Taco Bell is testing a new menu item in select areas just a few days after it removed about a dozen items from its menu. The new Cantina Crispy Melt Taco is the company’s attempt to try to revitalize its food options in a COVID-19 world.
The Cantina Crispy Melt Taco appears to be an upgrade of the traditional crunchy taco. Taco Bell describes it to Thrillist as a fried white-corn shell filled with nacho cheese sauce, their three-cheese blend plus cheddar, seasoned beef, sour cream, lettuce and tomatoes. Right now, Taco Bell is testing it in Detroit, Thrillist reported.
If you are a vegetarian, Taco Bell suggests ordering a vegetarian version of the Cantina Crispy Melt Taco simply by asking for beans instead of ground beef.
“Taco Bell is known for its craveable, indulgent food innovation,” a spokesperson said in an email to Thrillist. “As the brand continues its menu evolution, the Cantina Crispy Melt Taco is giving the Detroit market an elevated experience of the iconic Crunchy Taco.”
The inclusion of a vegetarian option for the possible new menu item may have been an olive branch offering to customers who were upset with the recent removal of potato-based options on the Taco Bell menu, and in particular, the seven-layer burrito.
In a press release in July, when Taco Bell announced they’d be removing items from the menu, the company stressed the need to streamline its food preparation to meet the changing needs in a world still facing a pandemic.
Fans of items getting the axe were unmoved. On Twitter, @3xthecharm_ registered her displeasure with an all-caps announcement that the seven-layer burrito had officially left the menu:
THE SEVEN LAYER BURRITO IS OFF THE MENU. I REPEAT: THE SEVEN LAYER BURRITO IS OFF THE MENU.
I THOUGHT THIS WASN’T HAPPENING FOR A COUPLE MORE DAYS BUT CLEARLY I WAS SADLY MISTAKEN. I WILL ONLY BE ACCEPTING MONETARY CONDOLENCES AT THIS TIME.
— m 🦋 (@3xthecharm_) August 12, 2020
Executives at Taco Bell said removing items and making the food preparation process easier for their line workers should improve customer experience with food quality and service. Also, Taco Bell decided to look at adding new foods through customer taste tests at local restaurants.
“While change is hard, a simplified menu and innovation process will leave room for new fan favorites, continued progress in categories such as plant-based diets, and even opportunities for the return of some classics on a limited-time basis,” the press release said.
There is no word from Taco Bell when the Cantina Crispy Melt Taco may go nationwide. But, we suggest keeping an eye out on our local drive-thru to see if your restaurant may be next to test this new dish out.