What Kind of Cheese Does Chipotle Use?

Chipotle offers a wide variety of toppings, including shredded cheese and the recent addition of queso Blanco dip. Many customers are wondering how the fast-casual chain has such tasty cheese and dips.

So, what kinds of cheese do Chipotle use, and how healthy are they? Here’s what you need to know and more.

What Kind of Shredded Cheese Does Chipotle Use?

Chipotle uses Monterey Jack for their shredded cheese. This type of cheese is made from pasteurized cow’s milk and has a mild flavor with a semi-hard consistency. Chipotle also uses a mixture of white cheddar, cultured cream, and other ingredients for their melted dip, known as Queso Blanco.

chipotle shredded cheese monterey jack

Types of Cheese at Chipotle

Chipotle has three different types of cheese products listed on their website, including Monterey Jack, White Cheddar, and Cheese Cultures. Let’s take a deeper look at each type of cheese.

Monterey Jack

When you ask for cheese at Chipotle, you’ll most likely receive a topping of shredded Monterey Jack. Monterey Jack is a semi-hard American cheese that’s created from cow’s milk. The flavor is typically mild and a little bit sweet, making it a popular choice.

It hasn’t been stated what brand of Monterey Jack cheese the fast-casual chain uses.

White Cheddar

Chipotle also uses white cheddar in their Queso Blanco. White cheddar is a type of cheese that doesn’t contain any artificial or natural colors. This type of cheese can taste somewhat tangy, earthy, and even sweet.

However, Chipotle states that they use aged cheddar in their queso Blanco, as the flavor intensifies and sharpens over time. It has not been stated what brand of white cheddar the fast-casual chain uses.

Cheese Cultures

Chipotle also lists cheese cultures on their list of ingredients. Cheese cultures are a type of good bacteria that are used to make cheese. Cultures are added to milk, which turns to lactic acid and helps form the mixture into a solid block of cheese.

Different varieties of cheese have various positive bacterial profiles that can impact the flavor, smell, and nutrition benefits. Not all cheese products are made using cultures, but it can speed up the process.

Does Chipotle Use Pre-Shredded Cheese?

As of 2015, Chipotle now uses pre-shredded cheese instead of grating it themselves. Chipotle used to grate Monterey Jack and other cheeses by hand but ended this practice due to bacterial outbreaks.

Chipotle Cheese Nutrition Facts

Chipotle has two main types of cheese products listed on their website: Monterey Jack and White Cheddar. The shredded Monterey Jack is typically used as a topping, while the white cheddar is used in the queso Blanco dip. Let’s take a deeper look into these ingredients and their nutritional value.

Monterey Jack

One portion of Chipotle’s shredded Monterey Jack cheese comes out to 1 ounce. Here’s a list of the nutritional facts for each serving of this cheese:

  • 110 Calories
  • 8g of Fat
  • 6g of Protein
  • 1g of Carbs
  • 5g of Saturated Fat
  • 30mg of Cholesterol
  • 190mg of Sodium

Queso Blanco

Chipotle uses white cheddar in their Queso Blanco dip. The fast-casual chain offers this tip in three serving sizes, including entree, side, and large. Here’s a list of the nutritional facts for the entree size of Queso Blanco cheese at Chipotle:

  • 120 Calories
  • 9g of Fat
  • 5g of Protein
  • 4g of Carbs
  • 6g of Saturated Fat
  • 30mg of Cholesterol
  • 250mg of Sodium
  • 1g of Sugar

How Is the Queso Blanco Made at Chipotle?

Chipotle started offering their Queso Blanco dip at all of their locations on February 27th, 2020. Chipotle states that they use milk from family-owned farms with healthy cows that are treated humanely. Here’s a full list of the 13 ingredients in Chipotle’s Queso Blanco dip:

  • Monterey Jack cheese
  • White Cheddar
  • Farm fresh dairy
  • Chipotle spices
  • Poblano peppers
  • Serrano peppers
  • Garlic cloves
  • Bright red tomatoes
  • Yellow onion
  • Corn starch
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Cultured cream

chipotle quesadillas and cheese dip

Is the Queso Blanco Healthy?

Generally speaking, Chipotle’s Queso Blanco isn’t the healthiest choice on their menu. This cheese dip is offered in three different portion sizes, ranging from 2 ounces, 4 ounces, and 8 ounces. The 2-ounce entree size is their lightest and healthiest option of Queso Blanco.

However, the larger portion sizes become less and less healthy. For example, a side of Queso Blanco or 4 ounces is twice the amount of the standard portion size. A large serving of Queso Blanco is the least healthy, with 480 calories, 37g of fat, 120mg of cholesterol, and 980mg of sodium.

Salt is one of the main components that make the Queso Blanco dip less healthy. The 980 milligrams of salt found in the largest size is nearly half of the daily recommended intake of sodium. For those reasons, it might be best to stick to smaller portions of Chipotle’s Queso Blanco dip.

What About Chips and Queso Dip?

You might be in for a surprise if you get a side of chips and queso dip at Chipotle. Depending on the size, you might be adding anywhere from 750 to over 1,200 calories to your meal. Here are the nutrition facts for chips and queso dip at Chipotle:

Standard serving:

  • 780 Calories
  • 43g of Fat
  • 17g of Protein
  • 80g of Carbohydrates

Large serving:

  • 1290 Calories
  • 75g of Fat
  • 31g of Protein
  • 124g of Carbohydrates

What Kind of Cheese is Used in Chipotle Quesadillas?

Chipotle uses their blend of pre-shredded Monterey Jack cheese in their quesadillas. The fast-casual restaurant melts the cheese inside of a flour tortilla using a commercial grill.

Chipotle Quesadilla Nutrition Facts

The nutrition facts for a Chipotle quesadilla without any extra ingredients, meat, or sides might surprise you. Here are the nutrition facts:

  • 650 Calories
  • 33g of Fat
  • 26g of Protein
  • 53g of Carbs

What Type of Cheese Does Chipotle Use?

Chipotle lists three types of cheese products on the website, including Monterey Jack, White Cheddar, and Cheese Cultures. Chipotle uses pre-shredded Monterey Jack as their primary cheese, while the White Cheddar is mixed into their Queso Blanco dip. The Queso Blanco dip uses a combination of both kinds of cheese. Check out the official ingredient page for a full list of menu items at Chipotle.

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