Taco Bell is testing additional vegetarian options.
The new vegetarian alternative shell is “made from a pea protein-based proprietary blend that’s breaded, shaped into the unique Chalupa form and then crisped to order,” the announcement said.
Inside the shell, the plant-based Naked Chicken Chalupa is filled with lettuce, cheddar cheese, diced tomatoes and avocado ranch sauce, just like a traditional Naked Chicken Chalupa.
“We’ve long been a food disruptor, and this time is no different,” Liz Matthews, Taco Bell’s global chief food innovation officer, said in a statement. “We’ve seen our industry follow patterns of sameness, but we understand that consumers are looking for creativity and craveability in this space.”
Taco Bell has launched a limited-time plant-based shell alternative for its Naked Chicken Chalupa at one location in Irvine, California. (Courtesy of Taco Bell)
Taco Bell also hinted at another new menu item, though it didn’t give many details. According to the announcement, Taco Bell will be working with Beyond Meat on the new dish, which is expected to “appeal to an even broader audience of consumers.”
Details on the new item are expected to be released at a later date.
Taco Bell announced the return of its Naked Chicken Chalupa — a chalupa made with a fried chicken shell — in May as a way to disrupt the “chicken wars” happening across the fast food industry.
The Naked Chicken Chalupa was first introduced by Taco Bell in 2017.