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Chipotle Is Finally Bringing Back Everyone's Favorite Steak

The popular protein is making an appearance on menus for the third time.
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Chipotle is widely celebrated for its customizable menu options, and now customers will have access to yet another protein. Starting today, the fast-casual Mexican chain will be serving the fan-favorite Carne Asada for a limited time.

Available at restaurants in the U.S. and Canada, the returning steak item is marinated, then seasoned on the grill with a combination of spices like cumin, coriander, and oregano. It's then finished off with fresh squeezed lime and hand-chopped cilantro. The menu item is Whole30-approved, as well as keto- and paleo-friendly.

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Carne Asada made its inital debut at Chipotle in September 2019, proving to be a success. In a news release, the chain estimated that more than 10 million people ordered the item after its first launch, adding that it believes almost half of those customers were first-time guests. The protein returned to restaurants for a second time in 2020, becoming one of Chipotle's "most requested menu items on social media," according to the company.

chipotle carne asada bowl
Courtesy of Chipotle

For those interested in straying from their usual bowl or burrito order, Chipotle is offering the Carne Asada in its customizable quesadilla and Fajita Quesadilla. Both of these items are made with Monterey Jack cheese and come with three sides, such as black beans, cilantro lime rice, and sour cream.

"Over the past few years, our fans' passion for Carne Asada has rivaled any other Chipotle menu item," Chris Brandt, Chipotle's chief brand officer, said in a news release. "Now, we've answered the call, brought back this iconic protein, and introduced an entirely new way to try Carne Asada with the Carne Asada Quesadilla."

To make this menu item a Fajita Quesadilla, customers just need to order their quesadilla with fajita veggies. Chipotle first rolled out the Fajita Quesadilla in March after the ingredient combination went viral on TikTok.

The chain reported that the Fajita Quesadilla "nearly doubled Chipotle's quesadilla business at launch and resulted in two of the brand's top digital sales days of all time."

Customers can only order quesadillas and Fajita Quesadillas on the Chipotle app, website, or third-party delivery platforms.

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In honor of the beloved steak's comeback, Chipotle is offering free delivery on all Carne Asada orders placed on its app and website from Sept. 14 to Oct. 1, 2023.

Carne Asada isn't the only protein option Chipotle has added to its menu this year. In March, the chain introduced its Chicken Al Pastor in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. This limited-time menu item featured adobo, morita peppers, ground achiote, pineapple, and lime.

Brianna Ruback
Brianna is a staff writer at Eat This, Not That! She attended Ithaca College, where she graduated with a degree in Journalism and a minor in Communication Studies. Read more about Brianna