Flavorful Bean and Rice Burrito Enhanced with Toppings

Quick and easy, vegan bean and rice burritos are a perfect vegetarian dinner idea. This basic recipe includes plenty of Mexican spices, is a great way to use up leftover rice, and can be customized to whatever you have on hand.

Vegetarian rice and beans cut in half and stacked on top of each other

The secret to this delicious burrito is cilantro-lime rice. Many restaurants rely on it for vegetarian burritos as well, and it’s as simple as mixing chopped cilantro and lime juice into cooked rice. You’ll gently heat the rice then wrap it into a burrito with sautéed onion, garlic, black or pinto beans, hot sauce, and a few spices. Add extra toppings such as non-dairy sour cream, homemade guacamole, salsa, and black olives if you like.

These burritos are so filling that they’re almost a complete and balanced meal on their own. If you’d like a side dish, consider elote (Mexican street corn), refried bean taquitos, or simply slice up an avocado and serve it on top of any fillings that didn’t fit in the tortillas.

Click Play to See This Vegetarian Bean and Rice Burrito Recipe Come Together

“This recipe offers twists that elevate the ordinary vegetarian burrito into something exciting. Onions, garlic and spices transform canned black beans, while lime juice and cilantro add brightness to the rice. These twists added tons of flavor. We added leftover sauteed peppers, cheese and salsa, and the results put our usual burrito joint to shame.” —Danielle Centoni

Vegetarian bean and rice burrito cut in half
  • 2 cups cooked rice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (or olive oil)
  • 1 (15-ounce) can black beans (or pinto beans), drained
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce, or to taste
  • Pinch salt, to taste, optional
  • 4 (10-inch) large tortillas
  1. Gather the ingredients.

    Ingredients gathered for rice and bean burritos
    ​The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga
  2. In a large microwave-safe bowl, toss together cooked rice and fresh chopped cilantro, and drizzle with the lime juice. Heat in the microwave or on the stove just until hot, and give it a quick stir.

    Cooked rice in a bowl with cilantro and lime juice
    ​The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga 
  3. In a separate large skillet, sauté the onion in vegetable oil or olive oil for 5 minutes, or until the onion is soft. Add the garlic and cook another minute.

    Onion and garlic sautéed in a skillet and stirred with a wooden spoon
    ​The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga
  4. Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the black beans or pinto beans, and season with the chili powder, cumin, and hot sauce, stirring to combine. You can add a bit of salt if you’d like, but you shouldn’t need too much with all the other seasonings. Allow the beans to cook until heated through, about 5 minutes.

    Black beans and pinto beans in a skillet
    ​The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga
  5. Spoon the cilantro-lime rice and the black bean mixture onto lightly warmed flour tortillas, and add any additional toppings you want.

    Cilantro-lime rice and black bean mix spooned into center of flour tortilla
    ​The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga
  6. Wrap the burritos: Fold the short ends in, then fold one long side over the filling and gently push to ensure the fold is tight before rolling up the remainder of the burrito.

    Flour tortilla with rice and beans being rolled into burrito shape
    ​The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga
  7. Cut in half, and serve immediately.

    Vegetarian bean and rice burritos sliced in half and ready to serve
    ​The Spruce Eats / Diana Chistruga
  • Warm tortillas are much easier to fold. You can microwave them under a damp paper towel for 15 seconds, place them on a griddle over low heat, or wrap them in foil and bake for about 15 minutes at 350 F.
  • Try to keep your fillings 3 to 4 inches wide and about 8 inches long. If you add more, your veggie burrito may not close properly.
  • Let the burritos sit for a couple of minutes so the tortillas mold to the fillings.

Burritos are an excellent opportunity to clean out the refrigerator and pantry. Adding this or that and switching out ingredients is part of the fun of this dish.

  • Add salsa or pico de gallo, or use either to replace the hot sauce.
  • Spice up the burrito with canned green chiles or fresh or jarred jalapeño slices.
  • Toss 1/2 cup of corn or chopped bell pepper to the skillet when sautéing the vegetables.
  • Fold sliced avocado or a dollop of guacamole into the burrito.
  • Add a chopped tomato or canned spicy, chunky tomatoes (drained).
  • Shred vegan cheese and sprinkle it on the filling before folding.
  • Though not common in a burrito, a bit of shredded lettuce gives it an extra crunch.
  • For a little extra protein, add a scrambled egg or some leftover tofu scramble.

Generally, vegetarian burritos are pretty healthy because they’re filled with beans, rice, and veggies. The nutritional value is going to depend on the ingredients you add. One that will up the calorie count is sour cream, and there’s little difference between store-bought dairy and vegan versions. A homemade vegan sour cream is a good alternative.

Vegetarian Mexican Casserole With Black Beans

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