Crispy Southwestern Quinoa and Chick’n Burritos

It’s not often that I tell you that you really have to try a recipe…but you really have to try this one.   It reminds me a bit of something you would get at a restaurant and later find out that it has 800 calories and 30 grams of fat.  In fact, it was so yummy I actually got nervous when calculating the nutritional information.  (Whew, thank goodness it only has 341 calories – 381 if you cook in oil.) It was such a hit at our house that I’ve already got it on next weeks menu.

The inspiration for this recipe came from this recipe which I found on Pinterest.  (Who else is completely obsessed with Pinterest?)

Crispy Southwestern Quinoa and Chick’n Burritos

Rating: 51

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: 6

Serving Size: 1 burrito

Calories per serving: 341/381 if cooked in oil

Fat per serving: 11.8/16.3 if cooked in oil

Crispy Southwestern Quinoa and Chick’n Burritos

This recipe is seriously over the top and has received rave reviews, Facebook comments, and is without a doubt my top Pinterest Pinned Post. Recipe by Cooking Quinoa.


  • 1 cup cooked Gardein Chick’n Scaloppini (or Chicken of choice)
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup cooked/canned black beans
  • 1 cup organic frozen corn, thawed
  • 1 cup pepper jack or cheddar cheese (I used Daiya)
  • ½ cup chopped red or green bell pepper (or mixture)
  • 4 green onions, chopped
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • ½ tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon Chipotle Chili Powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup nutritional yeast (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 6 tablespoons non-dairy sour cream (optional)
  • 6 tortillas - wheat or brown rice


  1. In a large bowl combine “chicken”, quinoa, black beans, corn, cheese, red pepper, and green onion. In a small bowl combine dry spices.
  2. Toss with quinoa mixture.
  3. Add lime juice and toss well.
  4. Spread one tablespoon of sour cream on each tortilla.
  5. Top with 1/6 of mixture.
  6. Fold opposing ends in and roll. Secure with toothpicks.
  7. To cook, you can use a non stick griddle (like a Griddler)and cook over medium heat until golden brown.
  8. Alternatively, heat two tablespoons of olive oil over medium low heat.
  9. Cook until golden brown.
  10. Enjoy the sinful goodness!


Protein: 19.5

Carbohydrates: 49.6

Fiber: 15

I had originally planned on just making a version of the original with quinoa, but once I got in the kitchen I got creative and changed up the spices quite a bit. I also added corn, which I thought was a great addition. Next time I think I’ll add in a little diced avocado!

This is a fun recipe that you can adjust to your own tastes. Roasted red peppers would be nice in place of the bell pepper. You can use more or less cheese.  For those who don’t want to use sour cream, this would still be delicious without it.  If you don’t have nutritional yeast, you can easily leave it off but I do like the cheesy flavor it gives.


  • Dawn

    You have answered my prayers for a calorie friendly (and delish looking) chicken burrito! I only have one question, what size tortillas are you using? Knowing me, I'd probably buy the bigger ones just due to habit since the hubby likes when I buy the big ones for quesadillas (quote Napoleon Dynamite…"Just make yourself a quesa-dillah").

    Love your blog buy the way, a friend turned me on to quinoa over the summer.

    • Wendy Polisi

      Thanks so much! I actually use fairly big ones but I try to stick to the "Smart Wraps" which have around 110 calories. I think they are made by La Tortilla Factory. You have to be careful though, because some of their wraps use cellulose AKA wood!

  • Laura

    This looks so delish! Being from Texas this picture now has me craving this yummy dish!

    • Wendy Polisi

      Thanks! I agree – this is pure comfort food for me!

  • Kenda

    Wendy is the Gardein Chick’n Scaloppini a meat alternative? I see you show this as a Vegan meal. I am a cancer survivor and cannot eat anything that is a soy product as my cancer was estrogen positive. If this is a soy based product, can you give me a substitute suggestion, please. It sounds wonderful!! Thanks so much

    • Christi

      I've made this with Quorn which is a delicious chicken alternative and it's great!

      • Kenda

        The only problem with Quorn is that it has dehydrated egg whites as one of it's ingredients. Thanks for the suggestion Christi!

    • Wendy Polisi

      Hi Kenda! Good for you for beating cancer! Gardein does contain both soy and wheat so it is not something you want to have if you are estrogen positive. Can you have wheat? If so, I'd suggest a chicken style Seitan. Alternatively, just leave the meat off all together and add extra quinoa and black beans! It would still be yummy!

      • Kenda

        Thanks for the suggestion. I will look into the Seitan but will probably just add extra quinoa and black beans! Thanks for your recipes.

  • Marie

    Wow – Loved this! I used Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Tortillas as I am not doing any flour – White or Wheat. I also don't eat corn – but added some guacamole and salsa on top. They were absolutely Yummy – thanks again, Wendy, for another great recipe!

    • Wendy Polisi

      Marie – I will have to try that! I have some Ezekiel Sprouted Grain Tortillas in my fridge right now!

  • Hallie

    This recipe was AMAZING! I served some to my friend who hates quinoa and she loved it! That means I can get my husband to eat it when he gets home from Afghanistan! I used whole wheat tortillas and found I had alot more filling than for 6 burritos, I've barely put a dent in the bowl and I've already made 6! Thanks for this recipe, I love your emails, they have great ideas!

    • Wendy Polisi

      So glad you guys enjoyed it! Recipes like this one are perfect for those who don't think they like quinoa. I did use pretty big tortillas – but the filling lasts in the fridge for a couple of days so its a perfect make ahead dish! (And the kind you don't mind having leftovers from!) Thanks so much for reading!

