Vegan Options at Taco Bell: What Are They?

Whether it is noon or midnight, you’re looking for a quick lunch spot, on a road trip, or heading back home after a night out with friends, when the craving for Mexican (or should I say Tex-Mex?) food strikes, nothing quite hits the spot like Taco Bell.

The fast-food chain has many appeals, but what truly makes them stand out is the speed (they are real fast), accessibility (there’s almost always a Taco Bell nearby no matter where you are), good food (of course), customizable menu, and vegan options.

Taco Bell vegan options are no secret. However, if you’re new to veganism or haven’t tried eating vegan at the Mexican restaurant, you will need a little guidance on how to order vegan at Taco Bell.

This is exactly what I am going to help you with today. Let’s find out all about eating vegan at Taco Bell.

Vegan Options at Taco Bell

To make ordering vegan at Taco Bell even easier, here is a roundup of the most easily customizable menu items and vegan options at Taco Bell:

Taco Bell Menu Items That Can Be Made Vegan

  • Crunchy/ Soft Taco
  • Bean Burrito
  • Bean & Rice Burrito
  • Black Bean Crunchwrap Supreme
  • Burrito Supreme
  • Black Bean Chalupa
  • Chalupa Supreme
  • Power Menu Bowl – Veggie
  • Cheesy Fiesta Potatoes
  • Nacho Bellgrande

Taco Bell Accidentally Vegan Menu Items

  • Black Beans and Rice
  • Cinnamon Twists

Taco Bell Vegan Breakfast Items

Taco Bell offers a special breakfast menu at selected locations. If you’re lucky to live nearby one of those, you can start your days with the following vegan breakfast items:

  • Cheesy Toasted Breakfast Burrito Potato
  • Hash Brown Toasted Breakfast Burrito
  • Hash Brown

This list of Taco Bell began options is prepared using the information available on Taco Bell’s website as well as other credible online sources. Keep reading to get detailed instructions on how each of these Taco Bell menu items can be customized according to the vegan diet and also to get answers to all your questions about vegan food options at Taco Bell.

Important It’s important to note that Taco Bell defines vegan foods as items that do not contain meat or any other animal-derived ingredients. However, the restaurant clearly states on its website that they do not guarantee the absence of cross-contact with meat products. The website also highlights that they use the same oil to fry meat and non-meat ingredients at some Taco Bell locations. If this is against your vegan commitment, you should confirm at your local Taco Bell before ordering or avoid eating at the Mexican fast-food restaurant.

Taco Bell Vegan Menu – A Detailed Breakdown

▪ Crunchy and Soft Tacos

Vegan tacos at Taco Bell

Let’s start with what the American-Mexican restaurant is known for – Tacos!

According to Taco Bell’s website, you can get any crunchy or soft tacos on the menu made vegan by swapping beef with beans and ordering them “fresco-style”.

Alternatively, you can place a custom order by getting your choice of taco filled with black beans, refried beans, or potato bites. Top the vegan taco filling with some vegetable add-ons and any of the vegan sauces.

▪ Bean Burrito

Vegan burritos at Taco Bell

Bean Burrito is a certified vegetarian item on Taco Bell’s menu. It contains beans, red sauce, onions, and cheese. You can get it made vegan simply by asking them to hold the cheese or ordering it fresco-style.

▪ Burrito Supreme

Taco Bell vegan burrito

Love lettuce in your burrito? Get a vegan Burrito Supreme instead of Bean Burrito!

Ask them to hold the beef and make it fresco-style. You’ll get a tortilla filled with beans, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, red sauce, and salsa. You can also get this vegan Taco Bell burrito grilled for some extra crunch.

▪ Cheesy Bean and Rice Burrito

Taco Bell vegan bean and rice burrito

Cheesy Bean and Rice Burrito appear on Taco Bell’s Value Menu section. It is also certified vegetarian, which means it doesn’t contain meat. However, as the name says, it has cheese (cheese sauce to be specific) in it, which you need to hold on to when ordering it vegan style. The burrito also contains Creamy Jalapeno Sauce, which is also non-vegan.

To order a vegan bean and rice burrito at Taco Bell, ask for the Cheesy Bean and Rice Burrito to be made fresco-style. This will leave you with beans, seasoned rice, and Taco Bell’s special salsa inside a tortilla.

▪ Black Bean Crunchwrap Supreme

Taco Bell vegan bean crunchwrap

Get the Black Bean Crunchwrap Supreme made vegan by ordering it fresco-style. You will get a wholesome filling of black beans, lettuce, tomatoes, and Fiesta Salsa in a toasted tortilla.

