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Quinoa-stuffed burritos? Chipotle testing quinoa as a healthier base option

The Mexican Grill chain is hoping the trendy seed will help boost sales.
/ Source: TODAY

In the restaurant world, nothing says "I'm trying to be healthy and trendy" quite like having quinoa on the menu.

Though the versatile food has been "in" for quite some time, Chipotle just got the memo and is currently serving up the super-seed that’s been sweeping rice off the dinner table at its public test kitchen in New York City.

Chipotle gives quinoa a go at New York City test kitchen.
Chipotle gives quinoa a go at New York City test kitchen.Chipotle

“Chipotle’s red and gold quinoa can give your bowl, burrito or salad an extra nutritional kick and has a delicious nutty flavor. It’s made by tossing hot quinoa with citrus juice, rice bran oil, and freshly chopped cilantro and has a hint of cumin,” Chipotle’s public relations and communications manager Quinn Kelsey told TODAY Food by email. “We look forward to hearing what people think.”

News of the potential option to lighten up burrito bowls with quinoa is sending some food lovers into a fast-casual frenzy.

Others consumers still remain wary of Chipotle’s attempts to win back patrons after repeated issues involving food-borne illnesses, one of which sickened dozens of diners with the gastrointestinal disease norovirus at a location near Boston College in 2015.

One unimpressed Tweeter replied to the news: “Cool, now even vegans can enjoy some Norovirus.”

Another added:

In its continuing quest to keep winning over fans of Mexican food, Chipotle recently hired Taco Bell’s former CEO Brian Niccol. Last fall, they also added queso the menu, a dish which initially received poor reviews, but the chain has since tweaked the recipe to make the liquid cheese dip creamier.