Taco Bell Launches Certified Vegetarian Menu

Taco Bell has released a certified vegetarian menu with 13 new items to please ethical eaters.

Taco Bell – an American fast food chain favored for its quasi-Mexican creations – will never be regarded as a health food establishment, but it is, at least, taking a step in the right direction by releasing a certified vegetarian menu for ethical eaters.

As Eater reports, the chain released a press release earlier this month sharing that its menu will now feature items certified by the American Vegetarian Association (AVA), which is “the industry recognized standard in vegetarian labeling.” Taco Bell says it is the first quick service restaurant to do this.

The chain is adding a vegetarian category to its website and mobile ordering app that features 13 AVA-certified items. The dishes available to consumers include offerings like the 7-Layer Burrito and the Cantina Power Veggie Bowl.

The certified-vegetarian menu follows: 

7-Layer Burrito

AM Grilled Taco – Egg & Cheese

Bean Burrito

Black Bean Burrito

Black Beans & Rice

Cantina Power Veggie Bowl

Cantina Power Veggie Burrito

Cheese Quesadilla

Cheese Roll-Up

Cheesy Bean & Rice

Double Tostada

Pintos ‘n Cheese

Biscuit Taco – Egg & Cheese

Again, it is a rookie mistake to think anything labeled vegetarian is the same as ‘healthy’, but minimizing items that feature meat will benefit the environment.

According to the release, customers can “hack the menu” and create vegetarian and vegan-friendly dishes with any of its 35 AVA-certified ingredients if they choose to do so. 26 of those items are also vegan. In addition, the chain allows customers to swap out meat in favor of beans to “create on of millions of different possible veggie-friendly dishes.” 

Said Brian Niccol, the CEO of Taco Bell: “vegetarians are not an afterthought.” Indeed, for the ‘quick service’ chain sells more than 350 million vegetarian menu items each year.

In an ingenious marketing move, Taco Bell also decided to be more transparent about what vegetarians and “flexitarians” can order. This move will no doubt benefit the fast food industry, as many consumers are opting to improve their diet to benefit their health and the environment.


2015 by Amanda Froelich

Photo Credit: Taco Bell