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Next time you have burrito night, try wrapping it up in a collard. These large, hearty leaves are great for holding a burrito together and they don’t have an overpowering leafy flavor.  Not to mention, they have a pretty impressive nutrient profile:

Over 100% of the daily value for Vitamin K – essential for bone health

Nearly 50% of eye-loving Vitamin A – enhances night vision and supports your immune system

15% of Folate – reduces inflammation and is critically important in pregnant women to reduce the risk of neural tube defects in women

20% Vitamin C – a potent antioxidant and immune system stimulant

collard wrapped burrito

In fact, most of the dark, leafy green vegetables have a similar nutrient profile – which is one of the reasons us dietitians like to push the greens so much 😉

Using leaves as wraps switches things up a bit and adds a variety of texture to your dish. Last year, I made these awesome Butternut Squash and Black Bean Burritos using a purple cabbage leaf. I love the black, orange and purple colors together. The more color you have in your meal, the more varied your nutrients are.

Vegetarian Burritos

These rice and bean burritos are topped with homemade guacamole, salsa, scallion and cilantro. Wrap it up in a collard leaf and you’ll think you just ordered something from a gourmet vegan cafe.

Serves 4-6

4-6 collard leaves, washed and dried

1.5 cups brown basmati rice, cooked (any rice will do)

1 can low sodium black beans, drained

1 medium red onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, minced

1 medium red bell pepper, chopped

1 bunch scallion, chopped (tips and stems)

2 small ripe avocados

1-2 TBS lime juice

1 TBS canola oil

1 TBS cumin + 2 tsp chili powder + 0.5 tsp cayenne pepper

1 handful cilantro, leaves torn off stem

salt and pepper


Scoop the avocado into a bowl and add the lime juice and 1/4 cup of the red onion. Mix and mash to your desired textured. I like to keep it a little chunky. Salt and pepper to taste – put aside.


Heat the oil in a large saute pan and cook the onion, pepper, spices and garlic until soft, about 7 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste.

Add the beans and cook until warm.

Serve it up!

Lay out a collard leaf and place about 1/2 cup rice with 1/4-1/2 cup beans in the center. Top with guacamole, salsa, cilantro and scallion. Roll it up and enjoy.


What creative ways are you using to wrap up foods?

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