Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps

Update 6/2012: Taken after the model of these delicious wraps, I threw these together for dinner one night nearly three years ago in a frantic attempt to feed my hungry family and use ingredients I already had on hand. And the result was such a smashing success that we’ve continued to enjoy this recipe at least monthly since (and that’s saying a lot coming from the lady who doesn’t repeat many meals). Full of flavor, these wraps are a snap to make. The method turns out a delightfully crunchy tortilla that is filled with rice, chicken, beans, spices and cheese. And they make great leftovers. I just love it when a meal happens to fit all the criteria I love: healthful, fast, delicious. Score.

Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps

Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps

Yield: Makes 6 wraps

Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps

Note: This is one of the most adaptable recipes on here (reading through the comments will prove that – your variations sound amazing!). Feel free to up the cilantro, add in a different meat of your choice, eliminate the pepper, add green chilies – seriously, the options are endless.


  • 1 cup cooked rice, warm or at room temperature
  • 1 cup cooked, shredded chicken (or other leftover meat, like shredded pork or beef)
  • 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 green onion, finely sliced (white and green parts)
  • 1/2 red or green pepper, diced
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1/2 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 2 cups shredded cheese (I use a combination of Monterey jack and sharp cheddar)
  • Sour cream (optional)
  • 6 burrito-sized flour tortillas


  1. Mix rice together with chili powder, cumin and garlic salt. Add remaining ingredients except for cheese and sour cream. Sprinkle cheese over tortillas, leaving 1/2-inch border around edges, then arrange chicken and rice mixture down the center of each tortilla. (Optional: I like to dollop little bits of sour cream over the cheese before arranging chicken and rice mixture down the center – it makes the wraps delightfully creamy.) Roll stuffed tortillas, leaving edges open and slightly flatten the wraps with the palm of your hand. Spray seam-side of the wrap lightly with cooking spray.
  2. Heat a large non-stick skillet (or griddle) over medium heat for 1 minute. Arrange wraps, seam-side down, in pan or griddle and cook until golden brown and crisp, about 2-3 minutes per side. Cooking them seam-side down first helps seal the long edge so they don’t fall apart. Transfer to a plate and repeat with remaining wraps. Serve warm.
Recipe Source: original recipe from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe

354 Responses to Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps

  1. Leslie says:

    Oh these sound and look so good! Now I know what is for dinner tonight! Thank you so much! And thanks for responding about how many Parm. rolls you defrosted (on the last post). You are very helpful and responsive. It is very much appreciated!!! Have a wonderful day. :)

  2. Patsyk says:

    They look wonderful! My hubby often puts wraps on the grill to get them crispy too… he likes the look of the grill marks on them.

  3. John and Crystal Pinegar Family says:

    Yum! I’m going to make these witht the leftover Kalua pork I made last night. :)

  4. JoAnn says:

    Hi from a fellow Wisconsin-ite!

    Just discovered your site from Tasty Kitchen – the sweet & sour chicken recipe caught my eye. I know my husband will love those!

  5. Sara says:

    Mmmmm, we had quesadillas last night, but I wish we had had these! They look yummy. Maybe later in the week.

  6. Tara says:

    Oh yum!!! My sister told me about your blog! I love all your stuff! Thanks for sharing all your fabulous recipes!!! :) We are making Caramel Crunch Bars tonight and this one is going on my list for dinners! :)

  7. Leslie says: gotta love when you make a “non planned” dinner and it turns out perfect!

  8. Jenn says:

    I think it’s great you had all of those things on hand–cilantro? That’s only hanging around if I had it on my weekly menu!

  9. Marisa says:

    Oh yum!!! They look really, really good. I love when you can throw a meal together quickly and have it turn out to be awesome. I’ll for sure have to try this recipe!

  10. Leisel says:

    I love how you used the word snarf! That’s my kinda gal! Looks like another winner!!!

