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For the Animals, For the Earth, For Ourselves.
Taco Bell-- soy meat? 
1st-Oct-2005 02:44 am
stock - fence
I heard something again tonight that I have heard several times before. A lady that said she "used to be vegetarian" claimed to have eaten Taco Bell during that period because it's soy-based. I have another friend that swears that she has a friend that works at Taco Bell... and he looked at the box or something and the ingredients proclaim that their meat is imitation. Is this true? I don't know that I trust this enough to go out and buy a soft taco, but... I just wanted to know if there was any truth to the rumor. I can't find anything on the official site, Snopes, or a Google search.
1st-Oct-2005 07:46 am (UTC)
No. It is not true. Taco Bell uses beef. However, their beans do not have lard in them, so bean tacos are fine for vegetarians.
1st-Oct-2005 08:01 am (UTC)
OMG, I use to love the bean tacos when I first went veggie but the amount of confusion I caused the workers was hilarious.
4th-Oct-2005 06:51 am (UTC)
oh man, they get SO MAD when you correct them. it's funnnnny.
1st-Oct-2005 08:33 pm (UTC)
Good thing. I love to get frito burritos with beans instead of the chili mix. I also like the seven-layer burrito and bean tostadas. Taco Bell has always been a good place for quick (if unhealthy) vegetarian-friendly food when I'm on the go... I was just wondering if it was possible that I'd have more of an option there. I'm glad I checked with the intelligent members of vegetarian first, though!
2nd-Oct-2005 06:38 pm (UTC)
I heard the sour cream is not veg. :/
2nd-Oct-2005 08:54 pm (UTC)
Not technically. It contains a small amount of gelatin. If you don't eat gelatin, you can order seven-layer burritos sans the sour cream.
1st-Oct-2005 08:01 am (UTC)
I've never heard that. I had heard that Jack in the Box tacos were vegetarian, but never about Taco Bell.
1st-Oct-2005 08:31 pm (UTC)
I wonder if there is any truth to the Jack-in-the-Box rumor?
1st-Oct-2005 11:57 pm (UTC)
Nope, the Beef Tacos actually contain beef, and use soy as a filler. (Scroll down to "Beef Regular Taco or Beef Monster Taco.")
1st-Oct-2005 09:10 am (UTC)
It's meat. Their sour cream has gelatin in it too. The beans are vegetarian, as is the rice.

(my mother works at a Taco Bell)
1st-Oct-2005 04:04 pm (UTC)
Interesting, as my sister used to work at TB and said the sour cream was safe...
1st-Oct-2005 08:23 pm (UTC)
Maybe she didn't know that gelatin wasn't vegetarian-friendly.
1st-Oct-2005 08:26 pm (UTC)
No, seeing as she was a vegetarian and had grown up in a family of vegetarians.
1st-Oct-2005 08:29 pm (UTC)
Ah, okay. I guess it's possible that she skipped over the gelatin ingredient because I have seen official correspondence from TB that claims they use gelatin in the sour cream.
1st-Oct-2005 08:31 pm (UTC)
No. It's not like she only looked at the ingredients once. I think it's more possible that 1) they didn't use it at the time or 2) her location didn't use sour cream with gelatin.
1st-Oct-2005 08:35 pm (UTC)
Definitely a possibility. Some states require different standards on different food items. Also, if it was in Hawaii or Canada, I think things are really different there.
1st-Oct-2005 10:10 pm (UTC)
2nd-Oct-2005 06:56 am (UTC)
Yes, they have different standards.
1st-Oct-2005 09:35 am (UTC) - stick to the beans
I worked at Taco Bell a few years back... the meat has soy protein added, but it's beef all right.

You could always call 1-800-TACO BELL. But from what I remember on the allergy chart we had at work, the beef contained beef, soy protein, tomato sauce, oatmeal and some spices and preservatives. I live in Canada so maybe it's different?

Maybe she was just confused by the "soy protein" ingredient. I seem to remember it saying on the box "Contains 25% soy protein" or something similar.

I don't know about the rice being vegetarian.. we used to mix either butter or shortening with it.. I'm not sure which.
1st-Oct-2005 02:42 pm (UTC) - Re: stick to the beans
This is what I've heard also. It's a filler. Makes it cheaper for their purchasing but they can still charge more because it's meat.

A lot of places are doing this now, I've noticed soy filler in anything that is ground meat, sausages, etc.
1st-Oct-2005 02:12 pm (UTC)
I actually heard the opposite. A friend of mine who used to work for Taco Bell said that they had to pull the veins out of the beef, or something like that. That image has alwyas stuck in my mind. . .
1st-Oct-2005 04:22 pm (UTC)
I know that it's definately not only soy. I have never read the ingredients (although it seems weird that it isn't on the website they usually have ingredients) it's probably mainly meat.

I had "vegetarian" friends in high school years ago that claimed jack in the box tacos were "soy" years later I read the ingredients online and the first (and most) ingredient is beef fat or something.

Don't trust fast food because even if it was a lot of soy there's no way it would be completely veg. It'll always have fat or something to flavor it.
1st-Oct-2005 04:24 pm (UTC)
PS your icon looks like Ron Weasley.
1st-Oct-2005 08:25 pm (UTC)
It's definitely Ron.
1st-Oct-2005 04:36 pm (UTC)
My friend's father works at the Pentagon and he did a report on the meat used by Taco Bell. At the time of the report they used Grade B beef. I'm sure they've upgraded to A after the Pentagon saught them out, but yeah. Definitely real beef.
1st-Oct-2005 08:30 pm (UTC)
How disappointing! Thanks for the info.
2nd-Oct-2005 02:29 am (UTC)
taco bell is my fast food of choice, thanks to the yum bean burrito (and my addiction to mexican food.)
12th-Dec-2014 01:14 am (UTC)
Taco Bell has many great options for vegans! The fast-food chain has a variety of sides that are vegan—including the cinnamon twists, chips and guacamole (or pico de gallo), cilantro rice, black or refried beans, and Mexican rice—and all of its salsas are vegan.
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