National Burrito Day: Here's the origin of the burrito and how to make yours at home

Vegan burrito bowl. Picture: The South African Mushroom Farmers' Association

Vegan burrito bowl. Picture: The South African Mushroom Farmers' Association

Published Apr 3, 2024


The first Thursday of April marks National Burrito Day! This special day honours the popular Mexican dish and its delicious ingredients.

You may love burritos, but do you know their history?

The word burrito first appeared in the Dictionary of Mexicanisms in 1895. The Guanajuato region of Mexico uses the term which means little donkey in Spanish. It may stem from the appearance of the packs and bedrolls donkeys used to carry.

In other regions of Mexico, similar types of food are known as flauta. The burrito was introduced in the US in the 1930s at the El Cholo Spanish Café in Los Angeles.

Since then, the burrito has found its way to menus globally.

Depending on the region or restaurant, you can find burritos filled with everything from french fries to fried fish. The varieties are endless, and if you know what to order, you can get the whole thing smothered in cheese.

Another beauty of burritos is you can customise them to suit your taste, but the essentials are beans, protein (meat or vegetarian) and salsa, all wrapped up in a flour tortilla.

Vegetables, sour cream, guacamole, cheese and rice are also frequently added to the mix – although there is much debate about whether rice truly belongs in a burrito.

Burritos can be enjoyed by nearly everyone, making it one of the most widely eaten Mexican dishes worldwide. National Burrito Day gives you the perfect opportunity to fill your hungry belly with your favourite Mexican flavours.

Courtesy of the South African Mushroom Farmers' Association, here is a vegan burrito bowl recipe that you can make at home to celebrate.

Vegan burrito bowl. Picture: The South African Mushroom Farmers’ Association

Vegan burrito bowl

Serves: 4


15ml avocado oil

250g white button mushrooms, thickly sliced

45ml hoisin sauce

400g cooked brown rice

2 baby cos lettuces, leaves separated

2 fresh corn, cooked and grilled

1 red pepper, roasted and sliced

1 avocado, sliced

1 can black beans, drained

45ml olive oil

15ml rice wine vinegar

Salt and milled black pepper

To serve

Fresh coriander leaves

Lime wedges

Gluten-free chips or nachos


Heat the oil in a pan and fry the mushrooms for 3 minutes.

Add the hoisin sauce and cook for 2 minutes.

Arrange the brown rice in the serving bowls and arrange the lettuce leaves on top.

Followed by grilled mushrooms, corn, peppers, avocado, and black beans.

Whisk the olive oil, vinegar salt, and milled black pepper together and drizzle over the salad. Enjoy!