Chi-Chi’s Chicken Chimichangas with Mexi-sauce

Chi-Chi's Chicken Chimichangas with Mexi-sauce

A copycat recipe for the beloved chicken chimichangas from the now closed Chi-Chi’s restaurant. This version is baked rather than fried and calls for using shredded rotisserie chicken, a great shortcut that makes this another quick and easy meal.

I used what I had on hand – grilled chicken and sauteed it with onion, garlic and jalapeno along with smoky spices like chile powder and cumin to make the filling. Refried beans go down first on a flour tortilla, adding a delicious creaminess to them. The beans are followed by the chicken mixture and cheese. They go in the oven for a quick bake where the tortilla transforms into this crunchy, flaky wrapper that we all loved, thanks to the vegetable oil and butter mixture that gets brushed over top. The mexi-sauce finishes it off with a little kick of green chile heat. My Mom said these were the best thing she’s eaten in a month and that’s saying a lot because we’ve had some pretty decent meals.

Chi-Chi's Chicken Chimichangas with Mexi-sauce

Chi Chi’s Chicken Chimichangas
(adapted from Food Network)

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, diced (remove seeds for less heat)
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
sea or kosher salt
1 small tomato, chopped, plus more for topping
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 1/2 cups shredded rotisserie chicken or cooked chicken, cut into bite-size pieces
1/4 cup sour cream, plus more for serving
1 (15-ounce) can refried beans
4 (10-inch) flour tortillas
1 cup shredded Monterrey jack cheese, plus more for topping
Mexi-sauce, for topping (recipe below)
Shredded lettuce, for topping
Mexican rice, for serving

1. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Melt the butter with 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a skillet; transfer to a bowl. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in the skillet and add the onion, garlic and jalapeno, cook over medium-low heat until soft. Add the chili powder, cumin, cinnamon and 1 teaspoon salt; toast 30 seconds. Add the tomato and cilantro and cook until slightly dry, about 2 minutes. Stir in the chicken and sour cream and warm through. Remove from the heat.

2. Brush a rimmed baking sheet with some of the butter-oil mixture. Spread 2 tablespoons refried beans down the center of each tortilla, leaving a 2-inch border on both ends. Top with 1 cup chicken mixture and 1/4 cup cheese. Fold in the ends and roll up.

3. Put the chimichangas seam-side down on the baking sheet; brush with the butter-oil mixture. Bake 8 to 10 minutes per side, brushing again after you flip. Top with the sauce, more cheese, lettuce and tomato. Serve with rice and the remaining beans.

Chi-Chi’s Mexi-sauce:

1/2 cup onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
pinch of each: chile powder, cumin, sugar and salt
2 (4 ounce) cans green chiles, drained and rinsed
1 cup chicken broth

Saute 1/2 cup chopped onion and 2 chopped garlic cloves in a skillet over medium-low with heat in a tablespoon or two of vegetable/olive oil. Add a pinch each of chili powder, cumin, sugar and salt; cook 30 seconds. Stir in two 4-ounce cans chopped green chiles and cook 2 minutes. Add 1 cup chicken broth and simmer until thickened, then puree. Stir in 1/4 cup chopped cilantro.

Printable Recipe

Chi-Chi's Chicken Chimichangas with Mexi-sauce

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  1. Debbi Does Dinner He says

    Congrats on making it through! I saw that and was pleased as punch to see you advance. Can't wait to see what you come up with next!So is ChiChi's officially gone everywhere? I didn't know if they were just locally gone or gone, gone. These look great though. If I made them, would they be a Copy of Reeni's Copy of Chi Chi's Enchilada's? That would be a mouthful! (a delicious one though!)

  2. BeadedTail says

    I remember Chi-Chi's Chimis! Yum! Congratulations on making it to the 3rd round Reeni!Hugs to Moon!

  3. Jaime and Jen DISH says

    Oh man, this chimichanga looks SO GOOD!!!!!!!!! Love it! Thanks for sharing the recipe!!!!!

  4. Julie says

    Ah, nothing like a good chimi! I think the pics look great, they've got my mouth watering :)

  5. Brenda says

    Reeni, I'm cracking up. We keep making the same recipes!!! I'm envious of your pics though, I was never able to get a pic of the inside of the chimichanga. They just didn't come out. Yours are gorgeous. I'm making the Feta Tart Sunday that you made last week, lol. Hey, great minds think alike, eh? And congrats on making it to the next round!!!! :o)

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