Chipotle has a bit of a health halo thanks to their preservative-free philosophy and healthier picks like brown rice, but even the most well-intentioned eater in the Chipotle line can rack up a hefty calorie score if they're not methodical about creating a healthy order. Some meals at Chipotle can rake in over 1,000 calories, thus putting it in the same caloric league as a trip to McDonald's. Don't be fooled next time you're ordering a bowl, and follow these healthy guidelines for a clean, wholesome meal.
There is maybe no greater feeling than inching forward in the line at Chipotle, patiently waiting to spew out your order—this please, extra that, a little more of that, too.
With this privilege, comes great responsibility. Before you know it, the burrito bowl that you thought was a healthier choice in comparison to fast food could actually be packing over 1,000 calories. Check out Chipotle's nutrition calculator to see how many calories are packed in your go-to order (warning: the results might surprise you). Here are some useful tips to help keep the calories down without having to sacrifice your favorite Chipotle components.
- Say "ta-ta" to the tortilla: The burrito tortilla alone has 300 calories. If you want to keep it and make your order lower in calories, well, that’s going to be one wimpy burrito. Instead, ask for a tortilla on the side and split it with your Chipotle partner, or get your meal in corn tacos (soft or hard, 210 calories).
- Opt for brown: Always go for brown rice—it has less sodium and more fiber—and at 210 calories, it’s a hearty base for you bowl. Plus, it counts toward your daily whole grain tally.
- Mind the meat: All the meat and tofu options nutritionally fall between sofritas (145 calories) and carnitas (210 calories), so we think that you should get what you like. If you’re indecisive, get half and half of your favorite two for no extra cost.
- Save by splitting: If you want to get really thrifty, split your salad in half. Add your own salad greens to bulk it up and get TWO meals out of one trip to Chipotle.