  11. Velva says:

    What a great healthy weeknight dinner.
    I can totally relate to having difficulty just throwing stuff together for dinner on a weeknight, while the pressure is on to feed the hungry bunch :-)

  12. grace says:

    mmm…cheesy and definitely snarf-worthy! the ONLY thing i’d change is to go with all jack cheese and no cheddar. yeah, it makes a great color variety, but i just don’t like it!

  13. Katie says:

    YUM! That looks soooo good!

  14. teresa says:

    score indeed! my family would love this!

  15. Melanie says:

    Anonymous – oh my goodness, I can’t believe I left the most important ingredient out! Thanks for calling it to my attention.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Hi Melanie…are there beans in this or not? I didn’t see them in the ingredients, but I think I see them in the pictures. How much do you put in? They look so yummy!

  17. Melanie says:

    Jan – I love your comments (but you know that already). I’m glad you tried these – I’ve been waiting to get a second opinion on them, beside my family’s. Thanks for letting me know!

  18. Jan Russell says:

    SOOOOOO GOOD! I made these today without cilantro (didn’t have any) or peppers (don’t like them) and they were still totally snarf worthy! I loved them!!!

  19. The Evans says:

    I’ve never taken the time to comment on your blog but I love your recipes! I’ve already made this recipe and the chili mac this week. Thanks for the great recipes. These wraps got two big thumbs up from my husband!

  20. Laura says:

    My hubby will love this dish! He loves tortillas filled with his meal, the meat, rice, beans etc. FYI you are featured again on tasty kitchen with you sweet and sour chicken!

  21. Julianne says:

    We made this last night (“we” meaning “Ryan”) and it was terrific. We used homemade tortillas and they did just fine. We used mild cheddar and mozerella as the cheeses. I think next time I’ll add a little tomato and/or pico to the mixture. Anyway, thumbs up, majorly.

  22. Melanie says:

    The Evans – hey, thanks for checking in! I’m glad that you liked the chili mac and these wraps. I appreciate you letting me know.

  23. Jessie says:

    I made these the night you posted them and my husband was in heaven. He was so excited for left overs! He always says his co-workers envy his lunch leftovers! Thanks for the great receipe!

  24. Laura says:

    Ok Melanie, you are taking over Tasty Kitchen. This recipe is featured there today, but I’m right there with ya with Teriyaki Sliders.

  25. Melanie says:

    Jessie – thanks so much for letting me know you made these and liked them. I’m all about creating lunch-leftover-envy! Thank you for checking in.

  26. SeaShore says:

    Thanks for this recipe, we had them tonight & loved them. Even my husband, who thinks beans are vile, loved them. We did add a bit more heat to the spices, but that’s us. Thanks again!

  27. Loralee and the gang... says:

    These were delicious! I didn’t use up all the filling the first night because we used smaller tortillas, but it kept in the fridge beautifully, and made a quick, easy, and delicious lunch for the next couple of days!
    Thanks, Melanie!

  28. Kevin says:

    Those wraps look so cheesy and good!

  29. Melanie says:

    SeaShore – ok, the husband-thinking-beans-are-vile thing made me laugh. I don’t know why. No offense to your husband, but it was funny. I’m gld that despite the beans, they were a hit! Thanks for letting me know.

  30. The Geists says:

    These were seriously so good!! I had just made a chicken and rice dinner the night befor and used them for his recipie, which made it fast and easy!! I also liked it with a side of fresh salsa and sour cream and just dipped it into them both for a delicious juicy bite!!

  31. Melanie says:

    Loralee and the gang – glad these were great the first night AND as leftovers. Thanks for letting me know!

    The Geists – don’t you love when leftovers make for a great second dinner? Thanks for letting me know you liked these!

  32. Melanie says:

    Stacie – I love the “healthy” crispiness to them also. Thanks for letting me know you enjoyed them. Hope your husband likes them better next time with additional “goop.”

  33. Stacie Aho says:

    I really liked these. I love how they use up leftovers, but they are so yummy and versatile. My husband thought they were a little dry, so next time I’ll really load on the sour cream (hehe), add some guac, and tomatoes. I think that will moisten them up a bit. I love that they get all crispy just by spraying them with Pam (I used fat free olive oil spray).


