What Are the Different Types of Burrito Ingredients?

B. Miller

There are a number of different ways to make burritos according to taste preferences, often just by using ingredients that are on hand. Usually, they contain a spicy mixture of a type of meat such as beef or chicken, rice or beans, and vegetables such as peppers and onions. They are generally flavored with salsa, cumin, or red pepper. All of these ingredients are then wrapped up into a flour or corn tortilla and served hot, sometimes topped with melted cheese. These are just the most common burrito ingredients, however; there are plenty of other ways to prepare a burrito according to personal preference.

Burrito ingredients include beef, cheese, beans, and vegetables.
Burrito ingredients include beef, cheese, beans, and vegetables.

The first burrito ingredients are the outer shells. These are soft flour or corn tortillas. Flour tortillas are the most common, usually made with white flour, although they can be made with wheat flour to be made a bit healthier. These can be purchased in stores or homemade.

Guacamole is a common condiment served with a burrito.
Guacamole is a common condiment served with a burrito.

Some type of meat is usually one of the most common burrito ingredients, usually a variety of ground or shredded meat. Beef, chicken, and even ground turkey are common burrito ingredients, though shredded chicken or shredded steak may be used as well. Occasionally, seafood, such as shrimp or crab may be included for a more exotic dish. The meat is generally sauteed in a pan with seasonings and spices before going into the burrito. For people who prefer not to eat meat in their diets, alternatives include refried or whole beans, as well as tofu.

White flour tortillas are commonly used to make burritos.
White flour tortillas are commonly used to make burritos.

Many people add beans to their burrito mixtures anyway, in addition to the meat. Some will also add rice to make it extra filling; again, brown or white rice will do. This entire mixture is mixed together and thoroughly cooked in a pan, usually with spices such as red pepper, cumin, or cilantro. Fresh salsa added to the mixture will give it a great flavor as well. As a finishing touch to the mixture, vegetables such as hot peppers, onions, or olives can all be added. Though this is somewhat less common, it can give the burritos a unique flavor.

All of the burrito ingredients are then spooned into the tortillas, and often topped with cheese before being rolled up and baked for a few minutes. Burritos may then be served with condiments such as sour cream or guacamole, as well as additional fresh salsa, to complete the recipe. There are plenty of different options for burrito ingredients, however, and they are easy to experiment with and customize. Some people even like to make breakfast burritos, for example, using scrambled eggs, breakfast meat, and cheese.

A gourmet burrito may feature free-range chicken grilled with spices.
A gourmet burrito may feature free-range chicken grilled with spices.

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Discussion Comments


I have a friend who loves hot food and he always puts this habanero relish on his burritos, if the restaurant has it available. I like spicy food, but that habanero is just too much for me, for sure. I don't want to eat anything that makes the inside of my nose burn, along with everything else!

Burritos are good, but I think they're way more "Tex" than they are "Mex" in origin. I may be wrong. They're good, though. I especially like them grilled in their tortilla. That adds a really good flavor. I also love to add homemade guacamole to them when it's available.


I really like a meat combination called pastor on my burritos. It's chicken and beef marinated in adobo sauce. It's really good. I also like pico de gallo on my burritos, along with shredded lettuce and white cheese.

A local Mexican place has this jalapeno ranch sauce they use on their burritos and it really adds a lot of flavor and zing to the burrito. I prefer smaller burritos because the tortilla can be too much bread with the toppings, and you don't get to taste all the good stuff on the burrito as much. In fact, I'm apt to just eat the filling out of the tortilla, since the filling is the best part.

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