It was here, then it was gone, then it returned, then it ran out, and now it's back again — apparently for good this time.
Taco Bell’s cult-favorite menu item, the Mexican Pizza, will be coming back as a permanent menu item on Sept. 15. Taco Bell CEO Mark King first told Fortune the good news in a July 29 interview, explaining the truth behind some of the drama the fast-food titan has faced with the popular option.
“It’s going to be relaunched mid-September and it’s going to be a permanent item,” Taco Bell CEO Mark King said to Fortune. “I had more feedback—hate mail!—over the removal of Mexican pizza [than any other time].”
Who knew seasoned beef and refried beans placed between two tortilla shells could cause so much tumult? The Mexican Pizza has been through a lot — and its backstory is almost as varied as the sauce, three-cheese blend and tomatoes placed atop it.
After appearing on the menu for years from its invention in 1985, the item, which was first named the "Pizzazz Pizza," was abruptly discontinued in 2020 due to the pandemic, according to Taco Bell’s CEO.
“It was time consuming to make,” King said. “It also had a number of specific items that were only for the Mexican Pizza. When we went into COVID-19, we simplified the menu…trying to make it simpler for the team members.”
In response, a Change.org petition was created, and it received a whopping 171,702 signatures. With longtime Mexican Pizza fan Doja Cat's help, Taco Bell then brought back the menu item in spring 2022, even apologizing to its team members for every time they had to answer “When is Mexican Pizza coming back?” Unfortunately, that joy was short-lived and the bean-and-cheese pizza item sold out of a six-month supply in record time.
According to King, when they brought back the item, sales were seven times higher than before it was removed from the menu in the first place, and Taco Bell’s 7,600 stores were out of the Mexican Pizza in less than two months.
TODAY Food reached out to Taco Bell for comment on the Mexican Pizza’s victorious return, and the chain let us know that it's as pumped about its return as fans and that it even set up a Mexican Pizza FAQ on its website.
"Taco Bell’s Mexican Pizza is coming back. Again!" a Taco Bell spokesperson told TODAY, adding that the longtime staple was among several items pulled in 2020 as the restaurant looked to streamline its offerings. "Much to fan’s delight, the Mexican Pizza will return as a permanent menu item September 15, with the same ingredients as always."
The spokesperson also said that this late summer return is sooner than it first anticipated when shortages hit earlier this year, and that the fast-food juggernaut worked quickly to restock the beloved menu item.
The official Taco Bell Twitter account also confirmed the news of the menu item’s return on Tuesday, tweeting that “The beans have been spilled."
“Waking up to this news is like waking up to Christmas morning, Halloween, and the Super Bowl all at the same time. #Mexicanpizza is back, baby!” said one user on Twitter. “Hold my spot in line.”
“Keep it on the menu and NEVER remove it ever again,” tweeted someone else.
“Thank God!! I missed last time and I was devastated, lol,” commented another person on Instagram.
While most of the reaction is joyous, many uses on social media are treating Taco Bell much like a codependent beau. Lots of Twitter users are using the announcement to beg for other items to be brought back like the now-discontinued XXL Grilled Stuft Burrito, the Toasted Cheddar Chalupa and the Caramel Apple Empanada.
“Jesus, this rollercoaster is worse than my last relationship,” said one Instagram user, summing up the atmosphere around this whole situation.