Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Chipotle vs. Qdoba: The Showdown

Last night I had Chipotle for dinner again:

And today for lunch, we went to Qdoba:

So let's compare the two. As everyone but the owners of these two restaurants will admit, they are very similar. But which one is more awesome, i.e. vegan-friendly?

On the Chipotle side:
1) They gave me more lettuce. I still had to ask for extra, but just check out that picture -- there's a lot of lettuce. At Qdoba, I asked for extra lettuce and I still only got about a half a cup. Very super lame.
2) Their guacamole is tastier. That's what my stepmom said, and I agree.
3) Their ingredients taste a little fresher all-around.
4) This is a big one -- Chipotle is introducing Gardein vegan meats at many of their locations in big cities, including LA, and my local Chipotle on Ventura Blvd. I have yet to try said Gardein, but it sounds pretty cool. Check out quarrygirl.com for more infos.

On the Qdoba side:
1) Their pinto beans are vegan. This is a big strike against Chipotle, which has bacon in their pinto beans. WTF!
2) Their grilled veggies are awesome. They have a squash medley that is super yum and not oily. They also have traditional fajita veggies - onions and green peppers. Chipotle only has the fajita veggies.
3) They have soup! As you can see in the above photo, I got a nice spicy cup of their (vegan) tortilla soup. It's tasty, full of veggies, spicy, and low-calorie.
4) They have mango salsa. I haven't tried any, but in general mango salsa is super tasty.

So there you have the main points. If I want lettuce, guacamole, or Gardein, I need to head to Chipotle. If I want pinto beans, grilled veggies, or soup, Qdoba is my choice. I'm not going to declare an overall winner, because I honestly like both restaurants. It's nice to have a fast-food type restaurant with healthy vegan options. It's almost unheard of. So yay! Go forth and flourish, Chipotle and Qdoba. Learn from each other and continue to expand your vegan food and make me happy.

Which is your favorite?


  1. I totally agree -- I like Chipotle for the freshness and flavor; I like Qdoba for the grilled veggies. Both have great customer service with well-trained smiling employees, too.

  2. Except for when you want more lettuce! Ehh... =)