By Brooke Mason
Let’s talk about fast food restaurants for a minute. When you think of fast food, what is the first place that comes to mind? For me, it’s McDonald’s. When I think of McDonald’s, I get this little cringe thinking about their food. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve eaten my fair share of McDonald’s. However, it seems like every year a new article comes out about how things are made at McDonald’s that make us all feel a little gross about eating there. But why do we keep going back? Because it’s cheap and it’s fast. And who can resist McDonald’s fries and their sweet tea? But what if I told you there is a place that is just as fast, only costs a few bucks more, is way healthier, and uses fresh ingredients? You’d probably still go to McDonald’s, but that’s okay.
Chipotle is a southwest style Mexican Grill restaurant. They aren’t labeled a fast food restaurant; however, their service is extremely fast although they do not have a drive thru. Before you decide not to go because you don’t want to go in the store, read the rest of this article first. Chipotle is one of the best “fast food” restaurants, and here’s why.
Good Quality Food and Ingredients
The food is made fresh every day with the best ingredients possible. There are no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. No freezers, can openers, or shortcuts. They are one of the first national restaurant brands to commit to goals on local and organic produce, only using responsibly raised meat with some of the highest animal welfare standards and no added hormones. You can watch them prepare the food from the counter and not have to worry about how it’s being cooked.
This is probably one of the healthiest fast food restaurants. You get good quality protein whether that’s through meat, plant-based meats, or beans. They have numerous veggie options. They even offer lifestyle-based meals. In their app you can set your nutrition preferences so it will only show you what you can eat based on your preferences. You can select vegan, non-dairy, or even some diets like Keto. In the app, they also display every food item’s calorie number. They even go so far to add the calorie number to every single topping they offer. They offer healthy drink options like organic lemonade, organic hibiscus lemonade, organic mandarin agua fresca, organic berry agua fresca.
Them: You’re keto?! wHaT dO yOu eVeN eAT?
— Chipotle (@ChipotleTweets) January 18, 2022
Chipotle offers so many different options compared to other fast food restaurants. They have six different meat protein options, which include chicken, steak, plant-based chorizo, barbacoa, carnitas, and sofritas, a plant-based protein. Two rice options being white rice or brown rice. Two bean options, black beans or pinto beans. Multiple topping options, which are, guacamole, fresh tomato salsa, roasted chili-corn salsa, tomatillo-green chili salsa, tomatillo-red chili salsa, sour cream, fajita veggies, cheese, lettuce, and queso blanco. But what do you do with all of these options? You first pick how you want your meal. You can choose either a burrito, burrito bowl, lifestyle bowl, quesadilla, salad, tacos, or even a kid’s meal. After that you build your own burrito or whatever option you choose. It’s like Subway, but for Mexican food.
You walk into Chipotle and go to the counter, and they immediately ask you what you want. Like I said before, it’s like Subway. You tell them what you want, and they make it right there in front of you. They cook the meat beforehand in batches and store everything in a steam table to keep it warm, like a buffet. However, they don’t put as much food out as a buffet would, so it does not go bad and go to waste. They’re constantly cooking the food to ensure they keep fresh food on the steam table. If you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to wait in line, just order through their app. They offer mobile orders and have them ready and place them on the pick up shelf for you to grab and go. Their mobile app is incredibly easy to use. The menu has pictures of everything, so you know what you’re getting. The app even saves your past orders and gives you an option to save your favorite orders for fast ordering next time. The mobile app has rewards points so you can get free stuff, too.
In 2018, Chipotle began a pilot program, recycling their used plastic gloves into waste bags that they use in 43% of their own restaurants. They diverted 50% of their waste from landfills during 2020. They even share their sustainability reports on their website.
Real Ingredients. Real Purpose. Real Flavor.
Overall, Chipotle is a great restaurant and I love eating there. It impresses me so much on how much they care about the food they are making and trying to keep the planet clean. I hope this article has made you want to try it or at least check it out. Thanks for reading.