  34. Anonymous says:

    So I made these Grilled Burritos and my husband, who is very hard to please when it comes to cooking, just loved them. He wanted them a couple days later, which is ok since I had stuff left over to make them. They were a big hit and super easy!!!

  35. Melanie says:

    Anonymous – oh man, I love to hear when the picky husband loves a meal. Thanks for letting me know!

  36. Emily says:

    These were so good, Thanks for the recipe!

  37. Melanie says:

    Emily – glad you liked these. Thanks!

  38. Amy says:

    Wow made these last night with homemade guac. My family loved them! My brother was in town from El Paso, so I always get nervous making mexican for him, but he raved about them! So happy I found your blog! I also made the Caramel Crunch Bars for my goodie trays and they turned out fabulous also! I have a lot of other meals on my list too of yours and can’t wait to try them!! Thanks again!

  39. Melanie says:

    Amy – I think these would be divine with homemade guacamole. I’m so glad your brother liked them, too! And thanks for letting me know you liked the Caramel Crunch Bars!

  40. Amy H. says:

    Late this afternoon- no dinner plan but had some chicken to “do something with”. I went to your blog which I have bookmarked and found this quick recipe that I had all the ingredients for! Yea! What a great quick and easy recipe that we all loved! I especially liked the fresh lime juice! This is definitely a keeper! THANKS!

  41. Melanie says:

    Amy H. – I love it when nights like that actually work out and dinner is good. I’m glad this recipe came through for you. Thanks for letting me know!

  42. [...] fixing another meal on your grill.  This recipe is my adaptation of a recipe that I saw over on My Kitchen Cafe.  It turn out delicious and the family loved [...]

  43. Danielle says:


    We really love these. I was wondering, have you ever tried freezing them?
    I think they would be great for a quick meal as we head off to dance or something.

  44. Mel says:

    Danielle – I’ve never tried freezing these but it is a good idea. If I were to freeze them, I would wrap the tortilla more like a burrito so that there isn’t an open end and then microwave to reheat. Let me know if you try it!

  45. Felicia says:

    Thanks so much for this recipe! I made them for Father’s Day and my husband loved them!

  46. Mel says:

    Thanks, Felicia!

  47. Heather says:

    Tried these ones last week and was glad I had leftovers- I used to not like leftovers until your recipes! I have printed so many to try and know they will be delicious! Keep up the amazing cooking and baking! :)

  48. Erin says:

    These were SO GOOD! So easy, especially with rotisserie chicken. Wonderfully simple, thank you!!

  49. Mel says:

    Erin – so glad you liked these! The tender flavor of rotisserie chicken works wonders in simple dishes like this.

  50. Mel says:

    Thanks, Heather! I’m glad you’ve liked many recipes – and that they’ve converted you to leftovers!

  51. Aubri says:

    We love these and have them at our house quite often. But…I just got a panini grill for my birthday, and we made these in the panini maker. They were so fast and easy! If you have a panini grill, be sure to try making these and your other crispy wraps (love them too!) in it!

  52. Mel says:

    Aubri – I don’t have a panini grill but it is a great idea to use one! Better add one to my ever-growing wish list!

  53. Amy says:

    Melanie, I CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF YOUR RECIPES!! I make something different from your website once and week, and have NEVER been disappointed! I don’t know where you get all of your recipes, but they are always awesome. This one was a delight. Followed it up with your mint brownies, which are now a family fav. Thanks!!! (Last week we had the simple asian noodles. So good…. I was afraid to make them, since my husband is Asian, and usually only likes authentic asian food, but he LOVED it!)

  54. Mel says:

    Amy – thank you so much for your comment! It makes me happy to know you have been excited about the recipes. Thank you!

  55. Cindy says:

    My whole family loved this!!! Even my meat and potatoes husband!It’s very much like the Cafe Rio or Costa Vida seasoning. Thank you!!!

