Since starting a new job a few weeks ago that's made our daily routine a bit busier, I've been trying to rely on our slow cooker more for weeknight dinners to make the 5-5:30 block a little less intense. And since we regularly have something Mexican on Tuesday nights, this Slow Cooker Veggie-Packed Beef Burrito dinner is now firmly in the rotation. It's easy to get going in the morning, it makes plenty for dinner and lunches the next day, and it's super versatile. Oh and did I mention easy?
The beauty of this meal is that there is a nice amount of vegetables right in the mix so you don't have to worry about making additional sides, and those veggies add lots of flavor and moisture (and nutrition). They blend in though, so there aren't big chunks to raise alarm bells. You can make the rice a few days ahead, or even store the filling or prepared burritos in the freezer until you're ready to make this dinner. They hold together decently well without cheese, though everyone in my family loves these with cheese, so do add it if you can. Serve these burritos with salsa or sour cream for dipping and try not to stress if your toddler takes it apart and eats it in components. Because they very well might!
My 10 month old likes to feed herself the filling of these burritos, which again is pretty messy, but at least it makes her happy!
Nutrition-wise, there is iron and protein from the beef, Vitamins A and C and fiber from the veggies, and fiber and complex carbs for balanced energy from the rice and tortillas.
Slow Cooker Veggie-Packed Beef Burritos
If you want to make these vegetarian, try using 2 cups rinsed and drained black beans or pinto beans instead of the ground beef. Or, swap in ground lamb for ground beef for a yummy variation.
Makes: about two meals of 8 burritos (1/2 cup each) or one meal of larger burritos
1 red, orange or yellow bell pepper, diced (about 1 cup)
1 medium onion, peeled and diced (about 1 cup)
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced (about 4 cups)
4 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
1 pound ground beef
3/4 cup salsa or crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups rice, prepared according to package directions
Tortillas*, shredded lettuce, shredded cheese, and any other toppings you like!
- Place the bell pepper, onion, sweet potato, and garlic into a food processor. Grind until finely chopped. Add to a slow cooker along with the beef, salsa, and spices. Cover and cook on HIGH for 4-5 hours or LOW for 7-8 hours.
- Stir in prepared rice and let sit for 5 minutes.
- Place into warm tortillas and roll up into burritos.
*I use the smaller tortilla size here since they are a better size for little ones but do what you prefer.