Tastes like Chicken – Chipotle Chicken Burrito Copycat Recipe

Chipotle Chicken Burrito Copycat Recipe

The best copycat for Chipotle Mexican Grill’s chicken you’re going to find. Succulent, juicy and flavorful with just a bit of spice, just like Chipotle.



The Chicken:

  • 1 pound chicken breast or thighs, boneless, skinless*
  • 1 one-inch piece of Chipotle chile, from a can of Chipotle Peppers in Adobo Sauce, seeds removed, diced and mashed
  • 1 tablespoon oil (Chipotle uses Rice Bran oil)
  • 1/2 tablespoon water
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
  • scant 1/2 teaspoon vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon Chipotle powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • scant 1/8 teaspoon black pepper**
  • scant 1/8 teaspoon oregano**

The Burritos:

  • 4 very large tortillas (see note)
  • 2 cups of Cilantro Lime Rice, hot
  • 2 cups of black beans, doctored with a little onion powder, garlic powder and cumin, hot
  • 1/4 of the diced chicken
  • 1/4 of Chipotle’s Copycat Pico de Gallo
  • 6 ounces Monterrey jack, grated
  • 8 ounces of sour cream


For the Chicken:

Mix all ingredients in a Ziploc bag, squeezing out excess air. Massage thoroughly into and around chicken. Place in a container in the fridge. This needs a long marinade process, 12 to 24 hours; Mix the evening before for dinner the following day.

When ready to cook, place chicken on hot grill or hot skillet over medium-high heat and grill or cook until just done. Remove, rest a few minutes if able, then chop into small pieces. Save chicken and any juices together to make the burritos or bowls.


  • You may wonder about the very small amount of Chipotle Chile from the canned Chipotle in Adobo and the tiny amount of the Chipotle powder. I don’t know what the restaurant actually uses, but I tried many variations of many combinations of the two as well as tried using just one or the other – using both makes it taste more like the restaurant version.
  • Vinegar: I found nothing that indicated Chipotle uses vinegar, but vinegar (standard to an Adobo sauce) adds a little pep that is missing in other home-made versions.

* If the chicken is thick, slice in half horizontally.

**Scant is not used in recipes as often as it used to be; if you’re not familiar with the term it means to slightly short the measurement, but not quite by half. If you don’t have the 1/8th inch measurement, just use a good pinch of the oregano and pepper.

To Assemble:

The order of the ingredients is very important for a successful roll. The order should be rice, beans on top, but use a slotted spoon to drain off the excess moisture, chicken, salsa, sour cream and then cheese. Place all ingredients, in proper order on the tortilla, but when placing the ingredients, don’t put them in the exact center, but just slightly toward you. in the bottom third of the tortilla in a horizontal row.

Fold the portion closest to you toward the back while at the same time, tucking in the sides. I’ve found that it takes a deft hand because there are going to need to be a couple of little adjustment tucks as you go. Once the top is over, pull it towards you, pressing down a bit, tightening up the burrito and then finish the roll. A good tight burrito actually tastes different than a loose one – all the flavors are forced together and meld throughout the burrito. Wrapping in foil seems to not only keep a mess from happening but also continues to steam the tortilla a bit – and that texture is more important than the type of tortilla used – even a thicker tortilla seems more delicate.

The Tortillas:

The texture of the tortilla is very important to a successful burrito. The tortilla should be steamed and soft. I find the easiest method is to wrap several in clean towel, place in the microwave for about ten seconds, turn over and microwave 10 more seconds. Keep wrapped and pull out one at a time.

If the tortillas are dry, wrap loosely in a slightly moist towel. Wet the towel, wring it thoroughly to remove as much moisture as possible, then microwave the tortillas. Don’t leave them in the wet towel when done, fold each into quarters and place, stacked into another towel to keep them moist.

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