Restaurants

Chipotle is testing a replacement for its queso

Key Points
  • Chipotle Mexican Grill's new queso is being tested in Dallas, Detroit and San Diego.
  • The company released its first queso in September 2017 but had to tweak the recipe after negative customer feedback.
  • CEO Brian Niccol teased several menu additions last month on the company's earnings call, including carne asada.
Chipotle Queso Blanco
Source: Chipotle Mexican Grill

Chipotle Mexican Grill said Thursday it is testing a new queso in three markets.

Fifty-two restaurants across Dallas, Detroit and San Diego have been offering a Queso Blanco since July 29. It's made with Monterey Jack and white cheddar cheeses and serrano, poblano and chipotle peppers. All test markets saw an increase in Queso Blanco sales after the first week, the company said.

"We listened to our guests and worked tirelessly in our kitchens to make an even better tasting queso," Nevielle Panthaky, head of Chipotle's culinary division, said in a statement.

Chipotle released its first queso in September 2017. After failing to resonate with customers, the chain tweaked the recipe. Spokeswoman Laurie Schalow said the Queso Blanco will replace Chipotle's original queso on menus if it successfully passes through the restaurant's testing process.

On the company's earnings call last month, CEO Brian Niccol teased several menu additions. He said carne asada — an additional steak protein option — is in its final stages of testing. Chipotle is also developing quesadillas using ovens, which could mean desserts or nachos down the line.

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