  56. Mel says:

    Cindy – thank you – glad this was such a hit!

  57. Carolyn says:

    I’ve made these several times, and loved them, but tonight I made the chicken with the marinade from the Honey Lime Chicken Enchiladas…even better!! Soooo yummy!

  58. Laurel says:

    Hi Mel! I recently saw a guest post you did on another blog for some veggie wraps. I cannot remember where I saw it. Maybe there was a link on one of your posts? Can you help me out? They look wonderful and I look forward to trying them out! :)

  59. Lindsey says:

    I had to laugh just now when I looked up this recipe. I have been making these, from your site, for months now. We love them!! They are one of our go-to dinners when there isn’t much time or other preparation. The funny thing is I only just now noticed that they have CHICKEN in them! All this time I have been making them without. I guess I will have to try a little chicken next time, but if anyone is wondering, it is delicious without! Also, we have made them many times with quinoa instead of rice and that is equaly delicious and even more healthy!

  60. Jessi Harri says:

    I just made these and they were amazing! My 5 year old would not touch them (not surprising) but my 2 year old ate 2 of them! I froze 4 extras and cant wait to heat them up for a quick lunch. I have been looking for an easy recipe like this for awhile and I will definitely be making these again!

  61. [...] Next up are some Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps. Again, these seem to be quite easy to make and they look delicious! Although, if I’m really feeling lazy or in a rush, I think I would probably leave out the rice. Terrible, I know!Anyway, get the recipe here. [...]

  62. These look phenomenal. I’ve been obsessed with wraps lately, definitely have to try these.

  63. Kim says:

    These were DELICIOUS!! I had left-over white rice from a few nights ago(always do, but end up throwing it out). Quickly boiled a piece of frozen chicken and TADA. :o) I used Monterey Jack and Cheddar cheeses. My daughter said this was one of her favorite meals. Definite Keeper!!

  64. Misty says:

    SO amazing. We had them for dinner tonight and they were a hit. I’d never even thought of grilling wraps before. Seems so simple, yet it was incredibly tasty. Thanks.

  65. Jacqueline says:

    These are absolutely mouthwatering! Wow, we are going to have to try them and so easy too.

  66. Jolara says:

    These were SO VERY AWESOME! The only thing I did different was add 1 can (drained) of Rotel to add some extra kick! Super easy and super yummy, what more could you ask for?!

  67. I just saw these on Pinterest – Yum! I am putting the ingredients on my grocery list right now! :)

  68. Amber E. says:

    Just made these for supper……YUM! Seriously tastes like restaurant food :) Thanks SO much for the recipe, glad I ‘pinned’ it on pinterest!! Blessings!

  69. [...] Bread Sticks Beef Hot Dogs, Au Gratin Potatoes, fruit, raw veggies Homemade Pizza, fruit, veggies Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps, salad, fruit Dinner with extended family Dinner [...]

  70. [...] got the recipe from a site called Mel’s Kitchen Cafe.  She actually calls them “Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps,” but I tend to think “burrito” is a better word, since “wrap” makes [...]

  71. Jackie Brown says:

    Mel, I’m using this model for my freezer cooking class on Thursday. Thanks for the inspiration!

  72. Allison says:

    Just wanted to let you know I found this on Pinterest and it is AMAZING. Browning the tortillas is brilliant. Thanks!!

  73. [...] or in a rush, I think I would probably leave out the rice. Terrible, I know!Anyway, get the recipe here. via Itsy Bitsy [...]

  74. [...] mixture for the Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps. These were fun to make and oh-so-good! We served some for dinner and I froze the [...]

  75. [...] Meals: BBQ pork ribs, mashed potatoes, veggies Cheesy Enchilada Cassrole, raw veggies Crispy Chicken Wraps, raw veggies, fruit Crockpot Pizza (recipe coming soon!), salad Healthy Mama BBQ Chicken [...]

