Monday, January 6, 2014

(Semi) Healthy "Taco Bell" Bean and Cheese Burrito Recipe

Hi Shine and Sparkle Readers!

Happy New Year!  I know we are all starting to think about being healthier at the beginning of the new year so I thought I would share a recipe that I have been loving lately.  I admit that I am totally guilty of loving simple bean and cheese burritos from Taco Bell.  Even though their beans are powdered and everything about them is probably bad for you.  So I have created this recipe that seriously tastes like a Taco Bell Bean and Cheese Burrito (TBB&CB).  Am I weird for wanting to replicate fast food at home? Let me know in the comments *wink*.

I wanted to create a recipe that was healthier but ACTUALLY tasted like a  TBB&CB for my lovely readers.  Something that would actually more healthily satisfy that craving.  Not something in a cardboard tortilla with steamed beans, a bunch of veggies, and tasting NOTHING like the original.

I also love this because it is very easy to make lots of them, wrap them in tin foil, then stick them in the freezer. So easy to grab one to take to work or have dinner in 2 minutes.  So just in case you were thinking about giving up on that New Years Resolution and cruising through the Taco Bell drive-thru, give this a try!

Squiggles thinks burritos should be made with hay, pellets, and carrots?! I disagree.  Like all my images, (such as Squiggle's hat) I'll gladly give someone credit for their image or take it down if someone throws a hissy fit.

Taco Bell Bean and Cheese Burritos:
(makes 10 burritos!)

  • 2 cans of re-fried beans (I have found that non-fat or full fat kinds that include some kind of chili work best to replicate Taco Bell flavors.  My Favorites are Trader Joes Refried Black Beans with Jalepeno Peppers or  Rosarita No-Fat Refried Beans Green Chili & Lime) 
  • 1 white onion (diced)
  • Red Hot Sauce (I find Cholula hot sauce lends itself to the Taco Bell Taste)
  • 10 Flour Tortillas (I know, whole wheat, brown rice, etc. tortillas are healthier.  But this part really makes it feel like Taco Bell, so I splurge on this part.  I find that Trader Joes classic burrito sized flour tortillas taste remarkably Taco Bell tortillas.  I have also had good success with Mission's Fat Free Flour tortillas. )
  • 1 pack Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese (you can go lite cheese to be healthier too.  I find using less sharp cheddar is more successful for me than not tasting pounds of lite cheese...)
  • 3/4 cup of water
  1.  Heat beans, water, and a dash or two of hot sauce (to taste) on the stove.  The water helps the beans have a slightly thinner consistency (like the TBB&CB).  Once boiling, turn the heat OFF then add the diced onion and remove from heat.  This will take the sharpness out but still leave the raw feel and taste that happens in the TBB&CB.
  2. Microwave each tortilla in the microwave for 10-15 seconds between 2 damp paper towels.  Do this one at a time so that each tortilla is flexible to the max!  You could heat them on the stove, but lets be real, super soft steamed tortilla is the TBB&CB way.
  3. Put tortilla on appropriately sized tin foil so it is easy to wrap after assembly (if freezing).
  4. Assemble the inside of the burrito cheese first, bean/onion mix on top of cheese (to melt cheese) then a nice layer of hot sauce to your liking.
  5. Fold in ends or tortilla, then roll.  Someone else already has cornered the market on "How to Roll a Burrito" so I will not re-invent the wheel.  Then wrap up that TBB&CB in foil.
  6. Repeat and freeze burritos in a freezer zip-lock bag and keep one for munching immediately!)
Reheating Tip:  Nuke a the frozen burrito (take it out of the foil first if you don't want to have a lightning storm in your microwave) for approximately 2 minutes (1 minute a side) wrapped in a damp paper towel.  I promise it tastes even more authentically like Taco Bell after that (how scary right?).

Health Disclaimer: 
A) Obviously you can add more onion, salsa, meat, veggies, cardboard-like health tortillas, eliminate the cheese, or grow your own beans and make re-fried beans from scratch.  But this is the best way to create something that feels like cheating on my diet but actually isn't too bad.  I mean, this recipe simply cannot be worse than powdered re-fried beans and chemical rich tortillas in the original TBB&CB.
 B) I'm not a nutritionist. if you have special dietary needs or restrictions, I do not guarantee that this is appropriate for you.  Use your common sense. Common sense is your friend.

Shine & Sparkle

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