Runner recipes: DIY Taco Bell crunch wraps


Katrina Singleton

The final product is just as tasty as the original!

Katrina Singleton, News Editor

With the quarantine making it harder to go to our favorite restaurants, the ingredients you can find out at your local grocery stores can help bring your favorite meals straight to your dinner table. I was able to recreate Taco Bell’s signature crunch wrap at home in under 15 minutes and it tastes even better than the original!

Yield: 4 crunch wraps
Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: approximately 20 minutes
Total time: approximately 25 minutes

¼ pound of ground beef

Katrina Singleton
Using the tortilla’s cut out center helps ensure that all of the delicious toppings remain inside the crunch wrap during the cooking process.

1 standard can of refried beans
1 yellow onion, diced
Shredded lettuce
½ a tomato, diced
8 large tortillas
4 tostada shells
2 cups nacho cheese
2-3 cups shredded cheese of choice. Shredded Mexican cheese blends typically are the closest to what Taco Bell uses
1 tablespoon of unsalted butter
Sour cream, to preference
Salt and pepper, to taste
½-1 cup of vegetable oil

Place a saucepan over medium heat, and add the diced onions along with some butter. While the onion cooks, add salt and pepper to taste.

After the onions have cooked for at least 3-5 minutes, add in the ground beef and continue to cook until the meat has browned. Adding onions to the ground beefs enhances the flavor of the meat.

In a pot, add your refried beans. They need to be heated using medium heat until they reach the preferred consistency.

Note: the original crunch wrap does not have beans, but it does add a nice texture and flavor to this version.

Katrina Singleton
Cooking the crunch wrap in vegetable oil helps melt the cheese and give it that familiar crispiness.

To prepare the tortilla for the building process of the crunch wrap, use the tostada shell as a stencil. Place the tostada shell in the center of one large tortilla. Take a knife and cut out the center of the tortilla, following the edges of the tostada. Set both the tostada shell and center to the side for later. Edges from the cut-out tortillas can be tossed.

In a new pan, add a small amount of the vegetable oil; it should be a light layer that covers the bottom of the pan. Heat the vegetable oil over medium-low heat.

Use a new tortilla as the base of the crunch wrap. If you are using beans, take a spoon and spread a thin layer on the tortilla. The next layer will be the ground beef mixed with diced onions. Then, add your cheeses. Once they have been added, place the tostada shell on top.

Once you’ve added your initial ingredients and tostada, add sour cream, and top it with the shredded lettuce and diced tomatoes.

Now it’s time to grab the tortilla’s center that was cut out earlier, and place that on top of all the layers. Then begin to wrap the base tortilla around the top.

Once the wrapping is complete, carefully place the crunch wrap, wrapped side first into the pan with the warm oil. Cook for about 3-5 minutes on each side, or until it has reached the desired crispiness.

You now have a homemade crunch wrap that is ready to enjoy!

Do you have a recipe that’s perfect for college students that you’d love to share? Send it in to The Runner at [email protected]!