Chipotle has put the kibosh on a viral hack that enabled customers to drop about $3 for a burrito by using a wasteful bit of order finagling.
A July 7, a now-viral TikTok showed the menu hack that has since garnered a bit of controversy. In the video, which has been viewed over 2.6 million times, a woman orders a single taco through the app plus most of the free toppings and finally a tortilla, all on the side.
“This is important, you wanna get a tortilla on the side,” said the woman in the TikTok before being asked by her companion what the total is. “$3.35, but just wait until you see the amount of food that’s going to come out.”
The result, a bag full of individually filled to-go ramekins with each side, the tortilla and the rice are used to easily make a “regular burrito” which usually starts at about $9. The viral idea is certainly not the most environmentally conscious one, to be sure, as all those containers that were painstakingly filled by Chipotle workers likely are discarded as the back-alley burrito gets assembled.
So many customers on the Chipotle app were taking advantage of this hack that Chipotle workers across the country spoke anonymously to Business Insider about the problems it was causing for them at work. Those workers said that the orders were annoying, disruptive and interrupted the flow of the assembly line. That last point directly affected Chipotle worker’s hours as productivity for employees of the chain is linked to how many hours they get.
For its part, Chipotle heard about the TikTok cheat code for their burritos and changed their policy, limiting what folks can order from the Chipotle app. This means if you want a single taco with every side under the sun, you’ll have to do it to a Chipotle employee’s face in-store where they will likely give you a portion befitting your actual order.
“Guests are currently unable to order a single taco from our online ordering systems,” said Laurie Schalow, chief corporate affairs officer for Chipotle to TODAY Food in an emailed statement. “While we have long embraced customizations and even released our own hack menu, the current social media trend is resulting in a poor experience for our food, our employees and our customers waiting for orders.”
Back to the drawing board, menu hackers.