Easy Baked Beef and Cheese Chimichangas

April 20, 2023

By: Miranda Lamb

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It is no secret that I could eat Mexican food five times a week and be perfectly happy! I love all the delicious Tex-Mex foods flavored with cilantro, lime, and cumin topped with sour cream, cheese and maybe some avocado! YUM! And you’ll love these easy baked beef and cheese chimichangas. The beef and cheese chimichangas have all the flavor of a deep fried chimichangas, but are super easy to get to the table on a weekday.

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Make Ahead Beef and Cheese Chimichangas

The beef and cheese chimichanga recipe does have a few more ingredients than some of my other recipes. But these chimichangas are easy to make as many of the ingredients are just some flavorful spices. And I tweaked the Mexican dish recipe til I found a combination that is delicious, crisp on the outside, but the chimichangas can still be made ahead.

beef and cheese chimichangas

You simply make the beef and cheese chimichanga filling. Roll the filling into soft shells. Place chimichangas in a casserole dish and place covered in the fridge, til you are ready to cook! No standing at the stove frying chimichangas, while everyone else eats! Easy Beef and Cheese Chimichangas will come out of the oven hot, ready for everyone to eat together!

What is a Chimichanga?

A chimichangas is a Tex-Mex dish made with beef or chicken wrapped in a soft flour tortilla shell like a burrito, filled with a combination of cheese, beans and rice. Chimichangas are fried or baked til crispy on the outside. Typically, chimichangas also have some kind of white or red queso sauce poured over top before serving.

How Are Beef and Cheese Chimichangas Made?

These Easy Baked Beef and Cheese Chimichangas are simple to make.

Step One:

Make the filling by browning the ground beef. When beef is half-way done, add diced onion. Finish cooking beef and onions. Drain beef.

Step Two:

Add spices, chilis, and refried beans to beef mixture. Stir until mixed well.

Beef and cheese chimichangas

Step Three:

Warm tortillas in microwave to make them easier to fold. Put about 1/4 cup of beef mixture in center of warmed tortilla. Add cheese on top of beef.

How to Roll Beef and Cheese Chimichangas

Step Four:

Fold long ends of tortilla toward center of filled flour tortilla shell. Then fold up ends toward the center, forming a rectangle. Warmed tortilla should fold pretty easy. You can use a tiny amount of water on your fingertips or food brush to “glue” the ends closed.

beef and cheese chimichangas

Place chimichanga into casserole pan with fold side down.

beef and cheese chimichangas

Making Chimichangas in the Oven

Chimichangas are often fried in oil on the stovetop. But for this recipe we are going to bake in oven!

Step Five:

When you are ready to bake your chimichangas, melt butter in a small dish. Brush melted butter over the beef and cheese chimichangas. This will give your chimichangas a nice crisp browned outer layer after baking in the oven.

beef and cheese chimichangas

Place in oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. For the last 2-3 minutes, turn broiler feature on in the oven. DON’T walk away from oven while chimichangas are under the broiler. Broiling will crisp the beef and cheese chimichangas very quickly. But be aware that the broil feature can take the chimichangas from perfection to burnt quickly if you don’t keep an eye on them.

Step Six: Homemade Queso Sauce

While the beef, cheese, and bean chimichangas are baking in the oven, it’s time to make the homemade queso sauce. Using a small saucepan on the stovetop, heat up the canola oil and then sprinkle in the flour. With the flour paste, you are making a thickening agent to make your queso sauce nice and thick.

Slowly whisk in the beef broth, whisking away most of the flour lumps. Simmer for a few minutes to allow the sauce to thicken.

beef and cheese chimichangas queso sauce

Remove saucepan from heat and add in your cheese. Using cheese that you shredded yourself will make homemade queso sauce more creamy and less stringy. But pre-shredded cheese will still do fine:) Add your spices. Stir. And finally add a dash of heavy cream! Yum!

beef and cheese chimichangas

Step 7:

Pull chimichangas out of the oven. Pour homemade queso sauce of the beef and cheese chimichangas and serve with sour cream, tomatoes or salsa.

beef and cheese chimichangas

Ideas for Chimichanga Fillings

I tried to keep these chimichangas pretty basic so they are easy for a weekday meal. But you can experiment with other ideas for chimichangas fillings.

  • beans
  • rice
  • jalepenos
  • extra cheese
  • shredded beef instead of ground beef
  • salsa

What to Serve With Chimichangas

The homemade queso sauce really takes these Easy Baked Beef and Cheese Chimichangas up a notch from good to scrumptious. But you can have fun trying out other chimichanga toppings and sides.

beef and cheese chimichangas. Tex-Mex meals made with ground beef and a homemade queso sauce.

Serving suggestions with chimichangas:

  • lettuce
  • store bought queso sauce
  • sour cream
  • avocado or guacomole
  • pico de gallo
  • rice or seasoned cilantro and lime rice
  • refried beans
  • sweet corn cake

Enjoy! Grab the easy printable recipe below!

Easy Baked Beef and Cheese Chimichangas

Delicious oven fried beef and cheese chimichangas that are crisp on the outside and cheesy on the inside! Chimichangas can be made ahead and easily oven baked to feed a crowd!
Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time45 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: beef and cheese, Beef Chimichangas, ground beef, mexican dish, Tex-Mex
Servings: 6 people

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground beef
  • 1/2 medium onion diced
  • 1/4 cup refried beans
  • 1/2 can diced chilis (mild)
  • 1 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 2 tbls cilantro fresh
  • 1 tbls chili powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 lime juiced
  • 3/4 cup shredded cheese
  • 8-10 tortillas soft taco size (I used Mission brand)
  • 2 tbls butter for brushing shells melted

Queso Sauce

  • 1 1/2 tsp canola oil
  • 4 tsp flour
  • 3/4 cup beef broth
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese grated is best
  • 1 tsp cumin scant
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/8 tsp onion powder
  • 2 tbls heavy cream

Instructions

  • Brown 1 lb of ground beef. When beef is halfway cooked through, add diced onions. Finish cooking together.
  • Drain beef. Add diced chilis, cilantro, and refried beans. Stir.
  • Add paprika, chili powder, cumin, salt, and juice of lime.
  • Warm tortilla shells in the microwave. Put on plate with a slightly damp paper towel. Microwave for 1 minute.
  • Put about 1/4 cup of beef mixture in middle of tortilla shell. Sprinkle with cheese.
  • Fold sides toward middle, touching sides. Fold ends toward middle. Place seam down in casserole dish .
  • Continue till beef mixture is gone. Brush outside of chimichangas with butter.
  • Cook for 15-20 minutes at 400 degrees. Broil on high for 2 minutes (do not walk away from oven;)
  • While chimichangas are baking, put a saucepan on stovetop for making queso sauce.
  • Heat canola oil in saucepan. Add flour and whisk together.
  • Slowly whisk in beef broth, stirring to get a smooth mixture. Continue stirring at a simmer until sauce thickens. About 5 minutes.
  • Remove from heat. Add in cheese, stirring til melted.
  • Add in spices and heavy cream.
  • Keep queso sauce warm and serve over hot chimichangas with sour cream and salsa.

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