Long before their company tagline was “Live Mas” (“Live More”), Taco Bell asked its current and potential customers to “Think Outside the Bun.” The older tagline was a great way to try and get people to remember that fast food didn’t have to mean a boring burger and forgettable fries. Instead, why not think Mexico and go for a taco?
For years, Taco Bell was known as the fast food chosen by partying college kids who got sudden hunger pangs at 2:00 in the morning. It wasn’t the first place that soccer moms thought to take their little starving athletes on the way home from practice. With that one slogan about thinking outside the bun, Taco Bell started to change their image and their appeal. They carried that change around the world, opening up new restaurants all around the globe. And in those new restaurants, they took the challenge of thinking outside the bun – and thinking about the new cultures they were cooking for – to a whole new level.
Here’s a list of the 20 weird but ultimately fantastic food items we found on Taco Bell menus from around the world. Warning: reading this list could make you really want to "Live Mas" and immediately purchase a plane ticket so you can Taco Bell-hop around the world. We are not responsible for any flights you purchase after being introduced to this food.
20 Cheetos Crunchwrap Supreme (Canada)
Ah, the third menu item on our list featuring Cheetos and the second one from Canada. Once again, we’re getting a standard menu item (the Crunchwrap Supreme) that is made that much more magical by the addition of Cheetos to the mix. Despite its name, the only “crunch” in the Crunchwrap used to be from the crisp outside of the burrito which was crisped on a griddle before serving. Now Cheetos adds an extra element of crunch to the Crunchwrap, making it extra delectable. Combine that with the regular elements of beef, nacho cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, and sour cream and you have yourself one great Taco Bell menu item.
19 Chicken Tikka Masala Burrito (India)
Chicken Tikka Masala is a dish that has been around India forever, which means it was a natural fit for Taco Bell to try to incorporate into a dish when they began to build their menu items for India. Taco Bell settled on a Chicken Tikka Masala Burrito that is every bit as delicious as it sounds. Typical Chicken Tikka Masala is made by marinating the chicken in spicy yogurt and then cooking it with a kicking curry sauce. Taco Bell took that chicken, added rice, cilantro, onion, and a Tandoori mayonnaise, then wrapped the whole thing in a flour tortilla. It’s opening the door to a whole new style of food: MexIndia.
18 Kimchi Quesadilla (South Korea)
Kimchi is something that was widely unknown to people outside of Korea or the larger area of Asia not so long ago. Some of that may be due to what it is. Kimchi is a fermented vegetable dish, something that westerners can’t always wrap their heads around. It’s got a strong flavor profile that can turn people away, but it’s got great health benefits that might be able to convince you to start introducing it into your diet. It can be served on its own as a side dish, but it’s also often incorporated into noodle and rice dishes or used as a spread in a sandwich. Taco Bell has mixed kimchi with spicy, shredded chicken, put it on a tortilla, added some cheese, and made it into a quesadilla. The result is something you have to try. You know, the next time you’re in South Korea.
17 Fry-Stuffed Burrito (Chile)
This is one of the tamer items on the menu, but still something that people in North America are missing out on. Mightily. This fantastic item combines lots of typical flavors you’d expect from Taco Bell – seasoned ground beef, nacho cheese sauce, tomatoes, and sour cream – and then adds the universally beloved fry to the mix. The addition of potatoes with a crispy outside and soft inside adds just enough awesomeness to the regular burrito that you’ll find yourself wondering why no one thought of this before Taco Bell rolled it out in Chile. Now if only we can convince Taco Bell franchises in the US to start selling fries and this beauty could be available in the U.S.A.
