Sunday, March 13, 2011

Chipotle -- Fast Food with Integrity

Although Chipotle isn't a diet burrito (regular burrito can range upwards of 1,200 calories depending on what you put in it), I have noticed that I never got sick eating there.  The same cannot be said about Baja Fresh, Rubios, or La Salsa.  Ironically, I also never got sick from eating tacos at dingy taquerias in Cabo or local taco trucks.

That being said, I have never really thought much about the food until today when they wrapped my SO's burrito in a gold foil vs. their usual silver.  I became curious and logged onto their site.  There is this very interesting interview that Nightline had with the founder of Chipotle.

I welcome people to definitely check it out.  I believe the video file is linked here.

The goal of Chipotle is "Fast Food with Integrity".  This means the company only uses free range pork, chicken, (and most) cows in their ingredients.  It is pretty cool to see the pigs and the chicken roaming free in the interview, out in the forest enjoying themselves.  Since they're going to end up on my dinner plate anyways, they should enjoy the short life they have, right?  This is in contrast to the commercialized farms where all the chicken and pigs are locked up indoors in cramped pens. They also try to be as transparent as possible with their ingredients.  Maybe it's just good marketing.  Either way, their food tastes better, fresher, and does not get me sick.  This may be because I'm eating "real" food, instead of some highly processed 38% meat product (please refer to Taco Bell).

I frequented Chipotle before I went on a diet, but I have realized that I can still enjoy the food there as long as I am aware of what I can and cannot order with my burrito.  I usually target burrito bowls or their tacos when I am craving some carbs.  I no longer order a regular burrito since the flour tortilla alone has 290 calories -- which is equivalent to a sugary protein bar!

I avoid the rice (although I love their cilantro lime jasmine rice), beans, guacamole, sour cream, and cheese.  Although this removes a lot of the Chipotle flavor I have come to know and love, their corn salsa makes up for some of that deficiency.

Following the formula above allows me to have a satisfying meal for between 400-500 calories.  Not too shabby when I'm limited to only 1,300-1,400 calories per day.

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