Updated August 14, 2019. Taco Bell just added vegan meat to its menu, but there’s a catch — you need to live in Spain.
The Mexican-inspired fast food chain just announced the arrival of its new meat-free meat, which is made from oats and beans and is marinated in a sauce with “secret Taco Bell spices.” The oat meat can be used in the place of animal-based meat in any of Taco Bell’s options including burritos, tacos, and quesadillas.
The plant-based meat is certified by the American Vegetarian Association and marks the first time that Taco Bell Spain has clearly marked vegetarian options on its menu, Restauración News reports.
“Taco Bell has always been a safe alternative for vegetarians because we can offer all of our products as a veggie version, but many people don’t know about it,” Maria José, general director of Taco Bell Spain, said in a statement. “This new initiative to customize the menu represents Taco Bell’s commitment to its consumers.”
In the UK, Taco Bell served vegan oat meat during National Vegetarian Week in May. The meatless option is made by Helsinki-based brand Gold&Green Foods. The company confirmed with LIVEKINDLY that its vegan meat is currently being served at Spanish Taco Bell locations. According to Gold&Green Foods, customers are surprised by how realistic the meat tastes. However, Taco Bell Spain marinates the oat meat in a vegetarian sauce.
Vegan at Taco Bell
Taco Bell has long been known for its vegan-friendly options. Anything can be made vegan by asking for “fresco-style,” which replaces dairy with pico de gallo and swaps meat for beans or potatoes.
Earlier this year, Taco Bell began trialing a dedicated vegetarian menu in Dallas, Texas. The move was a response to the increased demand for healthier food, the chain said in a press release.
Other Mexican-inspired fast food chains such as Del Taco and QDOBA are serving beefy crumbles from Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods. Julie Felss Masino, Taco Bell’s North American president, told CNBC that although Taco Bell met with both companies, it’ll stick to the classics. “[W]hat we’re proud of is that we’ve been doing vegetarian for 57 years,” she said.
Taco Bell’s vegan meat is now available at its 53 locations in Spain.