| October 1, 2015

Cooking, Food & Drink, Travel & Leisure

Save Time and Money With Make-Ahead Breakfast Burritos

homemade sausage egg cheese burrito

I love me a good breakfast burrito.

They’re great for when you’re on the go, and if you’re generous with the stuffing, they can really fill you up.

But if you’re like most busy American men, you just don’t have time to whip up a breakfast burrito in the mornings. Sure, you could do one with just egg and cheese, but we all know the best part of a breakfast burrito is the copious amount of savory, meaty sausage, which takes a little while to cook. So you stop by a fast food joint to pick up a breakfast burrito, or you microwave the frozen variety you bought from the grocery store.

The thing is, stopping at a QuickTrip to pick up a breakfast burrito may not even save you that much time and it’s not saving you any money (the going rate for a QT burrito is $2.50 right now). And those store-bought pre-made burritos? They’re dinky. I have to eat two of them to fill me up and they’re always skimpy on the sausage.

contents of el monterey frozen burrito

The inside of an El Monterey breakfast burrito. Hey, where’s the beef? And by beef, I mean sausage.

What’s more, with the fast food and store-bought breakfast burritos, you’re getting a lot more additives and preservatives. Just take a look at the list of ingredients for El Monterey breakfast burritos:

el monterey frozen breakfast burrito ingredients list

Mmmm, sodium steroyl lactylate, sodium metabisulifite, L-cysteine, yellow no. 6……who’s hungry?

In an effort to save time and money as well as get the kind of breakfast burrito I like to chow down on in the morning, I spent an hour and a half one Saturday morning a few weeks ago making a batch of 14 man-sized, sausage-stuffed, egg and cheese burritos that I could freeze and re-heat for later. Now whenever I’m in the mood for a breakfast burrito, I just pull one out of the freezer, warm it up, and go to town.

Below I share the steps I took in preparing my make-ahead frozen breakfast burritos.

Ingredients and Prep Time

ingredients for homemade frozen breakfast burritos

You can make these burritos as simple or as complicated as you want. Just keep in mind the more ingredients you add, the more expensive and time-consuming they are to make. For my batch I went with the following ingredients:

  • 18 eggs
  • 14 flour tortillas
  • 1 bag of shredded cheese (the pic above has two bags, but I ended up just using one)
  • 2 16 oz. packages of breakfast sausage
  • 1 white onion
  • 2 green bell peppers

The above netted me 14 hefty-sized breakfast burritos.

Total cost for ingredients: $15.54

Cost per burrito: $1.11

Total prep time (including clean-up) was 1 hour and 30 minutes.

Compare that cost to the store-bought El Monterey breakfast burritos:

Total cost: $10.98 for 12 burritos

Cost per burrito: $.91

Then compare that to the cost of a McDonald’s breakfast burrito: $1.00

Yes, the El Monterey burritos were $.20 cheaper and the McDonald’s burrito $.11 cheaper. But the big advantage of the homemade burritos is that they’re, well, bigger. My burritos are at least 1.5X the size of these competitors, so you actually do save money when you’re comparing price per ounce. I also get less artificial additives and plenty of sausage in my burrito, which is how I like ’em.

How to Make the Burritos

Step 1: Prepare and Cook Onion and Pepper

chopping onion prevent tears by chewing gum

Tip from grandma: chew gum while chopping onions to prevent tears.

chopping green pepper on wooden cutting board

sauteing fying onions and bell peppers cast iron

Sauté for 10 minutes or so until softened.

Step 2: Cook Sausage

cooking frying sausage in cast iron skillet

28 ounces is a lot of sausage to cook, so it’s going to take some time. You can start getting the eggs ready while you’re waiting for it to cook. Then page through a copy of Manvotionals to feed your spirit in preparation for feeding your belly.

cooked browned sausage in cast iron skillet

After the sausage has been browned, eat a bit of it because sausage is good. After that, put it in a bowl and set it aside for the burrito building stage later on.

Step 3: Scramble Eggs

eggs in bowl for mixing scrambling

Crack 18 eggs into a giant bowl. Look at all those thwarted chicken embryos.

mix eggs with milk salt pepper scramble

Add a splash of milk and some salt and pepper. Scramble.

cooking eggs in cast iron skillet high heat

Cook eggs on high heat for large, dense egg curds.

Step 4: Build Burritos

tortilla shell on aluminum foil breakfast burritos

We’ve got all our ingredients prepared, so it’s time to start building. Place a tortilla on a medium-sized sheet of foil.

premade frozen homemade breakfast burrito sausage egg cheese

Pile on the ingredients to your heart’s desire. I started off with a layer of egg, followed by a generous helping of sausage, followed by some onion and pepper, and topped with some cheese.

Step 5: Wrap Burrito

wrapping folding homemade sausage breakfast burrito

I used my experience from years of watching Chipotle workers wrap giant burritos as a guide to my wrapping technique.

how to wrap homemade breakfast burrito

homemade frozen breakfast burrito wrapped aluminum foil

That looks like an awesome breakfast burrito. Don’t wrap the burritos in the foil right away. You want to let them cool a bit so you don’t build up condensation inside the foil and consequently create icy crystals on your burrito. Obviously, this means your whole kitchen counter will be filled with burritos resting on squares of foil. Alternatively, you can let all your ingredients cool, and then wrap each one up, foil and all. But I didn’t have the patience for that. Whatever route you go, repeat this burrito-building process until you’ve used all your ingredients.

Step 6: Place in Freezer

homemade frozen sausage breakfast burritos in freezer

homemade sausage breakfast burritos in freezer

Write the date you cooked your burritos on the foil with a marker. They last about three weeks.

Step 7: Heat Up and Enjoy Your Burrito!

frozen breakfast burrito homemade sausage egg cheese

Loosely wrap your frozen burrito in a paper towel.

microwaving cooking homemade frozen breakfast burrito

Between 2:30 and 2:45 seems to be the right amount of time for warming up these burritos. Flip it over halfway though. When you take it out, let it cool a minute before you dig in.

how to make homemade breakfast burritos

Look at all that egg-y, sausage-y goodness. Aren’t you glad that even if you’re pressed for time in the morning, all you had to do was reach into the freezer and heat this baby up to enjoy a hot and hearty breakfast? This man-sized burrito will fill you up with plenty of muscle-building protein and healthy cholesterol, and get your day off to an awesome start.

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