We Tried 6 Frozen Lunch Burritos to Find Our Favorite
Here’s what you should stock your freezer with for the next mealtime emergency.
It’s not a secret: We’re big fans of frozen burritos. The warm, familiar bundles of food provide great comfort on days when you’re scrambling to grab a bite between tasks. And just like their breakfast-time cousins, they’re available in a wide variety of styles, from fancy burritos stuffed with high-quality ingredients, to the type of burritos you’d expect to dive into after buying them at the local gas station. So, since we’ve sampled the early morning offerings available from burrito companies, we decided to check out what they had available for lunch by tasting through six brands of savory burritos, available online and in grocery stores. Here are our rankings, from great to gross.
Sweet Earth’s Peruvian Burrito ($3.99)
We know Sweet Earth was our top pick for breakfast burritos as well, but so far this company’s vegetarian burritos are still edging out their carnivorous competitors, both in flavor and in creativity. It’s rare to find a frozen burrito with distinguishable ingredients, much less one that contains goat cheese. But goat cheese shines through wonderfully with the sweet potatoes and black beans, and the corn and quinoa add a good bit of textural intrigue. If you have the burrito budget to splurge, this wrap will definitely keep you satisfied through the second half of the work day.
Amy’s Cheddar Cheese Burrito ($2.99)
It’s surprising, really, but not a lot of burrito manufacturers seem to put a noticeable amount of rice in their burritos. However, an abundance of tender rice in this burrito, mixed with the black beans and cheese, really makes it feel like something you could have picked up from the deli aisle instead of the frozen meal section, or even just whipped up at home. It’s simple, sure, but it more than satisfied our burrito cravings.
Best Bean and Cheese Burrito
Whole Foods Market’s 365 Everyday Value Bean and Cheese Burrito ($1.69)
A word of warning: This burrito, if you choose to buy it, will likely be a molten mess. It’s, unfortunately, kind of a birthright for bean and cheese varieties, so you’ll want to wait a bit before you chow down. That aside, it’s honestly kind of odd to see actual, authentic cheddar cheese in a recognizable form in a frozen burrito. The beans in this burrito are also tender and delicious, and actually seem to have some sort of genuine spice added to them. For less than $2, this is definitely a good pick.
Best Spicy Burrito
Evol’s Spicy Steak Big Burrito ($5.29)
If a single burrito never seems to satisfy your hunger, consider giving this variation a try. Evol’s steak burrito is, indeed, big. Weighing in at eleven ounces, it's objectively ample. For frozen quality, the steak is also alright, albeit a bit chewy. Our one complaint with this burrito was that it is quite spicy, but there’s little flavor beyond just pure heat. The tomatoes, bell peppers, and onions supposedly contained in the burrito didn’t really come through, at least not in the one we tried. The rice was also undetectable, unlike Amy’s offering... Still, even if the flavors used aren’t exactly perfect, it’s still a hearty, tasty way to fill up. If you’re feeling like splurging a bit for your midday meal, this burrito is a decent choice.
Not Our Favorites
El Monterey Bean and Cheese ($4.49 for 8)
It hurts a little to put these in this category. After all, El Monterey burritos are classic, cheap freezer fair. And obviously, if these are your jam, we’re not gonna judge. It’s just that, unlike Whole Foods’ offering, there’s no discernable cheese in these burritos. Not in taste. Not visually. Nothing. They’re just over $0.50 each in cost, so the lack of recognizable cheese isn’t exactly surprising. Even so, Whole Foods’ burrito is bigger than El Moneterey’s and clearly has superior ingredients. You might as well grab a few if you can swing it.
Engine 2, Burrito Squarito Organic Bean and Veggie Medley ($2.99)
We didn’t realize that “veggie medley” was code for “indiscernible mush of vegetables” until we tried Engine 2’s burrito, but now we’re forever wary of the phrase. This burrito filling is like someone took a bunch of steamed, unseasoned veggies, stuck them in a food processor, and then just left it on for a good 30 minutes. It’s both goopy and gooey, and tastes like nothing but regret. For your own sake, just don’t.