The past few months have been one hell of an emotional roller coaster, with Taco Bell revamping its menu, ostensibly to “streamline the restaurant experience.” I say ostensibly because the world remains baffled by the egregious elimination of the 7-Layer Burrito. (All the ingredients to make this item remain at Taco Bell! They’re not hard to assemble! I demand justice.) Now it’s time to brace ourselves once more, because Taco Bell has announced a fresh round of menu cuts: say goodbye to pico de gallo, shredded chicken, and Mexican Pizza. That’s right, Mexican Pizza. There’s not a single damn thing that’s sacred anymore.
In what seems to be a conscious effort not to repeat 7-Layergate, Taco Bell has shared some of its reasoning behind these eliminations. Pico de gallo, which was primarily used on the healthy-ish Fresco menu, will be replaced by the fresh diced tomatoes already used on many of Taco Bell’s non-healthy-ish items. Shredded chicken is presumably getting axed because there’s really no need for two different chicken options on a streamlined menu. As for the Mexican Pizza, which has been a pillar of the menu for years, Taco Bell says it’s being replaced with the return of the #8 combo: 3 Nacho Cheese Doritos Locos Tacos Supreme with a large drink. This is not an even trade.
However, the press release also notes that eliminating the Mexican Pizza’s packaging “helps us work towards our commitment to leave a lighter footprint on our planet,” which I suppose I can accept. It’s important for us to do everything we can to combat climate change, such as eating less meat. And hey, do you know what’s probably the best vegetarian item in the entire fast food market? Taco Bell’s 7-Layer Burrito, which doesn’t exist anymore. I vow to never let Taco Bell off the hook for this folly until I get the answers I feel we all deserve.
While Taco Bell has been 86ing many of its beloved menu items, there are still new ones on the horizon, because no pandemic can halt fast food innovation. Beginning on September 24, the Dragonfruit Freeze will be available nationwide, and Quesalupas (pictured above on the left) will begin their test market phase in Knoxville, Tennessee. On November 5, the same day the Mexican Pizza meets its maker, Taco Bell will introduce the Chicken Chipotle Melt and a new Green Sauce, the latter of which I bet would have tasted amazing on 7-Layer Burritos.