Taco Bell restaurants nationwide have rolled out a dairy-based coffee creamer and a new coffee drink with support from dairy checkoff food scientists.
The vanilla creamer replaces a non-dairy product and will become a permanent offering at more than 7,500 Taco Bell locations in the United States. The shelf-stable creamer also was used in the checkoff-created Pineapple Whip Freeze and Island Berry Freeze beverages that previously appeared on Taco Bell’s menu.
Taco Bell consumers who order 12-ounce hot or 20-ounce iced coffee drinks have the option of adding the creamer. The Dairy Management Inc. (DMI) product research team worked with the checkoff-funded Midwest Dairy Center at the University of Minnesota to create the creamer in 2020.
The creamer also is featured in the Cinnabon Delights Coffee, which is available at participating U.S. locations for a limited time. DMI dairy scientist Kimber Lew led the creation workstream and said it demonstrates the chain’s desire to grow its breakfast business.
“We’re really excited for this because we are putting a lot of emphasis into getting consumers to think more about starting their mornings at Taco Bell,” Lew said. “Creating a coffee that has dairy and the iconic, crave-able Cinnabon Delights flavor was a no-brainer.”
Lew said the creamer and Cinnabon Delights Coffee are further proof of Taco Bell’s openness to menu innovations featuring dairy.
“This demonstrates how Taco Bell is leaning in on dairy in multiple avenues,” Lew says. “It’s not just about cheese and reduced-fat sour cream use; it’s about exploring other ways to elevate the consumer experience with the deliciousness of dairy. This shows the strength of our partnership.”
Heather Mottershaw, vice president of pipeline innovation and product development for Taco Bell, said these additions greatly enhance the chain’s breakfast menu.
“These fit very well with our strategy of growing our breakfast business and offering a premium coffee drink and creamer made from dairy,” Mottershaw says. “We are very grateful for the checkoff’s continued support to lead the way with dairy innovation that resonates very well with our consumers.”