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Enchiladas vs. Burritos: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Harlon Moss || Updated on June 30, 2024
Enchiladas are typically tortillas filled with meat and/or cheese, bathed in chili sauce; burritos are larger tortillas wrapped around a filling, often including beans and rice, and are not coated in sauce.

Key Differences

Enchiladas immerse themselves in the rich tradition of Mexican cuisine, becoming synonymous with a tantalizing mixture of chili sauce and a variety of fillings. The core of enchiladas often embraces ingredients like meat, cheese, beans, and potatoes, enveloped in a corn tortilla. Contrastingly, burritos introduce themselves as hearty, wholesome parcels of delight, predominantly enveloped in flour tortillas. Their generously sized tortilla willingly accommodates a more diverse selection of fillings, often journeying through rice, beans, vegetables, and meat, possibly complemented by cheese, salsa, and guacamole.
Enchiladas usually present themselves quite openly with a sauce-soaked appearance, welcoming a sprinkling of additional toppings such as cheese, onions, and perhaps a dollop of sour cream. This dish often takes pride in its vibrant, slightly messy presentation, where each component can be visually appreciated by the diner. The soaking sauce not only adds flavor but also permeates the tortilla, influencing its texture and taste.
In the realm of burritos, the visual appeal pivots towards the neatness and mysteriously enclosed fillings. The ample tortilla wraps its contents in a secure, albeit hidden, embrace, prompting a sense of surprise and discovery with each bite. This concealment of ingredients under the flour tortilla also lends itself to an inherent difference in experience compared to the overtly visible components of enchiladas.
Both enchiladas and burritos, while disparate in preparation and presentation, harbor a shared capability to encapsulate a range of flavors and textures within the confines of tortillas. Enchiladas generally skew towards a saucier, potentially fork-requiring experience, celebrating their coating as a fundamental element of their identity.
Burritos, alternatively, encapsulate their myriad flavors within, presenting a somewhat clean, handheld eating adventure, where the sauce often resides internally, mingling directly with the other fillings. Both dishes, while divergent in aspects of their culinary journey, uphold the magnificent tradition of enclosing vibrant Mexican flavors within the beloved, unassuming tortilla.

Comparison Chart

Tortilla Type

Typically use corn tortillas
Commonly use larger, flour tortillas

Sauce Application

Externally coated with chili sauce
Sauce, if any, is typically inside


Less portable, often eaten with a fork
Highly portable and hand-held

Common Ingredients

Meat, cheese, beans, chili sauce
Meat, rice, beans, vegetables, cheese, salsa

Serving Style

Served drenched in sauce
Served dry with optional side sauces

Enchiladas and Burritos Definitions


This dish sometimes features a variety of toppings such as sour cream, lettuce, and cheese.
Sylvia adorned the enchiladas with shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, and a generous dollop of sour cream.


A burrito is a Mexican dish consisting of a flour tortilla wrapped around a variety of fillings like beans, meat, and rice.
The food truck on the corner makes the best burritos, filled with juicy beef and savory beans.


A Mexican dish of rolled tortillas filled typically with meat, and covered with chili sauce.
The chef prepared chicken enchiladas that were smothered in a rich, spicy sauce.


Burritos often contain several ingredients inside, which might include vegetables, cheeses, and sauces.
The vegetarian burritos were filled with grilled peppers, onions, and melted cheese.


Enchiladas are often baked after being assembled with fillings and sauce.
After assembling the enchiladas, Maria placed them in the oven to absorb the flavors of the chili sauce.


The burrito’s flour tortilla is typically larger and softer than those used for other dishes like tacos.
The chef carefully warmed the large, pliable tortillas before rolling them tightly around the burritos' fillings.


Enchiladas can be filled with a myriad of ingredients, including vegetables or different types of meat.
Vegan enchiladas, filled with seasoned vegetables, offered a hearty option for non-meat eaters.


Burritos can be eaten as a handheld food, with fillings securely wrapped inside the tortilla.
Sarah enjoyed her burritos on the go, appreciating the ease with which she could eat them without utensils.


The sauce used for enchiladas usually contains chili peppers and is vital for its signature taste.
The homemade sauce, rich with fiery chili peppers, was liberally poured over the enchiladas before baking.


Often, burritos are associated with breakfast versions, incorporating eggs, potatoes, and breakfast meats.
Breakfast burritos from the local cafe, filled with scrambled eggs and crispy bacon, became our Sunday morning tradition.


A tortilla rolled and stuffed usually with a mixture containing meat or cheese and served with a sauce spiced with chili.


A flour tortilla wrapped around a filling, as of beef, beans, or cheese.


Plural of enchilada


Plural of burrito


Infl of burrito


What is a common filling for burritos?

Common fillings for burritos include beans, rice, meat, cheese, and sometimes vegetables.

How spicy are enchiladas?

The spiciness of enchiladas can vary widely depending on the type and amount of chili used in the sauce.

Do burritos always contain beans?

While beans are a common ingredient, burritos can be made without them and with fillings of your choice.

Are burritos traditionally Mexican?

Yes, burritos originated in Mexico, specifically in the northern regions.

What is the main ingredient in enchiladas?

The main ingredient in enchiladas is typically a corn tortilla, filled with meats or cheese, and covered with chili sauce.

Can enchiladas be made vegetarian?

Absolutely, enchiladas can be filled with various vegetables, cheeses, or meat alternatives.

Are enchiladas served with side dishes?

Often, enchiladas are served with side dishes like rice and refried beans.

Can enchiladas be made with flour tortillas?

While traditionally made with corn tortillas, enchiladas can be made with flour tortillas as a variant.

What is the nutritional content of a burrito?

Nutritional content can vary widely depending on ingredients and portion sizes.

Can I use whole wheat tortillas for burritos?

Yes, you can use whole wheat tortillas for a healthier burrito variant.

Is there a dessert version of enchiladas?

While not traditional, dessert enchiladas, with sweet fillings and sauces, can be created.

Can burritos be made spicy?

Yes, burritos can be made spicy by adding hot peppers, spicy sauces, or seasonings to the fillings.

Are burritos gluten-free?

Traditional burritos with flour tortillas contain gluten, but gluten-free tortillas can be used as a substitute.

What distinguishes a burrito from a wrap?

Burritos have specific cultural roots and traditional fillings, while wraps have a broader definition and can contain a wide variety of ingredients.

Are burritos always wrapped in aluminum foil?

Not always, but burritos are often wrapped in foil to maintain their shape and warmth, especially for takeout.

Can I make enchiladas without an oven?

Traditional enchiladas are baked, but stovetop versions can be explored for an alternative.

What is the most popular type of meat used in enchiladas?

Chicken and beef are commonly used, though variations with pork or other meats can also be found.

What cheese is typically used in enchiladas?

Common cheeses for enchiladas include cheddar, Monterey Jack, and queso fresco.

Are burritos suitable for a vegetarian diet?

Yes, burritos can be made vegetarian by using plant-based fillings like beans, rice, and vegetables.

Can enchiladas be frozen for later use?

Yes, enchiladas can be frozen and reheated, making them a convenient make-ahead meal.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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