• chipotle, you listened! you really care!

    January 7th, 2010quarrygirlchipotle, LA restaurants, more restaurants (not LA), NYC

    since we wrote our open letter to chipotle, it appears as if they heard our plea and begun cooking the vegan gardein meat (aka garden blend) separately from all the real meat!

    i was first tipped off by a commenter, and then called the west chelsea location myself…and it appears that it’s true!!!!

    on the phone, chipotle said the garden blend is vegan. when i asked if the gardein is cooked separately than the meat, they replied, “of course it is! otherwise it wouldn’t be vegan!” they also said they made the decision to cook the gardein in a separate pan LAST WEEK after several people complained. ahem.

    so if you are lucky enough to live in NYC (i’m jealous), head on over to the west chelsea chipotle on 8th avenue between 17th and 18th street for a VEGAN GARDEIN BURRITO.

    oh and since we got chipotle’s attention with the last letter, maybe it wouldn’t hurt to ask for one more thing….

    dear chipotle,
    PLEASE bring vegan garden burrito to ALL YOUR LOCATIONS!!!! and if that’s not possible, and you can only bring it to one more storefront, please bring it to los angeles.
    i love you!

    there are a few chipotles in chelsea, and i have read some inaccurate info online about which location has the garden blend. so here is a map just to make sure you go to the right one:

    [googleMap name=”chipotle west chelsea” description=”where you lucky bastards can find vegan burritos” width=”570″]149 8th Ave New York, NY 10011[/googleMap]

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33 responses to “chipotle, you listened! you really care!” RSS icon

  • Saul - aka dadatamonkey for thats me

    Coolio well done 🙂

  • Leaving work right now to check it out. Will post again in 5 minutes.

  • good work! chipotle is great!

  • Also: there is Garden Blend at the Dupont Circle Chipotle location in DC.

  • all i want in life is gardein in a chipotle burrito from a la location 🙁 … and maybe some vegan tortillia soup from qdoba.. and shojin.. and a sassy mexican girlfriend

  • Well, as long as we’re asking for “one” more thing:
    Chipotle, please REPLACE your chicken with gardein, carnitas with jackfruit, and beef with faux.
    Thank you.

  • alex,
    It’s possible that Wolfgang Puck’s canned tortilla soup is vegan; check it out!

  • just got back from there. spoke to two people, and they both confirmed that the gardein is cooked separately since last week, when “corporate” told them to change “immediately” following “something in the internet”

    the thing was pretty damn tasty, too. I hope they roll it out everywhere.


  • This is the best news ever!!!! Chipotle, PLEASE bring it to California!

  • NICE! You’ve done it yet again, quarrygirl.com! You influenced change, and this time from a food chain, no less! Major props.

  • Regardless, read this bullshit from their website explaining how they care for the animals before butchering them, cutting them up and glorifying their carcasses.


    Most pigs do not spend their lives on open pastures, but live in Concentrated Animal Feed Operations, or CAFOs. The conditions in a CAFO are bad, even horrendous. In many ways, they look more like factories than farms. Pigs are crowded so closely with other pigs that they must be given antibiotics from a young age to avoid the spread of infection. According to the Union of Concerned Scientists, American pork producers use 10 million pounds of antibiotics per year to keep their confinement raised pigs from getting sick. That’s more than an estimated three times the amount used to treat all human illnesses.

    Pigs raised in these “factory farm” conditions, about 95 percent of all of the pigs raised in this country, often don’t even have room to turn around in their crates, let alone experience the outdoors. It’s stressful and inhumane for them, and it’s surely not healthy for us either.

    We think there’s a better way to do things.

    It’s called old-fashioned animal husbandry, which means farmers rely on care, not chemicals, to tend their animals and their land. Pigs raised in this way are not given antibiotics, and their feed does not contain animal by-products. They are free to roam the pasture, to root in deeply bedded barns, and to socialize with other pigs.
    We believe pigs that are cared for in this way enjoy happier, healthier lives and produce the best pork we’ve ever tasted. We call pork produced according to these standards naturally raised, and sourcing it for our restaurants is part of a larger mission we’ve dubbed Food With Integrity, an ongoing quest to source the highest quality food from farmers who care deeply about the welfare of their animals, their land, and their communities.

    Since 2001, all of the pork served in our restaurants has been from pigs raised in this humane, ecologically sustainable way. In addition to all of our pork and all of our chicken in the US, more than 50 percent of our beef is naturally raised. And we’ll continue until all of our meats in all of our restaurants meet this standard.
    Once again, naturally raised pork at Chipotle means:

    · No antibiotics, ever.
    · Letting pigs exhibit their natural behaviors in open pasture or
    deeply-bedded pens.
    · Vegetarian feed with no animal by-products.

  • Consider my pants rocked, I’m glad I could help.

  • I emailed the company and they told me they cook it on the same grill, next to the meat, but they scrape the grill down before they cook it and make an effort to try to prevent cross-contamination.

  • Power of Quarrygirl!!!

  • When I first heard that Chipotle was offering Gardein at some locations, I emailed them and said that it would be great if it came to Chicago.
    I got an email back pretty fast from an actual person saying it was in test stages now so I will have to wait and he mentioned something about my hometown (how I knew it was a real person).
    I think mass emailing could really work!


  • Waiting for the day it’s at the Beverly Center location. I can walk there.

  • Thanks from all of us that are too lazy to complain 🙂

    Now if only the ones in the Philly area would get gardein, I’d be really stoked.

  • I always dig tofu burritos at Moe’s (and generally find their food better than Chipotle), but I think the tofu gets the same grill as the rest.