  76. [...] Chicken Pot Pie (two extras for the freezer) Grilled Burritos – sort of like these Spinach Mozzarella Meatloaf (extra for the freezer) Chicken & Rice Soup with Crusty Bread [...]

  77. [...] (DONE!) Breakfast Burritos  (decided not to make these, instead I used my tortillas to make extra Crispy Chicken Wraps) Crispy Chicken Wraps  (DONE!) Zesty Marinated Chicken  (not pictured, [...]

  78. amber says:

    These look so tasty and I bet they freeze great too. Can’t wait to try this recipe.

  79. Emily says:

    I found this recipe on Pinterest, and I just wanted to hop over here to tell you that these are amazing; my hubby and I love them! I made a big batch and we froze the extras! :)

  80. Erika says:

    Hey all!!?? So I have a lot of those packages of tyson pregrilled chicken! I thought it would be awesome to use in this recipe, but will it be safe to freeze and reheat????

  81. [...] get to this last week), green beans, garlic bread Zesty Marinated Chicken Breast, broccoli, rice Crispy Chicken Wraps, raw veggies, grapes Rice & Black Beans, cheese quesadillas, raw veggie Healthy Mama BBQ [...]

  82. [...] Dinner – Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps [...]

  83. Mel says:

    Erika – I’m not familiar with this product so I’m not sure if it would freeze and reheat well. You might try googling or looking on Tyson’s website to see if they have any additional information.

  84. Courtney says:

    Thank you so much for this fantastic recipe! I made it tonight and it was a hit. Love how flavorful and easy these are. Thanks again!!

  85. Sara says:

    I was searching frantically for something quick to make for dinner tonight when I came across this on We whipped it up super quick and LOVED it. Can’t wait to make it agin and share the recipe with family. Thanks for the wonderful dinner!

  86. Kimm says:

    These were sooooooo great and easy! I added a little bit more of the cumin and chili powder and spread sour cream on the tortilla shell like you suggested. I also used pepperjack cheese in there too for a little more kick! Thanks for this recipe!! It makes a TON too!!!

  87. Made these last night–added beans & corn to the mix & a fresh avocado–DELISH! Thank you!

  88. Sariah F. says:

    These are also wonderful to freeze! If you make 2 batches – they freeze perfectly and warm up perfectly! 2 minutes in microwave while covered in a damp papertowel – great backup for busy nights, yet still delicious :-) Thanks for a revamp from my old burrito recipe!

  89. Debora Cadene says:

    Hey Mel….made these for supper last night and crisped them up in my Hamilton Beach grill….. They were awsome. Thanks again for another keeper. My husband said I need to make these all the time as well, so for me thats enough right there. Can’t wait for lunch, cause guess what we’re having…

  90. Kristy H. says:

    Oh Mmm Gee!! I made these tonight and they are SO good. They taste similar to Chili’s Southwest Eggrolls. Yum!! The only thing I did different was to sauté the bell pepper/onion beforehand and double the spices. Maybe the latter was because I ended up with more rice. I used a cup (before cooking.) So yummy. A HUGE family hit – even with my picky 10 y/o!

  91. [...] – Crispy Southwestern Chicken Wraps, homemade french [...]

  92. Laura says:

    Just made these tonight — and they are AMAZING! Thank you for sharing!

  93. [...] Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps (picture and recipe courtesy of Mel’s Kitchen Cafe) [...]

  94. [...] Mel’s Kitchen Cafe GA_googleAddAttr("AdOpt", "1"); GA_googleAddAttr("Origin", "other"); [...]

  95. Mandy Henderson says:

    I made these tonight and they were DELICIOUS!! This is the first time in a long time that I’ve tried a recipe and my entire family of six LOVED it! Thanks so much for the recipe :)

  96. [...] burritos (replacing the chicken with beef)and avocado [...]

  97. [...] Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps (picture and recipe courtesy of Mel’s Kitchen Cafe) [...]

  98. [...] Crispy Southwest Chicken Wraps: [...]

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