Air Fryer Chimichangas

Ready in less than an 30 minutes, this Air Fryer Chimichanga Recipe is so easy to throw together! Loaded with shredded Mexican chicken, refried beans and cheese, it gets air fried and then smothered in simple homemade queso. The outside gets just as crispy as baking and is much healthier than the restaurant version!

Love making healthy Mexican dishes at home? Try my Huevos Rancheros for brunch this weekend, and my easy Chicken Enchiladas are a family favorite!

 An air fryer chimichanga on a white plate with silverware, refried beans, and salad.

My husband and I are obsessed with our Air Fryer. We love coming up with new ways to use it and it never dissapoints! Food cooks in no time and is always golden brown and crispy with out frying. Win-win!

This Air Fryer Chimichanga recipe comes together in just over 30 minutes. Loaded with shredded Mexican chicken and cheese, and topped with homemade queso blanco, a few black olives, and some Pico de Gallo, they are absolutely delicious.

They are perfect for the whole family, and such a great easy weeknight dinner option. Feel free to skip the diced chilies if the kids aren’t a fan of the heat!

What you’ll need for this Air Fryer Chimichanga recipe

Chicken Chimichangas

  • Tortillas: I prefer 8-inch flour tortillas, however, you can use a gluten-free tortilla if needed.
  • Shredded chicken: I always make my tried and true Shredded Chicken recipe whenever I need shredded chicken. It’s juicy, moist and so flavorful! Shredded rotisserie chicken is also a great option.
  • Onion: Sautéed onion adds a little sweetness and onion flavor to the chicken.
  • Herbs & spices: Oregano, cumin, and chili powder are common Mexican herbs and spices, and really make these Air Fryer Chimichangas taste authentic.
  • Tomato sauce: You can use canned tomato sauce, or blend a can of chopped tomatoes if that’s what you have on hand.
  • Diced green chilies: Diced green chilies add heat! Skip it if you’re not a fan of spice. Substitute a diced jalapeño if needed.
  • Cheese: Shredded cheddar cheese or Monterey Jack cheese are perfect for this recipe.
  • Refried beans: Homemade refried beans are the best for this recipe, however, feel free to use store-bought instead.

Homemade White Queso

  • Cheese: It is important to use American cheese slices. They melt perfectly and are the secret to that restaurant style Queso we all love!
  • Milk & butter: Thin the queso down, adding creaminess and richness at the same time.
  • Diced green chilies: For a kick of spice I added diced green chilies. Feel free to dice one jalapeño and add that instead.
  • Seasoning: Cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika ad a ton of flavor! It’s delicious!

Serve with black olives, shredded lettuce, and Pico de Gallo!

4 air fryer chimichangas on a white plate with salad.

How to make Air Fryer Chimichangas

  1. Sauté onion: Add 1 tbsp of oil to a large skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add in onion and cook for 3-4 minutes or until the onions start to get tender and caramelized.
  2. Bloom spices: Add in the remaining 1 tbsp of oil. Stir in oregano, cumin, and chili powder and cook for 1-2 minutes.

Onions sauteeing in a white pan.

3. Stir in tomato sauce and green chilies.

4. Cook for 1-2 minutes then add in cooked shredded chicken and toss to coat.

Chicken cooking in a white pan.

5. Assemble: Lay out the tortillas and top each air fryer chimichanga with 1/4 cup refried beans, 1/2 cup chicken mixture, and 1/4 cup shredded cheese.

Filling on a tortilla with cheese.

6. Roll them up: Like you would a burrito then brush with oil. You can also spray them with nonstick cooking spray too.

Tortillas being brushed with oil.

7. Preheat Air Fryer: To 400 degrees. Spray the metal insert of the air fryer with nonstick cooking spray. Add in the chimichangas seam side down. (I had to cook mine in batches)

Cook: For 4 minutes, flip then cook for an additional 4 minutes. Remove the air fryer chimichangas and allow them to cool on a plate for a few minutes before serving.

Chimichangas in an air fryer.

