Chipotle Mexican Grill announced Monday its “Plant-Powered” Lifestyle Bowl options, which include a new preconfigured organic plant-based protein “Vegan” bowl as well as a “Vegetarian” bowl that includes guacamole. Plant-Powered bowls are the first extensions in the brand’s Lifestyle Bowl offering, which launched earlier this year with Keto, Paleo, Whole30 and double protein diet-approved menu options.

Whether following a vegetarian, flexitarian, or vegan diet or just looking to make healthier choices, Chipotle’s customizable menu allows customers to select the items that best fit their needs. In 2014, Chipotle was an early entrant into the plant-based conversation, introducing its delicious, vegan protein option, Sofritas. Only a few years later, 7.5 million pounds of Sofritas were cooked up in 2018 alone. Made from certified organic soybeans grown domestically, the protein is then shredded and smothered in a blend of spices including poblano pepper, cumin and of course, chipotle chile, creating a delicious alternative to traditional meat without skimping on flavor.

“We’ve found that many people are increasingly looking for plant-based protein options, so we wanted to make it easy for our customers with digital shortcuts for these bowls,” saysChris Brandt, chief marketing officer of Chipotle. “Since introducing Sofritas five years ago, Chipotle has provided flavorful options for every lifestyle, while simultaneously doing something good for the planet.”

Hodo Foods, Chipotle’s soybean supplier, is also committed to food with integrity as the company partners with farmers in the Midwestern U.S. to buy non-GMO, organic soybeans that results in the highest quality plant-protein. “Chipotle’s founder first tasted our organic product in a California farmers market and together we collaborated to perfect Chipotle’s beloved Sofritas recipe incorporating fresh, delicious ingredients,” adds Minh Tsai, founder of Hodo Foods.

In addition to Chipotle’s commitment to offering consumers meat-free menu options, recently Sophie’s Seafood, a plant-based seafood alternative, was selected as one of the eight ventures in the Chipotle Cultivate Foundation’s first accelerator program, CHIPOTLE ALUMINARIES PROJECT.

Fast Casual, Menu Innovations, News, Chipotle