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Pull together canned items in your pantry to make super easy green chili smothered burritos. This flavorful meal comes together in a pinch!

With just a few items from  your pantry and a couple of fresh ingredients you’ll be enjoying a quick and easy meal. Green chili smothered burritos are quite filling on their own, but would taste great with some Spanish Rice and a dollop of Guacamole on top!

smothered burrito on a white plate topped with sour cream, olives, and avocado

Are you a meal planner?

I really like to plan ahead with my meals, but I think we all have those days when nothing goes according to plan. As tempting as it is to eat out, I’ve found so many delicious family meals just by shopping my own pantry! I always like to keep the pantry stocked with canned vegetables, beans, fruit, and other canned items that make dinner prep simple and easy on those crazy nights. Using my “cantry” saves me money, and makes it so much easier to put dinner on the table!

image says Cans + Pantry = Cantry in pink and grey block text

I love using canned vegetables for cooking, because they’re picked at the peak of ripeness and canned within hours, so their freshness is preserved. Studies have shown that canned vegetables and fruits are just as nutritious as fresh vegetables and fruits, but their longer shelf life means that they’re much easier to keep on hand.

Using canned fruits and vegetables makes it easier to prepare nutritious meals, and eating canned foods regularly can help you meet your recommended daily allowance of a variety of essential nutrients. Canned foods are a smart way to eat a healthy diet!

cooking chicken, black beans, and corn in a skillet then spooning it onto a flour tortilla

Easy “Pantry” meal

These Green Chili Smothered Burritos are a perfect example of an easy meal made by shopping my pantry. I used canned chicken, green chilis, corn, beans, and enchilada sauce to make them. With a little cheese and some flour tortillas that I already had on hand, I made a delicious and hearty meal that the whole family loved!

Filling. I started by adding my chicken breast, beans, corn, green chilis, and a dash of enchilada sauce to a large skillet, then add some garlic powder, chili powder, and cumin. Once the mixture is heated, stir in some chunks of cheese, then spoon into your flour tortillas and roll up into burritos.

Bake & Smother. Once the burritos are rolled, spray with cooking spray and bake 10-15 minutes, or until they are starting to get crispy and golden. Next is the best part: smother the burritos with enchilada sauce and cheese, then return to the oven until melty and gooey. Yum!

My family loves these topped with avocado, canned olives, and cilantro, with a little dollop of sour cream. They’re delicious straight out of the oven too!

collage of burritos after baking, then after being smothered with sauce and cheese

Tips, Variations + SToring Info

If you don’t have canned chicken, shredded chicken or rotisserie chicken work great as well. I like to use homemade green enchilada sauce, but if I don’t have the time, I use El Paso.

In this recipe, we bake the burritos before pouring the enchilada sauce over them. This allows the tortilla to get a little bit of crunch to them before the sauce weakens it. So instead of being completely soggy, it is a slightly softened tortilla, with a bit of texture to it.

When cooking with canned chicken, make sure to drain the chicken completely and season it well. The liquid used to preserve it sometimes makes it taste a little funny, so be sure the seasonings are on spot to cover that taste.

If you would prefer a ooey gooey burrito the grated cheese will give the burrito just that texture. The cubed cheese allows for more substantial cheese pockets in the burrito.

If you like salsa on your burrito, try any of these:

To make this a freezer meal you’ll want to complete steps 1-4. After you have folded the burritos wrap each one with plastic wrap. Place the remaining enchilada sauce into a freezer Ziploc.

STORE the sauce and wrapped burritos together in a freezer safe container. FREEZE for up to 3 months. To bake: Thaw and place the burritos on a greased or parchment lined baking sheet and Spray with cooking spray. Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until lightly golden. Pour the extra sauce evenly over the burritos and top with grated cheese. Bake for another 10 minutes until the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Green Chili Burritos topped with cilantro, avocado and olives on a white platter

And for more great Mexican dishes on the site, check out:

green chili smothered burrito with olives, cilantro and avocado on plate
5 from 5 votes

Green Chili Smothered Burritos Recipe

By: Lil' Luna
Pull together canned items in your pantry to make super easy green chili smothered burritos. This flavorful meal comes together in a pinch!
Servings: 8
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Total: 35 minutes


  • 12.5 oz chicken breast drained
  • 15 oz black beans drained and rinsed
  • 4 oz green chilis
  • 15 oz sweet corn drained
  • 10 oz green enchilada sauce
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 6 oz cheddar cheese divided, or monterrey jack cheese
  • 7-8 large flour tortillas warmed
  • cooking spray
  • sour cream, avocado, olives, etc for topping


  • Preheat the oven to 375.
  • Add the chicken breast, black beans, green chilies, sweet corn, and 2 tablespoons enchilada sauce to a large skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring gently, until heated through. Add the cumin, chili powder, and garlic powder, and mix to combine. Remove from heat and let cool 5 minutes.
  • While the filling mixture is cooling, cut four ounces of the cheese into small chunks. Grate the remaining two ounces of cheese and set aside.
  • Stir the cheese chunks into the chicken and bean mixture. Spoon about ¾ cup of the chicken mixture into the center of each tortilla. Fold the sides of the tortilla toward the center and roll up into a burrito. Repeat with remaining tortillas.
  • Place the burritos on a greased or parchment lined baking sheet. Spray with cooking spray. Bake 10-15 minutes, or until lightly golden. Pour the remaining enchilada sauce over the burritos, dividing evenly, and top with the grated cheese. Return to the oven and bake 10 minutes, or until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Serve warm, topped with desired toppings.


Calories: 357kcal, Carbohydrates: 41g, Protein: 24g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Cholesterol: 50mg, Sodium: 725mg, Potassium: 545mg, Fiber: 7g, Sugar: 6g, Vitamin A: 705IU, Vitamin C: 5.9mg, Calcium: 202mg, Iron: 3mg

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
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Green Chili Smothered Burritos - easy to make, full of flavor and perfect for dinner!

About Kristyn

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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Recipe Rating


  1. 5 stars
    One of your families favorite meals! It’s easy and quick! I usually make extra a freeze them for quick lunches!

    1. I have not, but if I were too. I would freeze them before smothering the sauce on top & wrap real well, then let thaw & bake as directed.

  2. 5 stars
    I made this last night for dinner, and it turned out amazing! The only change I made was adding some mexican rice inside the burritos, because that’s what we’re accustomed to. This was my first time using canned chicken and it was a delicious experience. I’m adding this to my recipe book – it’s a keeper!

  3. 5 stars
    These look fantastic – and I love chilli, I’m wondering if you think these would be too spicy for kids, when the can of chilli is included? Or are the quantities such that the level of spice is ok? Many thanks – Bec

    1. The green chili isn’t too spicy. I guess, it just depends on what your kids like. You could always add less, if you want 🙂 Hope you like!