Unless you've grown out of boozy 2am Crunchwrap runs (hopefully, you have), the words "Taco Bell" are all but synonymous with Mexican fast food. Meanwhile, Chipotle -- even after recent food safety troubles -- remains as the ubiquitous, go-to quick burrito place. However, despite their size and popularity, both tortilla titans and other establishment taco purveyors fell behind a much smaller rival in recent survey of America's favorite fast-food Mexican chains. And you've probably never heard of it.
In its annual consumer survey of quick service restaurants, industry research firm Market Force Information named Taco Bueno as the nation's favorite in its Mexican fast food brand category. The chain, which opened its first restaurant in Abilene, Texas back in 1967, currently runs fewer than 200 restaurants in seven states, including Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Oklahoma, and Texas, according to a report by Munchies. The study, based on results from 10,000 people across the country, puts Taco Bueno well above burrito heavyweights like Chipotle and Qdoba, both of which tied for first place in MFI's ranking last year.