  • yes, please bring the vegan garden burrito to LA! (or even tofu option would be nice)

  • eating at Chipolte is supporting the killing of animals.
    And if you think you won’t be eating meat by ordering a vegan burrito you’re kidding yourself.

  • Awesome I love Chipotle!

  • blah blah blah. always hate. nobody is every happy or looking to the future. if one place makes one thing vegan on their menu it makes a difference.

    the vegan gods aren’t going to turn their backs to you at “your” sunday vegan services. you people make me want to eat a real grilled cheese


  • This is great news! I just wish their pinto beans weren’t cooked in lard. I have to get the black beans which I don’t like that much and hence I don’t like to go there much. Hopefully this gardein shit will turn things around.

    Kelly, eating at Chipotle is not supporting the killing of animals. We aren’t going to eat meat and now a meat eater has a great meatless option, potentially saving animals. Also, Chipotle will do just fine without our business.

    My husband travels a lot and Chipotle is a regular lifesaver for a gluten-free vegan on the road. You don’t have to eat there, but don’t be so stupid about people that do go. You all or nothing types hold the cause back so that no-one wants to bother with us.

  • Tikidoll, my better half is also a vegan/gluten free soul and he was told my Chipolte staff that their food is NOT gluten free so not sure why your husband is eating there either. Again, supporting establishments who profit off the killing of animals is hypocritical.

  • I like to support in the killing of animals–I just don’t like to eat them.

  • Vegetables bought at a non-vegan grocery store supports the killing of animals.

    BRB, going to live in the woods to satisfy the vegan gods.

  • Gardein is good stuff; I’d love to see it offered at a Chipotle near me! (Denver)

  • Hi everyone,

    I’m a Chipotle employee, and I just wanted to clarify a few things that this blog posting and a few of these comments discuss.

    Most importantly, with regard to Garden Blend, we are still normally cooking our Garden Blend on our main grill at both of our two test restaurants (Chelsea West and DuPont Circle). That said, we do definitely scrape our grill clean every time in order to minimize any contact it may potentially have with non-vegan ingredients. And it’s true that Garden Blend is prepared on the same grill as our meats, but it is prepared separately, and when meat and Garden Blend are on the grill together (something that is unavoidable at times), we take great care to make sure there is sufficient separation between them to avoid potential cross-contact as much as possible.

    Our general manager at Chelsea West did however communicate to his team that we could cook Garden Blend in a separate pan if a customer made a special request for our Garden Blend to be prepared that way, but this is not currently a practical solution for our test restaurants, which is why it is not our normal method for cooking Garden Blend in this test. Additionally, that solution is not 100% cross-contact free either, given that the tongs, the holding pans, the serving spoons, etc., that we use for cooking and serving the Garden Blend are also used for handling meat items too throughout the day – although they are all cleaned thoroughly between uses.

    And with regard to glutens, Kelly, you are correct that we cannot say we are a “gluten-free” restaurant, because we do indeed serve some foods with glutens in them, and our environment as you know already is not 100% cross-contact free across the board. However, we do serve many gluten-sensitive customers everyday at our restaurants nationwide, since they can usually find things they can eat safely. Most people wanting to avoid gluten can eat almost everything we serve except for our wheat burrito tortillas, our soft wheat taco tortillas, and possibly our hot red tomatillo salsa (there is a small amount of distilled vinegar in it which some gluten-oriented websites still say might be problematic, although most don’t these days).

    Everything else is fine to eat for most people wanting to avoid gluten, including our crispy corn tacos, our corn chips, and our burrito bowls (no tortilla). However, there is also a possibility that our corn may have a small amount of gluten in it from potentially co-mingling with gluten-containing grains in the field.

    If a customer is highly sensitive and would like us to change our gloves, we would be happy to do that at their request – our folks work with wheat tortillas all day long, so there may be the possibility of cross-contact in this regard.

    I hope these answers help. We don’t mean to let anyone down in any way, so I am sorry if what I say causes offense to anyone, but we’d rather make sure our customers or potential customers know the truth. We do also appreciate you guys taking an active interest in our company and in Garden Blend and thank you for allowing me to post these things on your blog.


    Joe Stupp

  • I sat down with the general manager of the NYC Chipotle and talked about the garden blend. And took some pictures.

  • Yeah, fuck chipotle.
    I called in and asked and they said no.
    Idk if the person didn’t know shit or they just didn’t support that shit.
    Fuck you quarry girl.
    You’re a liar.

  • ArtificiallyUnnatural

    The main problem I have with the non-organic, heavily processed meat analogs is that they are full of questionable ingredients that undergo a lot of manufacturing to become the final product. The ingredients themselves are generally saturated with pesticides, the manufacturing process itself denatures the proteins and fats, is full of unhealthy hidden additives while the advertising creates the illusion of a healthy food. The products themselves are packaged in plastic, which in most cases leaches well known carcinogenic endocrine disrupters like bisphenol-A.

    Don’t get me wrong, I can’t say I’m a fan of meat products, they’re even worse in terms of pesticide concentrations, exposure to hormones and high levels of fat and then the cruelty to animals is a huge issue as well. Even ‘humanely’ raised meat still must be slaughtered.

    I feel as though in America we have deviated so far away from a natural healthy diet that it’s no surprise products like Gardein are popular. It seems as though there’s a desire for manufactured food, rather than the real thing, regardless of the long term health consequences.

  • How long does it take them to “test market” a product?

    Back in Jan, this Joe Stupp said they were testing it. In June he emailed me to say they were still testing it.

    Now, today’s response is the same:
    “We have no plans yet, as we’re still testing it and tinkering with the recipe to make sure it has the best possible taste and texture.”

    ENOUGH with the testing. Roll it out nationwide already!

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