Don’t want the salsa to make your crunchwrap soft and soggy? Simply get the bean wrap without sour cream and nacho cheese sauce.

▪ Black Bean Quesarito

Taco Bell vegan quesarito

Created by combining two of Taco Bell’s most beloved menu items – Quesadilla and Burrito – Quesarito is a popular choice for consumers. The Black Bean Quesarito is vegetarian. While technically it can be made vegan, when you omit the non-vegan ingredient, it will be the same as Bean and Rice Burrito.

So, why not order that instead and save some money? The Bean and Rice Burrito is for $1, whereas the Black Bean Quesarito is $3.29. Even if you get two of those burritos, you’ll be saving money.

▪ Black Bean Chalupa

Taco Bell vegan chalupa

Can’t decide between soft and crunchy tacos? Get the Chalupa! Crisp on the outside and soft on the inside, the chalupa offers a perfect combination of crunchy and chewy textures. Taco Bell’s classic chalupa shell is also certified vegan.

Order the Black Bean Chalupa without cheese and sour cream or fresco-style to get a customized vegan chalupa at Taco Bell.

Taco Bell Tested Plant-Based ChalupaAfter the huge success of its Naked Chicken Chalupa, Taco Bell tested a vegan chalupa shell in June 2021. It was, however, only made available at one Taco Bell location in California, and that too for five days only.While Taco Bell didn’t list all the ingredients the chalupa shell was made of, it highlighted that it was a plant-based taco shell made from pea protein. The chalupa shell was plant-based, but the chalupa wasn’t vegan on the whole; it contained avocado ranch sauce and cheddar cheese. However, these dairy items could be omitted to make the chalupa vegan-friendly.I hope the test run was a success, and they bring the plant-based chalupa back as a permanent menu item.

▪ Power Menu Bowl – Veggie

Taco Bell vegan rice bowl

The Veggie Power Menu Bowl from Taco Bell features black beans, lettuce, tomatoes, reduced-fat sour cream, avocado ranch sauce, guacamole, and cheese over a bed of seasoned rice. There are two ways you can get it made vegan – order it fresco-style or ask to hold the sour cream, avocado ranch sauce, and cheese.

Are you Wondering the difference between these two orders?

When you order something fresco-style at Taco Bell, they also remove guacamole from that item. If you go with this option, your Veggie Power Menu Bowl will come with the Fiesta Salsa topping and no sauce. Giving a custom order, on the other hand, will leave you with the guacamole sauce. There won’t be any salsa then. So, choose your ordering method depending on what you like more or in the mood of eating – salsa or guac.

▪ Cheesy Fiesta Potatoes

Taco Bell fried potatoes

Taco Bell’s Cheesy Fiesta Potatoes are simple yet delicious. However, when you get them customized according to the vegan diet, the dish loses its star ingredients, i.e., the sour cream and nacho cheese sauce. While nothing can compensate for the cheesy deliciousness of nacho sauce, you can add some flavor to your potatoes by getting a vegan sauce on the side.

Want to convert the Fiesta Potatoes into a filling snack or quick meal? Get beans and some veggies added to them as well!

▪ Nacho Bellgrande

Taco Bell vegan nachos

Taco Bell’s Nacho Bellgrande originally comes with seasoned beef, refried beans, tomatoes, reduced-fat sour cream, and nacho cheese sauce. Ordering it vegan style may seem like a boring option (what’s the point of having nachos without the cheese sauce?). However, you can still have a good nacho experience by swapping the non-vegan sauces with guacamole.

You can also add black beans, potatoes, lettuce, and/or onions to your nachos. Love a kick of spice in your food? Choose jalapeno peppers from add-ons!   

▪ Black Beans and Rice

Taco Bell vegan beans and rice

Black Beans and Rice are one of the two accidentally vegan items on Taco Bell’s menu (the other one is cinnamon twists). This simple side dish is made with just two ingredients – seasoned rice and black beans. Sounds a little boring? Make it interesting by getting your choice of vegan toppings and sauces added to it.

▪ Cinnamon Twists

Taco Bell vegan desserts

Taco Bell’s Cinnamon Twists may look like fried rotini pasta (and many people have attempted to make it that way), but they are made with a combination of wheat flour, rice flour, and yellow cornmeal. In simple words, the two things are different. The sugary cinnamon snack is the only sweet vegan item on Taco Bell’s menu, and it’s only a dollar, so do give it a try the next time you’re ordering vegan food from Taco Bell.

▪ Cheesy Toasted Breakfast Burrito Potato

Taco Bell vegan breakfast

This breakfast burrito originally comes with potatoes, egg, tomatoes, and nacho cheese sauce. To order it vegan, ask to hold the egg and cheese sauce. You can also ask them to add a vegan sauce of your choice instead of the cheese sauce and beans in place of eggs.

