How to Make a Healthy Breakfast Burrito
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And when it comes to healthy breakfast ideas, is there anything better than the breakfast burrito? It’s tasty, portable, easy to make, and so versatile — you can switch up the ingredients daily, so you never feel like you’re stuck in a breakfast rut. It’s also packed with protein, which may help boost energy levels.
“Breakfast burritos are a fun, tasty way to pack nutritious foods into your first meal of the day,” says Alyssa Lavy, MS, RD, CDN.
Here’s how to build a healthy breakfast burrito at home — and scroll down for one of our favorite healthy breakfast burrito recipes.
How to Make a Healthy Breakfast Burrito
Okay, so a four-cheese burrito with bacon probably won’t help you reach your weight-loss goals any faster. But as long as you choose healthful ingredients, you can whip up a yummy and filling breakfast burrito that gives you a headstart on your essential nutrients for the day.
Here are the basic burrito-making tips you need to know:
1. Start with a whole-grain wrap. You might think it’d be better to use collard greens or a lettuce leaf as your burrito wrapper, but don’t shy away from carbs. “We do need those whole-grain and high-fiber complex carbs, particularly in the morning to get ourselves going,” says Andrea N. Giancoli, MPH, RD, and Nutrition Manager at Openfit.
2. Add protein. Egg whites are an easy lean protein, but Giancoli says it’s fine to add a whole egg for healthy fat and additional nutrients. For a vegan version, swap in tofu. Avoid processed meats, which add extra saturated fat; if you’re craving bacon, try lower-sodium turkey bacon.
3. Don’t forget healthy fats. Giancoli recommends mashed avocado to hold your burrito ingredients together. You can also add a bit of shredded cheese, as long as you don’t go overboard — Lavy says a common mistake is “adding large portions of multiple fat sources, such as cheese, bacon, sausage, and avocado.”
4. Fill up with fiber. Beans can provide protein and fiber, of course, but don’t forget about veggies — zucchini, roasted potatoes, roasted brussels sprouts, and steamed broccoli and cauliflower are all great options for your breakfast burrito, Lavy says.
5. Finish with flavor. Traditional breakfast burritos rely on salty meats and cheese for flavor, but you can inject taste into every bite with dried herbs and spices like thyme, cumin, or smoked paprika. Giancoli loves adding salsa, “especially if it’s pico de gallo, you’re getting some fresh tomatoes, onions, and cilantro,” she says.
The Best Healthy Breakfast Burrito Ingredients
Looking to go beyond the basic breakfast burrito recipe? Check your fridge — breakfast burritos are “a great way to use up leftovers from the week and prevent food waste,” Lavy says. Here are our experts’ favorite veggies, fillings, and flavors:
- Protein: Eggs, leftover roasted chicken or pork, lean ground turkey or lean beef, sautéed tofu, beans, lentils, or nutritional yeast
- High-fat: Avocado, cheese, or turkey bacon
- Vegan protein: Tofu, beans, or nutritional yeast
- Veggies: Try these tasty combos: mushrooms, kale, and onions; garlic, peppers, and spinach; zucchini, sun-dried tomato, and capers; broccoli, basil, and tomatoes; asparagus, shallots, and roasted red peppers; or carrots, onions, and peppers.
- Flavors: Minced jalapeño, crushed red pepper, caramelized onions, low-sodium hot sauce, or healthier versions of your favorite condiments.
How to Wrap a Burrito
There’s nothing worse than a burrito that falls apart and spills everywhere. Follow these tips to keep yours all wrapped up.
- Warm your wrap for 10 to 15 seconds in the microwave, so it’s pliable. (Cold wraps are stiff and more likely to break.)
- Place your wrap on foil or parchment.
- Spread your filling in the center of your wrap, leaving the top half empty and a few inches free on the sides and bottom.
- Fold in the sides first, leaving about an inch of space between them.
- Fold up the bottom, then keep on rolling.
- Rest your burrito seam-side down to prevent spillage.
How to Store a Make-Ahead Breakfast Burrito
Breakfast burritos are perfect for meal prep — they’re easy to make in large batches and can be frozen for a few weeks. Here’s how to freeze breakfast burritos for later:
- Let your filling cool slightly. Steaming hot ingredients will yield soggy burritos.
- Follow the instructions above to make each burrito.
- Make burritos one at a time to prevent unrolling.
- Wrap each burrito with a layer of parchment paper, then a layer of foil. Foil keeps burritos fresh in the freezer, but it can impart a metallic flavor, especially if you’re using acidic ingredients. Parchment paper prevents this — plus it’s microwaveable, making it a breeze to reheat later.
- To reheat, simply remove the foil and microwave your breakfast burrito for one minute, flip it over, and heat for another 60 to 90 seconds.
Ready to start your morning right? Here’s a yummy, veggie-packed breakfast burrito recipe to get you inspired.
Green Breakfast Burrito Recipe
This healthy, protein-packed breakfast burrito is the perfect way to kick off your day.
- ¼ cup reduced-fat 2% plain Greek yogurt
- 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
- 4 fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley sprigs finely chopped
- 4 large egg whites (½ cup)
- 1 large egg
- nonstick cooking spray
- ½ cup finely chopped zucchini
- 2 Tbsp. finely chopped green onion
- ½ cup finely chopped raw spinach
- 1 6-inch whole wheat tortilla warm
- 2 Tbsp. feta cheese
- ground black pepper to taste; optional
To make yogurt dip, combine yogurt, lemon juice, and parsley in a medium bowl; mix well. Refrigerate until ready to use. (TIP: Dip can be prepared 24 hours in advance to enhance flavor.)
Combine egg white and egg in a small bowl; whisk to blend. Set aside.
Heat medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.
Lightly coat skillet with spray.
Add zucchini and green onion; cook, stirring frequently, for 3 to 4 minutes or until vegetables are softened.
Add spinach; cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes, or until spinach is wilted.
Add egg mixture; cook, over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, for 2 to 3 minutes, or until eggs are set.
Top tortilla with egg mixture, cheese, and pepper (if desired).
Roll tortilla burrito style.
Serve with yogurt dip.
The Nutrition Facts box below provides estimated nutritional information for this recipe.