Last year, popular Tex-Mex fast food restaurant chain was named the healthiest fast food chain in America. This was due in part to Taco bell revamping its menu to reduce sodium and expand its menu to include more diverse food options. One of those considered food options was to provide vegetarian or vegan options to attract more customers.
Now, Taco Bell has announced that its popular and well-known dishes will have vegetarian options, including the seven layer burrito. Customers have been able to purchase vegetarian dishes from Taco Bell for decades, but this is the first time fully and uncustomized dishes have appeared on the menu.
The new vegetarian menu options will be a vegetarian crunchwrap supreme and a vegetarian quesarito, both of which are certified by the American Vegetarian Association. In place of meat, both of these menu items will have black beans inside of them. According to customers, The crunchwrap supreme has a retail price of $3.70 and the Quesarito has a retail price of $3.05.
“We’ve met with Beyond, we’ve met with Impossible, but I think what we’re proud of is that we’ve been doing vegetarian for 57 years,” according to the president of North American operations, Julie Felss Masino. Instead of a plant-based meat collaboration with Beyond Meat or Impossible, Taco Bell is making a vegetarian menu on its own.
Missy Schaaphok, manager of global nutrition and sustainability at Taco Bell, said, “Our goal is to find ways to incorporate more plant-forward options in the future without sacrificing the big, bold flavors and value.” Interested customers have already been able to try out these new menu items in the Dallas, TX area.
All in all, there are currently over eight million vegetarian combinations that customers can customize and order from Taco Bell. The chain uses refried pinto beans and black beans, which are American Vegetarian Association-certified vegan proteins. Taco Bell also has 28 certified vegan ingredients and all five sauce packets are vegan!