Beef Chimichangas

Total Time

Prep: 25 min. Cook: 15 min.


1 dozen

Updated: Jun. 30, 2023
My husband loves this beef chimichanga recipe! I often double the recipe and freeze the chimichangas individually to take out as needed. I serve them with shredded lettuce and sour cream. —Schelby Thompson, Camden Wyoming, Delaware


  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 can (16 ounces) refried beans
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 3 cans (8 ounces each) tomato sauce, divided
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 12 flour tortillas (10 inches), warmed
  • 1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chiles
  • 1 can (4 ounces) chopped jalapeno peppers
  • Oil for deep-fat frying
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese


  1. In a large skillet, cook beef over medium heat, crumbling beef, until no longer pink; drain. Stir in the beans, onion, 1/2 cup tomato sauce, chili powder, garlic and cumin.
  2. Spoon about 1/3 cup of beef mixture off-center on each tortilla. Fold edge nearest filling up and over to cover. Fold in both sides and roll up. Fasten with toothpicks. In a large saucepan, combine the chiles, peppers and remaining tomato sauce; heat through.
  3. In an electric skillet or deep-fat fryer, heat 1 in. of oil to 375°. Fry the chimichangas for 1-1/2-2 minutes on each side or until browned. Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with cheese. Serve with sauce.

Beef Chimichanga Tips

What is a chimichanga?

A chimichanga is a popular Southwestern dish that’s almost identical to a burrito, except it's deep-fried. (Here are other Southwest recipes to try!)

Are chimichangas authentic Mexican food?

Many people say that chimichangas are a Mexican-American fusion dish. Chimichangas are based on Mexican burritos but are said to have been invented in Arizona, where a Mexican restaurant owner named Woody Johnson would deep-fry leftover burritos as an experiment.

What goes good with chimichangas?

Chimichangas are best served with guacamole, sour cream and salsa! (Try our Homemade Guacamole and Mexican Homemade Salsa for an entirely home-cooked meal.) You can also add rice and beans on the side.

Research contributed by Sarah Fischer, Taste of Home Culinary Assistant
Editor's Note: Chimichangas may be baked instead of fried. Brush with melted butter and bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown (if frozen, thaw before baking).

Nutrition Facts

1 chimichanga: 626 calories, 41g fat (9g saturated fat), 37mg cholesterol, 1094mg sodium, 46g carbohydrate (5g sugars, 6g fiber), 19g protein.