Taco Bell offers a lot of vegetarian and vegan options. But before you order anything with their refried beans, you should know if that item qualifies.
Then, you’ll be able to stick to your diet. Whether you chose your diet for health or ethical reasons, it’s important to know what you’re eating.
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Do Taco Bell Refried Beans Contain Lard?
Taco Bell’s refried beans don’t contain lard. In fact, the item is certified vegan by the American Vegetarian Association (AVA). That means anyone can eat the beans without worrying about consuming animal products.
Whether you’re a vegetarian or not, you might wonder if something contains lard. Fortunately, Taco Bell has refried beans and plenty of other vegetarian options.
What Does AVA-Certified Mean?
American Vegetarian Association (AVA) certification can include dairy and eggs. However, Taco Bell says that items that don’t contain dairy, eggs, or animal by-products are vegan.
Combine that with the AVA certification, and you’ll find that the Taco Bell refried beans are one of a few vegan items.
Are Taco Bell Refried Beans Always Vegan?
Unfortunately, there’s no guarantee that Taco Bell’s refried beans will always be vegan or even vegetarian. If employees use the same spoon to prepare the beans as to prepare meat, then cross-contamination can occur.
The same can happen if the restaurant uses the same spoon for the beans to measure out cheese or other dairy products.
Customers don’t have any control over what utensils the employees use. Sure, you might luck out and go to a location where the employees use separate spoons.
You have to decide if you’re okay with a bit of contamination. Some people might not have a problem with that, but others won’t want to risk it.
Why Not Eat Taco Bell Refried Beans
Because of the potential for cross-contact, you might want to avoid the refried beans at Taco Bell. Also, the refried beans come to the restaurant as a dry powder. The employees mix the beans with water to rehydrate the food.
If you want fresher refried beans, you may want to go to another restaurant. That way, you can make sure the beans don’t go through the same process.
Other Vegan Items at Taco Bell
Even though the refried beans are vegan, it helps to know about other options. That way, you can find plenty of food to eat if your friends or relatives want to go to Taco Bell.
Some vegan menu items to consider include:
- Cinnamon twists
- Black beans
- Hash brown
You can make other items vegan by asking to remove the meat and cheese. This is a good way to get a vegan taco or the bean burrito.
In some cases, you’ll have to customize the item, but other items are automatically free of meat and dairy. Of course, the drinks are all vegan, so you can fill up with a Baja Blast or another soda of your choice.
How to Make Sure Your Order Is Vegan
When going to Taco Bell, you can’t always be sure your order won’t contain bits of meat or dairy. The beans may not have lard, but there can be bits of cheese or ground beef.
Consider the following things to decrease the chances of cross-contamination.
Go Early in the Day
The best option is to head to Taco Bell for an early lunch. There will be a better chance that the employees haven’t used the same spoon for the refried beans as for other items.
Even if they have used the same spoon, you can ask if they have a clean one ready. You might need to wait for them to wash the spoon. However, that’s a good way to get a vegan-friendly meal.
Ask the Employees
You can ask the employees to use a clean spoon throughout the day. Of course, later on, more spoons may be dirty and require washing.
However, if you’re nice and patient with the staff, they may be willing to help you out. So don’t yell or be rude to the people working. If you do that, they might not be as willing to fulfill your special request.
Is There Lard in the Refried Beans at Taco Bell?
Fortunately, there isn’t any lard in the Taco Bell refried beans. However, that doesn’t mean they’re always going to be vegetarian or vegan. Keep that in mind when placing your order so that you can ask workers to use a clean spoon to prepare your order.