Opinion: Chipotle’s calorie counts are outrageous

Jacob Ruffo is a junior journalism major and columnist for The Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected]

Jacob Ruffo

Chipotle is known for being bold: from their advertisements, to putting those phrases on their bags and to upping the price of guacamole to $1.95, they are always sticking their neck out to be bold. One unseen way they are being extra bold is with their calorie counts.

The calorie counter for burritos is, according to their menu, 450-1050 calories. That seems reasonable, until you look further down the menu and see that the shell alone is 300 calories. Want a 450-calorie burrito? I hope you like beans and salsa and nothing else. Even just the shell and rice is over 450 calories. How on earth are they allowed to post that as a fair calorie count?

The rice, chicken, steak, carnitas, and guacamole each put the count over 450. The sofritas, the non-meat alternative, puts the count at about 450 calories. So if you want to spend $6.50 on a shell wrapped around only beans – or only tofu – you can get a burrito for 450 calories.

As for normal human beings, the numbers are still a little iffy. Let’s say that person A goes and gets a chicken burrito with brown rice, black beans, fajitas, corn salsa, sour cream and cheese. Reasonable right? Too bad that’s over the calorie count.

According to Chipotle’s calorie counter on their website, that is 1275 calories. That is more calories than the higher end of the calorie counter given on the menu. How exactly does Chipotle think its customers order?

Part of Chipotle’s whole image is that they are holistic and organic, and therefore are much healthier than your average fast food. Well, a Big Mac is only 530 calories, according to the McDonald’s website. A Big Mac compares, at least calorie-wise, to a lacking Chipotle burrito.

Needless to say, my go-to burrito of barbacoa, both rices, both beans, fajitas, every salsa, double sour cream, cheese and lettuce is way over the count. For those wondering, it’s about 1500 calories. It’s also delicious.

Realistically, while I don’t like that the calorie counts basically lies, it doesn’t affect me. Chipotle is also delicious and super filling, so I will still be going as often as I can.

Jacob Ruffo is an opinion columnist for The Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected]