If you missed my first Chipotle article, then click here to go back and read it before you start on this one! Enjoy..
When I first started this site almost two years ago it was with the intention to discuss topics like saving for retirement and investment strategies. But I quickly realized that those articles were pretty boring to read and to write. That’s why you see articles today ranging from travel hacking to saving money at Chipotle. The latter has actually become one of the most popular articles on my site and today it has over 5,000 total views.
I thought it might be a good idea to do a follow up article and touch up on some new tips and tricks I’ve learned for saving money at Chipotle. It’s still one of my favorite restaurants of all time and I know a lot of my friends and readers love it too so here you guys go:
Chipotle’s Secret Menu
I always knew that Chipotle was very flexible when it came to ordering: you can ask for more of this or more of that but I never knew they had a secret menu. One of my favorite things to order now a days is called a Quesarito. It takes a little longer to make so I only ask for it if there’s not much of a line. People behind you tend to ask for one too if they see it being ordered and the workers don’t like this.
But as the name would imply, it’s basically a quesadilla and burrito all rolled into one. They’ll add the cheese first and melt it in the tortilla press, then you can go ahead and add your fillings like you would with a normal burrito. You won’t save money by going with this option but it does taste pretty awesome.
Alternatively, you could also have them make a burrito for you and then ask them to press it in the tortilla press for a few secons to get the outside nice and crispy.
I had a friend in college who absolutely lived by this trick. Not only did he love Chipotle more than me, he was also cheaper than me too. And since you can order tacos individually he would usually order 2 tacos and completely load them up. My friend would ask for rice, both kinds of beans, fajitas, meat, all the salsas, etc and he would end up with about the same amount of food as a burrito but spread out across two tiny taco tortillas. That way he would only have to pay 2/3 the cost of a trio of tacos.
$3 Halloween Burrito
Chipotle used to offer free burritos on Halloween if you were dressed up like a burrito but this year they’re charging $3 for a bowl, burrito or tacos. Still not a bad deal since you can load up on double meat and guacamole though. The lines tend to get pretty crazy so the earlier you go the better; the deal starts at 4 pm and goes until closing time.
It doesn’t happen every year but Chipotle usually offers a Christmas and graduation deal where if you buy $30 worth of gift cards, you get a free burrito on your next visit. The most recent deal was last year around Christmas time when they offered a free burrito on your next visit if you bought $30 worth of gift cards. The great thing about the free burrito is that there are no restrictions, so feel free to get double meat and guacamole.
Truly Free Soda
If you live nearby a college campus, the local Chipotle may offer free sodas to students. Most college ID cards don’t have dates on them so they could potentially be good forever. I actually still have my college ID(and an extra one) and it comes in handy every once in a while to save me a few bucks.
Alternatively, if you feel like doing a little work you could always go for an ‘East County Lemonade’. That’s a San Diego reference, but essentially you fill up your water cup and squeeze a bunch of the free lemon slices in there, add some sugar and you’ve got a free lemonade!
My last article generated a lot of passionate comments and e-mails with some unique ways to save money. And by ‘unique’ I mean illegal(haha) but here are just a few of the ideas my readers came up with:
- Free Soda – Since Chipotle is self-serve sodas and their water cups look just like soda cups, you can pretty easily steal a soda here.
- All You Can Eat Hot Sauce – Chipotle carries three different types of Tabasco hot sauces – Regular, Chipotle and Green Pepper. If one of them should make their way into your to go bag, you’ve just earned yourself a free bottle of hot sauce, haha!
- The Lettuce Trick – This is one of the most creative ways I’ve ever heard of to get free guacamole. It borders on illegal/negligence but I think it’s worth a shot. We all know that it’s $3 extra for that amazing guacamole but if you add on a ton of shredded lettuce at the end of your burrito bowl they may not notice the guac when they ring up your order. According to one reader, this trick has a 50% success ratio.
I’m glad to see my site is breeding a passionate band of bandits and deal seekers, that’s what I like to see!
Readers, what do you think about the follow up piece to my most popular article of all time? Who would have thought so many people were interested in saving money at Chipotle?
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It’s one thing to be frugal and another to be a cheat. If you’re no longer a student, it’s just wrong to use your old student ID card to score free soda/stuff meant for current students.
For goodness sake, you already have a degree and gainfully employed so fork up a dollar or so for that soda. Better yet, don’t drink soda, it’s not healthy anyway.
Harry Campbell says
I know what you mean but my morality tends to dip when I’m dealing with mega corps. I wouldn’t cheat a mom and pop business but I could care less about giant corps like Chipotle, AMC, or other big retailers where you get discounts for using a student id. And you’re right about the soda, I don’t drink it very often b/c it’s so unhealthy haha.
I’m all about great deals but cheating is where it crosses the line. If you owned the business would it be ok for people to cheat you? Just saying!
Large business or small, cheating hurts us all.
harry campbell says
Yea I agree with your sentiment but I honestly have no problem cheating big businesses like Walmart or similar retailers. I wouldn’t outright steal but if they make a mistake it’s not my responsibility to tell them so. If it was a mom and pop type store and they gave me extra change or something I’d always give it back.
To each his own..