerly known as a chilito in the 1990s) is no longer available at most locations. It was made with ground beef mixed with a chili sauce. The beef mixture was placed in the center of the warmed flour tortilla with shredded cheese.
Chili Cheese Burritos
- Lay a tortilla on a flat surface. Arrange about ½ cup chili in the middle of the tortilla. Top with ½ cup rice and ¼ cup cheese. Sprinkle with cilantro if desired.
- Fold two sides of the burrito in, then fold the remaining two sides over to form a small packet. Please seam-side down on a plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas and filling ingredients.
- Preheat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat lightly with nonstick spray if desired. Heat the filled burritos on one side until golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes.
- Carefully flip and continue heating on the second side. Serve with salsa and sour cream if desired.
- Chili: If your chili is super watery, set it in a fine-mesh strainer over a bowl for 10 minutes, pressing down lightly with the back of a spoon, to remove excess liquid.
- Rice: Any kind of leftover rice works. I always keeps bag of Baked Rice in the freezer at all times, but you can use cooked brown rice, leftover Mexican Rice, or even cooked quinoa.
Meggan Hill is a classically-trained chef and professional writer. Her meticulously-tested recipes and detailed tutorials bring confidence and success to home cooks everywhere. Meggan has been featured on NPR, HuffPost, FoxNews, LA Times, and more.