  • Katie

    This is quite possibly the BEST burrito I have ever tasted in my life! I LOVE this recipe :) Definitely a keeper.

    • Wendy Polisi

      Yeah! I am so glad you enjoyed it! :)

  • Melanie

    We made these last night and LOVED them. I travelled though the US last year and was still dreaming about the Mexican food we had while there. I had to order chipotle chilli powder online (I'm in Scotland) but it was worth it! These are divine and have that authentic Mexican flavour I love. Not being Vegan we adapted the recipe accordingly and also got up this morning, mixed some of the left-overs through beaten egg and cooked this like an omelette – also delicious!

    Thanks so much for a fabulous recipe – I'll be making this for years to come! :)

  • Christine Price Brown

    How can I save this to zip list? This is the first one I'm trying to save and am having trouble finding the button.
    Thank you!

    • Vincent Polisi


      We are in the process of converting all of the recipes to Ziplist now. There are several hundred of them and it will take some time. Give me a few minutes and I will get this one setup and send you a reply when it is ready. To answer your question, in the new recipe that will replace the existing one, there will be a "Save Recipe" button top right, click it. If you don't have a Ziplist account you will be prompted to sign up for one. It's free and only takes a second and you can link it to your Facebook account for easy sign in.

      • Vincent Polisi

        OK, Ziplist is now live in all its glory on this recipe. One warning though, be sure you make extras of this recipe if you want to ensure peace in your household. This recipe absolutely rocks!

  • Marinela

    I just made these and they were so yummy and leftovers are even better :) , I can't believe the low amount of calories.
    I love your website.

    • Wendy Polisi

      Thanks so much ….I'm glad you enjoyed them! I know – I had to calculate the calories twice because I couldn't believe it.

  • gailllc

    Ezekiel makes sprouted grain tortillas? I have their sprouted grain bread, toasted, for breakfast almost everyday! Just wanted to let you know that when I make these, I'm putting them in the panini press, with the flat sides, to do the final heating step. I think that should be quick and, because we use a Mr. Misto for the oil, even less fat. AND I just ZipListed my first recipe!

    • Wendy Polisi


      Congrats on ZipListing your first recipe! :) Yep, they do make sprouted grain tortillas.  They take a little getting used to but you would probably like them if you are used to the bread.  I've been using my panini press (Griddler) for these too as I make them quite often.  Hubby still prefers them in oil, but I like them just fine in the press.

  • Cari

    WOW. I LOVE this! I made a few changes, but seriously would never have thought to put quinoa in my burritos before! I posted the version I made on my food blog… It is now our family's favorite. Thanks!!!

    • Wendy Polisi

      Cari – So glad you liked it and thanks for sharing your post! Your site is beautiful! Love the photography! :)

  • Nan in Maryland

    Even my picky guys (What? you put quinoa in this???) loved these!! I sauteed dark meat chicken seasoned with cumin, coriander, smoked paprika, turmeric, salt and pepper in olive oil to use in this recipe. Then, I added more oil to the pan for crisping. That added even more flavor to the outsides of the burritos. EVERYONE loved them! Thank you for helping me find quinoa-rich recipes for picky eaters.

    • Wendy Polisi

      Nan – LOVE to hear that you are getting your picky eaters to eat quinoa! I tend to be very sneaky with my boys food too and I don't feel a bit bad about it. I love it when they enjoy something and don't know its actually pretty good for them!

  • Kathleen Ruise

    We made the Mexican Quinoa Salad today and it was wonderful! A HUGE hit with everyone!

    The flavors were crisp and spicy and with all the beautiful colors the presentation was exciting……my daughter said I hope it tastes as good as it looks. This is her new favorite!

    Thank you for such creativity, I am looking forward to trying the Asian Salad next.

    • Wendy Polisi

      So glad to hear it Kathleen! That one is a favorite around our house too!

  • Lynn

    Wow!!! These were outstanding! I used quinoa that I had cooked in chicken broth which worked extremely well and I also substituted corn tortillas for wheat. This recipe is going in my "All Time Favorites" file and will be a frequent dinner choice in our house.

    • Wendy Polisi

      So glad you liked it! I haven't tried it with corn tortillas but you've inspired me to do so. Can't wait to try it!

  • Missy

    This was amazing! We loved it. Cut back the cilantro a bit and grilled it on the griddle! TASTY!!

    • Wendy Polisi

      So glad you liked it Missy!

  • Barbara

    This burrito is CRAZY GOOD!!!! I am addicted to it. Wendy…you have my permission to take a vacation and stop giving us new recipes to try. I want to make ALL your recipes, but I keep going back to the ones I love… and I'll NEVER get to try them all! I have never been disappointed with any your recipes that I've tried, but, seriously, this is a KEEPER. It's the first time I've used nutritional yeast, and now I crave that taste. As a vegan, my body is probably telling me what it is that I need. Many thanks!!

    • Wendy Polisi

      Thanks Barbara! You have this way of finding all of my favorites! My hubby always complains that he has to test new recipes (including those that never make it to the site) and doesn't get to enjoy the ones we love often enough.

      This is another one though that I do find the time to make! (In fact, I think I just figured out dinner for tonight!) I am with you on nutritional yeast. I love it!

  • Manuela

    These turned out absolutely fantastic. I was so happy with this, and my family adored it too. My dad kept saying "this is such an interesting and wonderful flavour!" Will definitely make this again. Thank you so much!

    • Wendy Polisi

      So glad you guys liked them!  This is a favorite around our house too. :)

      Sent from my iPad

  • pt8106

    wish the fat content was listed so I could figure the ww points

    • Wendy Polisi

      It is right at the top of the recipe!

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  • Wendy Polisi

    Glad you liked it Christi!