Taco Bell has always been a friend to vegetarians. Whether you're devouring bean burritos -- a menu item at the 'Bell for 50 years -- or eating a fancy Veggie Power Menu Bowl, the chain has always been a reliable fast food spot for those avoiding meat. Now, Taco Bell is taking its vegetarian-friendliness to the next level with a new, separate vegetarian section on its nationwide menu.
After testing the vegetarian menu across the country in recent months, the company is making it available to all, starting on September 12. Basically, the chain is carving out a fraction of its menu with vegetarians in mind and highlighting the "new" meatless menu items, most of which aren't exactly new (we're looking at you, bean burrito). To be clear, people have been ordering Taco Bell favorites with black beans in place of the usual meat options for years now.
Under the "Vegetarian Favorites" section of the menu, taco eaters will find a list of menu items that are American Vegetarian Association (AVA) certified, including an official Black Bean Crunchwrap Supreme and Black Bean Quesarito. While T-Bell is pushing the bean-filled Crunchwrap and Quesarito as new menu items, they're not all that new to savvy vegetarian fans. In total, Taco Bell offers 13 AVA-certified menu items, though the ultra-customizable fast food chain carries 36 AVA-certified vegetarian ingredients that you can strategically customize to your vegetarian delight for years. Like, why not swap meat for beans in the new Cheddar Chalupa?
“At Taco Bell, we believe that vegetarian food shouldn’t be a compromise; it shouldn’t be limited to one item, and it shouldn’t be just for vegetarians,” Taco Bell’s Global Chief Food Innovation Officer, Liz Matthews, said in a press release. “For years, we’ve consistently proven that our vegetarian menu options are so craveable that even non-vegetarians unknowingly go veggie because they just love the taste. We’re committed to building on this insight and plan to further innovate in this growing space.”
In a world where concern with climate change is expanding and intake of meat is reducing, the rise of vegetarian-friendly foods is permeating throughout the fast food realm. There's Impossible Whoppers, tests of Beyond fried chicken at KFC, and now -- officially official -- a veggie-filled menu at Taco Bell (just please, for the love of God, please don't kill off the fiery Doritos Locos Taco).