Editor's note: This story was originally published on March 19, 2013. It was updated on April 4, 2019.
The burrito is America's Mexican food, and here in Phoenix, we're lucky to have some of the nation's best — fresh, flavorful, and more often than not, fearsome in size. Check out our list of 10 burritos that remind you why you choose to live in Arizona.
Pollo Burro at Asadero Norte de Sonora
122 North 16th Street
The chicken burrito at Asadero Norte de Sonora is refreshing on every level. First, there's the way in which your burrito is served, following a complimentary cup of frijoles a la charra as well as chips and salsa. Then there's the burrito itself, which is 100 percent fresh — green guacamole, crisp cabbage, light sauce, and chopped rotisserie chicken with the skin on. Contrary to most garnishments, the cucumber slices, radishes, lime, and grilled jalapeño accompanying your burrito actually complement the dish rather than simply offer up aesthetic.
Carne Adovada Burrito at Los Dos Molinos
There's a reason why Los Dos Molinos has the motto "Some Like It Hot." Nearly everything on the menu packs a serious punch, and the carne adovada burrito is certainly no exception. Red-sauce-drenched pork (you can opt for green if you like) is packed inside a thick tortilla smothered in more red sauce and cheese accompanied by refried beans and rice. It's the kind of burrito that requires a fork, a knife, and a bottomless pitcher of water (or maybe just a Kick Ass margarita).
Carne Asada Burrito at Asadero Toro
1715 West McDowell Road
Serious meat-lovers would do well to visit the fairgrounds-facing fast food restaurant that is Asadero Toro on McDowell Road. The restaurant's carne asada burrito is a dish that's straight to the point. Inside a large flour tortilla, you'll find nothing but grilled beef — no fillers, no sauces, just straight-up meat. What you do with your beef burrito is entirely up to you. Asadero Toro offers an ample serve-yourself condiments bar complete with a variety of salsas, peppers, freshly chopped vegetable garnishes, citrus, and more. And if you find all that meat in your burrito to be too straightforward, for an additional cost you easily add a side of rice or beans to your plate.
The Devil's Mess Breakfast Burrito at Phoenix Public Market Cafe
14 East Pierce Street
Those who go to the Phoenix Public Market just to shop the open-air market really aren't taking in the full experience. There are food trucks, yes. Samples, of course. But have you ever tried the Devil's Mess Breakfast Burrito inside at the cafe? It's a hearty helping of three scrambled eggs, Schreiner’s chorizo, chiles, onions, and spinach with a side of fire-roasted salsa. This breakfast burrito is just the fuel you need to power through your farmers market excursions or just back to the office.
Arizona Burrito at Barrio Queen
Serious foodies have long argued over what Arizona's official state dish should be. The chimichanga? The Sonoran hot dog? Look, we're not here to take sides (so to speak, since salsa would be a great idea) but we are willing to mention a serious contender — the Arizona Burrito at Barrio Queen. The restaurant and tequileria serves up a pork green chile burrito topped with melted Oaxaca cheese, green tomatillo sauce, red onion, crema fresca, and cilantro. It's a burrito that any state would be proud to claim as its own.
Green Chile Burrito at Rito's Mexican Food
The green chile burro at Rito's is practically a legend in downtown Phoenix and the new spot along Seventh Street. Green chile-loving folk once lined up out the door when Rito's was a lunch-only burrito bungalow, and it's no wonder why. A light flour tortilla contrasts nicely with the tender beef and spicy green chile sauce that inevitably spills its way out after the first bite. If you really want to outdo yourself, you can order the green chile burrito enchilada style, but prepared for a serious food coma later.
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Bean and Cheese Burrito at Carolina's
Let's be honest right off the bat: The tortillas at Carolina's are where the magic really happens. Not to say that contents of their burritos aren't good — they're downright drool-worthy — but the house-made tortillas have been Carolina's claim to fame, year after year, after year. The nice thing about ordering a simple bean and cheese burrito here is that you have nothing to overpower the much-deserved tasting of their blanket-size flour casing.
Red Chile Burrito at Comedor Guadalajara
1830 South Central Avenue
We'll admit that Comedor Guadalajara keeps some strange hours (closed Monday and Tuesday). But the ample portions and ample flavor are well worth moving your schedule around. Case in point, the red chile burrito enchilada style. Tear open what visible parts of tortilla remain underneath your melted cheese and enchilada sauce and watch as the flood gates open. Thick chunks of marinated beef swimming in a red chile sauce pour out onto your plate and mix with everything your plate holds dear — tortilla, beans, and rice. It's like a natural disaster — in a delicious way.
Chicken Burrito with Red or Green Sauce at Los Taquitos
Don't let the name fool you. The wow factor of the food menu isn't limited only to the tacos at Los Taquitos. The burritos are just as fresh and flavor-packed as the rest of the food in the kitchen. Take the chicken burrito for example: beans, chicken, onions, and cilantro wrapped up in a warm, grilled flour tortilla. For added taste, pour on either the spicy green or red salsas — but be warned, customers within earshot will definitely hear whatever noises you make when you take that first bite.
Carne Asada Burrito at La Frontera Comida Mexicana
209 North 16th Street
Unlike some of the others on this list, the carne asada burrito at Frontera Comida Mexicana doesn't come from a brick-and-mortar restaurant but rather a food truck on 16th and Van Buren streets. The mobile burrito features Sonoran-style marinated steak, sweet, smoky, and tender with a citrus marinade. This beef carries so much flavor that it stands on its own, without the addition of beans or rice. The burrito is topped with fresh cilantro and onions and can also be dressed up with hot sauce and guacamole at your taste buds' discretion.