How to make Homemade Queso

It’s so simple! All you have to do is add all of the ingredients to a medium saucepan. Cook on medium heat whisking occasionally until the cheese is fully melted and the sauce is smooth. Set aside and keep on low until you are ready to serve. The sauce thickens as it sits so feel free to add a splash more milk if needed.

 

Homemade queso in a pot with a whisk.

Tips for Success

  • Use your preferred kind of tortilla (low-carb, gluten-free, etc.). Make sure the tortilla is soft (so it doesn’t break when folding) and about 8-inches in diameter.
  • Make chimichangas with other meat: Try shredded pork, ground beef, ground chicken, or ground turkey.
  • Skip the diced chilies in both the air fryer chimichanga recipe and white queso recipe if you don’t want them to be spicy.

What do you eat with chimichangas?

What is the difference between a chimichanga and a burrito?

Chimichangas and burritos are very similar, however, the main difference is that you deep-fry chimichangas. In fact, the simplest definition of a chimichanga is a deep-fried burrito. It is believed that a burrito was placed in a deep fryer, resulting in what is now known as Mexican chimichangas.

 An air fryer chimichanga sliced open on a white plate with silverware, refried beans, and salad.

More easy air fryer recipes to try

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Air Fryer Chimichangas

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6 chimichangas

Ready in less than an 30 minutes, this Air Fryer Chimichanga Recipe is so easy to throw together! Loaded with shredded Mexican chicken, refried beans and cheese, it gets air fried and then smothered in simple homemade queso. The outside gets just as crispy as baking and is much healthier than the restaurant version!

Ingredients

Chimichangas

  • 2 tbsps olive oil, divided
  • 6 (8-inch) flour tortilla
  • 4 cups cooked and shredded chicken
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 4 ounce can diced green chilies
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar cheese or Monterey Jack cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups refried beans

Homemade White Queso

  • 1/2 lb american cheese slices, cut into cubes
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4 ounce can diced green chilies
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp paprika

For Serving

Instructions

Images:
  • Sauté onion: Add 1 tbsp of oil to a large skillet and heat over medium high heat. Add in onion and cook for 3-4 minutes or until the onions start to get tender and caramelized.
    Bloom spices: Add in the remaining 1 tbsp of oil. Stir in oregano, cumin and chili powder and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  • Stir in tomato sauce and green chilies.
  • Cook for 1-2 minutes then add in cooked shredded chicken and toss to coat.
  • Assemble: Lay out the tortillas and top each one with 1/4 cup refried beans, 1/2 cup chicken mixture and 1/4 cup shredded cheese.
  • Roll them up: Like you would a burrito then brush with oil. You can also spray them with nonstick cooking spray too.
  • Preheat Air Fryer: To 400 degrees. Spray the metal insert of the air fryer with nonstick cooking spray.
    Add in the chimichangas seam side down. (I had to cook mine in batches)
    Cook: For 4 minutes, flip then cook for an additional 4 minutes.
  • Serve: Immediately with homemade white Queso, shredded lettuce, Pico De Gallo and black olives. Enjoy!

Homemade White Queso

  • Add all of the ingredients to a medium saucepan. Cook on medium heat whisking occasionally until the cheese is fully melted and the sauce is smooth. Set aside and keep on low until you are ready to serve. The sauce thickens as it sits so feel free to add a splash more milk if needed.

Recipe Notes

*Nutrition Information is for one chimichanga. It does not include the Queso.

Nutrition Facts
Air Fryer Chimichangas
Amount Per Serving
Calories 465 Calories from Fat 207
% Daily Value*
Fat 23g35%
Saturated Fat 9g56%
Polyunsaturated Fat 3g
Monounsaturated Fat 8g
Cholesterol 98mg33%
Sodium 1069mg46%
Potassium 415mg12%
Carbohydrates 27g9%
Fiber 5g21%
Sugar 5g6%
Protein 36g72%
Vitamin A 644IU13%
Vitamin C 6mg7%
Calcium 291mg29%
Iron 4mg22%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Mexican
Keyword: Air Fryer, Chimichangas, Leftover rotisserie chicken