What to Eat: Burritos or Tacos?

Are tacos worse because their tortillas are usually fried?

Flour tortillas are worse than soft or crispy (fried) corn tortillas. At Chipotle or Qdoba, for example, a burrito’s flour tortilla has around 300 calories’ worth of mostly white flour, plus around 700 milligrams of sodium.

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In contrast, three crispy taco-size corn tortillas at either chain have roughly 180 calories and 50 mg of sodium. Soft corn tortillas (Qdoba doesn’t offer them) are about the same. Three soft taco-size flour tortillas? You might as well get the burrito tortilla.

But it’s not just the wrapper. Most people fill a burrito with rice (even more carbs!), beans, chicken, salsa, and cheese. Grand total: some 1,000 calories (and 2,000+ mg of sodium). Three crispy tacos with chicken, cheese, salsa, and lettuce total about 500 calories (and 1,000 mg of sodium).

Tip: Lose the flour tortilla. Get a Burrito Bowl at Chipotle or a Naked Burrito at Qdoba. With brown rice, chicken, black beans, salsa, and cheese, it’s about 600 calories. Or get a salad (same ingredients, but with lettuce instead of rice). At Chipotle, use the tomato or green salsa instead of the 260-calorie vinaigrette. Qdoba’s dressings are low-cal. Just skip its fried tortilla bowl.

 

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