I think most teenagers and twenty-somethings can agree that they love Chipotle. Whether or not it’s just the latest food craze, they actually do make a good burrito and they do it at a cheap price. Everybody has their own perfected Chipotle order, and yesterday I decided to mix mine up a bit. On my burrito I got brown rice, black beans, fajitas (sautéed bell peppers and onions), chicken, cheese, and spicy salsa. I normally don’t get the spicy salsa but I decided to add a little kick to my burrito. The spicy salsa was good and I could definitely taste the heat, but I should have gotten guacamole on my burrito because it would have nicely offset the salsa. The real game changer for my burrito though was the smokey tabasco sauce. I never noticed the bottles of this sauce on the tables and even if I did, I would never think to try it on my burrito. My friend recommended it though so I figured it was worth a shot and it was definitely worth it. All you need is a little dab of this sauce per bite to add a nice smokey flavor to your Mexican cuisine. My burrito was everything I wanted and more – a spicy, smokey, cheesy mixture of flavors all bundled together nicely in a warm tortilla (side note: Chipotle has perfected the thickness of their tortillas. They’re not too thick so they don’t take over the flavors of the inner-contents, yet not too thin that your burrito is prone to ripping).
Personally, I love Chipotle yet don’t eat it nearly as often as I would like to because I try to maintain a healthy diet. I do, however, make the pilgrimage about once a month to indulge. For when I’m craving the deliciousness of a burrito but don’t want all of the calories and fat, I make my own healthier version at home. I start by making a little bit of quinoa (pronounced KEEN-wah). Quinoa is the new “hip-grain” because of it’s health qualities. It is high in protein; relatively low in calories and fat; and a good source of iron, fiber, calcium, and potassium (source: About Food). What makes quinoa even better is how easy it is to make. All you have to do is rinse it, put it in water until it boils, then cover it with a lid and turn the heat down until all of the liquid is absorbed. It’s filling and makes it the perfect stable for your healthy burrito.
In addition to my quinoa, I like to add black beans and chickpeas, along with some sautéed bell peppers, onions, and spinach. I mix it all together with the quinoa and add some red pepper flakes, garlic salt, a hint of Sriracha, and some Archer Farms Mango Peach salsa (available at Target). Be careful not to add too much salsa though because nobody wants a soggy burrito. I sometimes also add some cumin if the mood strikes me. I then put it all in a whole wheat tortilla and occasionally spread a layer of avocado on the tortilla and add a sprinkle of some cheese (I prefer mozzarella because it’s a lower fat cheese or yogurt cheese because it’s also lower in fat and is lactose free). I then wrap it all together and put it on the panini maker. I highly recommend doing this because it makes the tortilla crisp and warm, and it makes the cheese melty and gooey on the inside. Once done, I then sit down and enjoy my burrito of health, satisfying my craving for Chipotle without all of the fat and calories.
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