Baked chicken chimichangas have long been my go-to weeknight Tex-Mex entree. Honestly, I can’t say I’ve ever actually made it on the weekend. No idea why because they’re so irresistible. I’ve been making this recipe for a good six years and I can’t tell you why I haven’t shared it sooner.
What are Chimichangas?
Traditionally, chimichangas are small, deep-fried burritos filled with chicken or beef, spices, and veggies. This recipe is actually inspired by a simpler, healthier variation that I found on Cooking Light. I must say, I’m not your typical Cooking Light frequenter but I love this recipe because these chimichangas are so flavorful and easily come together in about 25 minutes.
My chicken chimichangas are made with diced chicken, refried beans, diced green chiles, lots of spices, and a melted blend of Mexican cheeses. Topped with a drizzle of sour cream and homemade guacamole, they’re a Mexican-inspired dinner the whole family will say YES to.
How to Make Baked Chimichangas
Essentially I combine fully cooked chicken and all remaining ingredients/spices and mix to form a meat-based filling. From here we can line the filling on a burrito-sized tortilla and tightly roll it into a sealed burrito. Bake for a short amount of time at high heat for a golden brown exterior.
It helps to spray the exterior of the chimichangas with cooking spray to help give them more crunch, mimicking their fried counterparts.
Shredded Versus Diced Chicken
The recipe calls for two cups of diced chicken, however, shredded rotisserie chicken speeds the process up and adds a really nice texture. I would still suggest two cups of shredded chicken. The final result will be a more tender and creamier chimichanga.
The most important part regardless is small diced chicken, larger chunks of chicken will fall out and be too large to blend with the remaining ingredients.
Sour Cream Drizzle
One of the best things that ever happened to this recipe was the addition of drizzled sour cream. For a fancy flare, I like to water down some sour cream and mix it in a small Ziploc bag. Snip the corner and you can professionally drizzle each chimichanga to perfection. It’s the little things in life, folks.
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My absolute favorite easy weeknight Tex Mex inspired dinner. Chicken chimichangas made with chicken, refried beans, cheese, chopped green chilies, and lots of spices.
- 1 pound diced boneless, skinless chicken (breast or tenders work)
- 6, 8 inch soft flour tortillas
- 1/2 cup Mexican blend cheese
- 16 ounce can, fat-free refried beans
- 4.5 ounce can chopped green chiles, drained
- 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
- 1–2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- salt and pepper to taste
- olive oil and cooking spray for cooking
- Guacamole, sour cream, and salsa for serving (optional)
Sour Cream Drizzle
- 3–4 tablespoons sour cream
- 1–2 tablespoon water
- Preheat oven to 500 °F. For the sour cream drizzle, mix sour cream and water in a small bowl until smooth and creamy. You want it just thin enough to drizzle but not watery. Set aside.
- In a skillet or pan, heat oil on medium heat. Add chopped chicken and onion and simmer until the chicken is fully cooked through, about 6-8 minutes.
- Mix in the chopped green chiles, garlic, and spices and let simmer for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat.
- Lay out the tortillas and evenly spread two heaping tablespoons of refried beans down the center of each tortilla. Divide the chicken filling down the center of each of the tortillas as well. Top with cheese, to taste.
- Fold in the ends of the tortilla and roll into a tight burrito, ensuring the ends stay closed. Place on a baking sheet with the seam facing down so the chimichangas stay tightly wrapped. Give the tops of the chimichangas a quick spray with cooking spray.
- Transfer to the oven and bake on the top rack for 7-10 minutes or until the tops of the chimichangas just start to brown. Serve immediately with guacamole, a drizzle of sour cream, and salsa.
You can also make this with shredded rotisserie chicken. I would still heat the chicken to ensure it’s warm before baking. Whatever you do, you don’t want big chunks of chicken. Small is best.
- Serving Size: 2 chimichangas
- Calories: 652
- Sugar: 4.9g
- Sodium: 798mg
- Fat: 24.7g
- Saturated Fat: 10.5g
- Carbohydrates: 58.7g
- Fiber: 5.5g
- Protein: 46.6g
- Cholesterol: 128mg
Keywords: chicken chimichangas, baked chimichangas