This potato breakfast burrito can also be ordered fresco-style.

▪ Hash Brown Toasted Breakfast Burrito

Taco Bell vegan breakfast burrito

Love hash browns? Taco Bell has them converted into a burrito, so you can easily enjoy them while on the go. The hash brown burrito also has bacon, egg, and cheese, all of which you’ll have to skip on when ordering vegan at Taco Bell.

While they don’t offer beans as an add-on option for this menu item online, you can ask if they can add beans to your burrito when ordering in person.

▪ Hash Brown

Taco Bell vegan hash browns

Not in the mood for a breakfast burrito? Get the classic hash browns from your nearest Taco Bell along with vegan coffee to give a delicious start to your day.

▪ Taco Bell Vegan Sauces

Taco Bell vegan sauces

Make your meals more flavorful with these vegan Taco Bell sauces:

  • Breakfast Salsa
  • Red Sauce
  • Hot Sauce
  • Fire Sauce
  • Mild Sauce
  • Diablo Sauce
  • Green Sauce
  • Guacamole

▪ Vegan Drinks at Taco Bell

Taco Bell vegan drinks

Pair your plant-based food with any of the following drinks to enjoy a full vegan meal at Taco Bell:

  • Pepsi
  • Diet Pepsi
  • Pepsi Zero Sugar
  • Mountain Dew
  • Mountain Dew Baja Blast
  • Mountain Dew Baja Blast Zero Sugar
  • Mountain Dew Baja Blast Freeze
  • Mountain Dew Kickstart Orange Citrus
  • Dr. Pepper
  • Sierra Mist
  • G2 Gatorade Fruit Punch
  • Brisk Mango Fiesta
  • Tropicana Pink Lemonade
  • Wild Strawberry Freeze
  • Wild Strawberry Lemonade Freeze
  • Blue Raspberry Freeze
  • Blue Raspberry Lemonade Freeze
  • Orange Juice
  • Premium Hot Coffee
  • Regular Iced Coffee
  • Iced Tea Special
  • Sweet Tea Special
  • Lipton Unsweetened Iced Tea

How to Order Vegan at Taco Bell? Some Useful Tips and Hacks

Use the Self-Order Kiosk

At a time when most fast-food restaurants are still considering expanding their menu to include plant-based items, Taco Bell has taken a huge lead with the addition of the Veggie Mode to its self-order kiosks. The unique feature allows you to see a plant-based version of Taco Bell’s standard menu, making it easier for vegetarians and vegans to place an order.

However, knowing that not everyone has access to these kiosks and many people prefer drive-thru or online ordering, the restaurant also allows consumers to customize the menu items according to their needs and preferences.

Remember the Magic Words

There is a magic word for ordering vegan at Taco Bell. Save yourself from giving detailed instructions on what to remove from your vegetarian order to make it vegan by ordering it “Fresco-Style”.

Choose any item from Taco Bell’s menu and make it vegan by asking them to hold the meat and make it Fresco-Style.

When you order Fresco-Style at Taco Bell, all the cheese, cream, and mayo-based sauces in a food item are replaced with Fiesta Salsa (prepared fresh in-house every day).

This is the simplest way to order vegan food at Taco Bell. However, there are several other vegan add-ons available that you can add to your vegan foods to make them more interesting and flavorful.

AVA Certified Vegan Ingredients at Taco Bell

Taco Bell has a range of American Vegetarian Association (AVA) certified vegan ingredients on its menu. I am listing them all here, so you know what options you have to customize your vegan meals at Taco Bell:

  • Gordita Flatbread
  • Soft Taco
  • Crunchy Taco
  • Chalupa Shell
  • Tortillas
  • Nacho Chips
  • Red strips (red tortilla chips)
  • Seasoned Rice
  • Black Beans
  • Seasoned Refried Beans
  • Potato Bites
  • Lettuce
  • Tomatoes
  • Onions
  • Jalapeno Peppers
  • Guacamole
  • Breakfast Salsa
  • Red Sauce
  • Hot Sauce
  • Fire Sauce
  • Mild Sauce
  • Diablo Sauce
  • Green Sauce

Frequently Asked Questions

▪ Does Taco Bell sell vegan tacos?

Taco Bell doesn’t offer vegan tacos as part of its standard menu. However, the restaurant does allow you to get any of the hard or soft tacos customized according to your vegan dietary guidelines. The easiest to customize are the vegetarian tacos. Read the article to learn how you can get Taco Bell’s vegetarian tacos made vegan.

