Beef and Bean Burritos

A plate of tortillas, a block of cheese, and an onion with salt and pepper shakers, a can of tomato sauce, a can of beans, and a bag of ground meat behind the plate
On the path to good Mexican food | Photo by Elizabeth Layman

The word “burrito” means little donkey in Spanish. It’s been said that the food’s name comes from the similarity it has to the bedrolls and packs that donkeys carry. Like a little donkey, burritos can carry a wide variety of things–everything from meat and beans to cheese and vegetables, making them a trustworthy, surefooted meal.

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 6


2 pounds ground beef
1/2 onion, chopped
1 can (7 ounce) Mexican tomato sauce or enchilada sauce
1 can (28 ounce) refried beans
3/4 cups grated cheddar cheese
12 burrito-sized flour tortillas
Salt and pepper to taste
Optional spices: cumin, oregano, chili powder, garlic powder


1. In a medium skillet, brown the ground beef and cook the chopped onion for 5-10 minutes. Season to taste.
2. Pour in the tomato sauce or enchilada sauce and simmer over low heat. Add a splash of water if the mixture gets too dry.
3. Heat the refried beans in a saucepan and add the cheese. Stir until the cheese has melted into the beans. Keep this mixture warm.
4. Heat the tortillas in the microwave for one minute. Cover them with a damp paper towel if you’re worried about them drying out as they heat.
5. Spread a small amount of beans on each tortilla. Add meat. Fold over the ends and then roll each one up.
6. Optional: Place two burritos on a microwave-safe plate. Drizzle extra sauce over the top and sprinkle with more grated cheddar cheese. Microwave for one minute, or until the cheese is melted and burritos are very hot. Serve immediately.

Good to know:

You can also fill your burritos with other ingredients such as rice, sour cream, guacamole, salsa, lettuce, green chilies, and pico de gallo.


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