Chipotle is experimenting with adding a new meat filling to its menu. According to the Kansas City Star, the burrito chain is testing chorizo at 33 Kansas City locations starting today. Chipotle's chorizo is made from a blend of ground chicken and pork, along with paprika, cumin, garlic, and red wine. The chorizo patties are seared in stores and are crumbled just before serving. The chain's head chef Nate Appleman says he's been wanting to add chorizo to the menu since he started working at the company in 2010: "I've been beating the drum for five years... It was one of the first things I worked on."
So how is Chipotle adding another pork-based item to its menu when it has been struggling to keep its stores supplied with carnitas? Chipotle says that while carnitas come from pork shoulder, chorizo utilizes "ground meat from various parts of the hog," which means it's easier to find supplies for. Plus it wastes less of the meat the company has already purchased.
Chipotle isn't the only chain batting around the idea of adding chorizo to the menu. Last year, McDonald's revealed that it was testing chorizo burritos in select locations around the country. However, unlike Chipotle's chorizo which features pork meat, McDonald's version is made from dark meat chicken flavored with "chorizo seasoning."