▪ Are Taco Bell bean burritos vegan?

Taco Bell offers two bean burritos options – Bean Burrito and Bean and Rice Burrito. Both of them contain cheese, which means they are not vegan. But, they can be ordered vegan. Simply ask them to hold the cheese while ordering or order them fresco-style.

▪ Are Taco Bell chips vegan?

The nacho chips available at Taco Bell are vegan on their own. However, they come with nacho cheese sauce, which is not vegan. You can order the chips without the cheese sauce and get salsa and guac instead.

▪ Is Taco Bell rice vegan?

Taco Bell’s seasoned rice is 100% vegan-friendly.

▪ Are Taco Bell beans vegan?

Yes. Both the types of beans they offer at Taco Bell – Black Beans and Seasoned Refried Beans – are vegan-friendly.

▪ Are the potatoes at Taco Bell vegan?

Taco Bell potatoes are vegan on their own. However, as discussed earlier, they may be cooked in shared fryers. If this doesn’t bother you or go against your vegan principles, you can add crispy fried potatoes to your vegan meals. But, if you strictly avoid foods that have possibly been cross-contaminated with non-vegan ingredients, you may prefer to steer clear of Taco Bell’s potatoes.

▪ Does Taco Bell have vegan breakfast?

The only item on Taco Bell’s breakfast menu that is vegan-friendly is Hash Brown.

The other two Taco Bell breakfast items that can be customized according to the vegan principles are Cheesy Toasted Breakfast Burrito Potato and Hash Brown Toasted Breakfast Burrito.

It’s important to note that the hash browns and potatoes used in these Taco Bell vegan breakfast items may be cooked in shared fryers.

▪ Can Taco Bell chalupa be vegan?

Taco Bells’ Black Bean Chalupa can be made vegan. Read the article to learn how to order a vegan Taco Bell chalupa.

▪ Is Taco Bell guacamole vegan?

Taco Bell’s guacamole doesn’t contain dairy or any other animal-derived ingredients. Hence, it is vegan-friendly.

▪ Does Taco Bell have vegetarian options?

Taco Bell offers a variety of American Vegetarian Association (AVA) certified vegetarian food options for plant-eaters. The items are marked with a green-colored “V” on the menu. However, I am listing them down here as well for your convenience:

  • Hash Brown
  • Cheesy Toasted Breakfast Burrito Potato
  • Chips and Nacho Cheese Sauce
  • Spicy Potato Soft Taco
  • Bean Burrito
  • Cheesy Bean and Rice Burrito
  • Black Bean Quesarito
  • Black Bean Chalupa
  • Cheese Quesadilla
  • Cheesy Fiesta Potatoes
  • Black Bean Crunchwrap Supreme
  • Power Menu Bowl – Veggie
  • Cheesy Roll-Up
  • Black Beans and Rice
  • Cinnamon Twists
  • Cinnabon Delights
  • Black Beans
  • Reduced-Fat Sour Cream
  • Creamy Jalapeno Sauce
  • Nacho Cheese Sauce
  • Red Sauce
  • Avocado Ranch Sauce
  • Chipotle Sauce
  • Spicy Ranch
  • Guacamole
  • Breakfast Salsa
  • Mild Sauce Packet
  • Hot Sauce Packet
  • Fire Sauce Packet
  • Diablo Sauce Packet

Conclusion – Is Taco Bell Vegan-Friendly?

Taco Bell may not have vegan food options listed on its menu, but it is without a doubt a vegan-friendly restaurant. In fact, Taco Bell can easily be termed as one of the most vegan-friendly fast-food restaurants in the US. The reason being their highly customizable menu.

Unlike most other fast-food chains, Taco Bell acknowledges that many of its consumers have different dietary restrictions. Moreover, they also accommodate those specific needs by allowing consumers to get almost every item on the menu customized just how they want.

The only downside of Taco Bell is that it uses the same frying oil for both animal and plant-based food items at some of its locations. This can be a bummer for many vegans. If this is something that concerns you, I recommend confirming at your local Taco Bell before ordering.

Did you find this vegan analysis of Taco Bell’s menu helpful? Do you want to know what other fast-food restaurants offer for vegans? Read the article Carl’s Jr. Vegan Options to find out if it is the place to get your (vegan) burger craving satisfied!

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Author Bio
Im Emma and I’m the creator of Vegan Calm. When I became a vegan seven years ago, I mainly did it for health and ethical reasons. To my surprise, it had another amazing benefit; I became a much calmer and peaceful person. This change inspired me to create Vegan Calm. Whether you’ve been a vegan for a long time or just want to learn more, this website will have something for you.

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