16 BBQ Pork Griller, Taco, & Quesadilla (Finland)
Finland must love them some barbecue pork. They feature not just one item with it, but three different ones, and all look great. Let’s break it down. First, there’s the Griller, which is a burrito with the pork, rice, cheese, onions, and tomatoes wrapped up in a flour tortilla. If you’d prefer a taco, you can have the pork in a crispy corn shell with the usual taco toppings of lettuce, cheese, and pico de gallo. Finally, there’s the quesadilla. It does away with the fresher ingredients and sticks with the good stuff: nacho cheese, extra barbecue sauce, and the pork, all flattened together inside the warm wrapping of a flour tortilla. Whichever one you choose, you can’t go wrong.
15 Doritos Locos Nachos (Dominican Republic)
Just when we were thinking there was no way to improve upon the nacho, which was already pretty much the perfect food, along comes the chefs who created the Taco Bell menu for the Dominican Republic to take it up a notch and make it that much more awesome. How did they do it? They replaced the plain corn chip, which we didn’t even realize was that plain, with Nacho Cheese Doritos, which we didn’t even know we were missing. Add the regular beef, nacho cheese, tomatoes, and sour cream, and you have got yourself a whole new treat that you can’t wait to get at Taco Bell. Which you can, if you’re ready to fly to the Dominican Republic.
14 Shrimp and Avocado Burrito (Japan)
It’s as simple as it sounds, and yet sometimes the most simple ingredients pack the best flavors. Being that it’s an island, Japan has always been known for its fresh seafood. So in creating the perfect menu for their Japanese restaurants, Taco Bell started there, with marinated shrimp. Then they added lettuce, salsa, and guacamole made from fresh avocados. Instead of stopping there, which would have been great enough, they threw in one more ingredient that Japanese people know and love: wasabi. They mixed wasabi with mayonnaise and added that to their shrimp burrito. An immediate Japanese fast food classic was born.
13 Chocomarsh Wrap (Spain)
It appears as if Spain just can’t get enough of putting chocolate in its food to create treats that the rest of the world is super jealous of. In addition to the Chocodilla, Taco Bells in Spain have also rolled out the Chocomarsh, which is an appropriately name product because it mixes chocolate and marshmallow together, melts them, and then puts all of that gooey greatness inside a wrap, basically creating a dessert Crunchwrap. Somehow this treat hasn’t yet found its way to the United States. We’re expecting the appropriate angry riots to break out once people in the US realize they’ve been deprived of another chocolate dessert at Taco Bell.
12 Taco Pizza (Mexico)
People love pizza and people love tacos. Really it’s amazing to think it took centuries to combine the two together and market it to people. And this pizza isn’t just one layer. It’s three. That’s right, three layers of great flavor. The geniuses in the Taco Bell kitchen started three tostadas (think about a hard taco shell being flat instead of curved). On top of the first one, they put a layer of seasoned ground beef and soft nacho cheese. Then they place a second tostada on top of that, and put tomatoes and cheese. Then put the third tostada on, and top that with salsa and melted cheese. A triple layer treat that will satisfy all of your cravings, which is appropriate since you have to go to Mexico to get it.
11 Loaded Fries (U.K., Japan, Chile, South Korea)
Taco Bells in other countries have embraced fries, both tucked inside other food and as stand-alone items on their menu. They’ve done it so often that we in America, land of French fry lovers, have been left out of the loop. If Taco Bell wants to jump into the fry pool and make a dent in the market, it seems like loaded fries would be a great place to start. It’s basically a bowl of French fries with the insides of a taco put on top of them. Um, yum. Fries with seasoned ground beef, nacho cheese, pico de gallo, and sour cream? Yes, please, Taco Bell. Don’t make America beg.
10 Beefy Cheddar Cheetos Crunchwrap Slider (Canada)
There are three items on our list that include Cheetos. Two of the three come from Canada. Oh, Canada. You’ve already given the world so many things, not the least of which is Ryan Reynolds. Now you find a way to include our beloved Cheetos in two Taco Bell menu items? Just when we thought we couldn’t love you more, we do. The Beefy Cheddar Crunchwrap would have been great all on its own with its seasoned beef and nacho cheese folded into a crispy tortilla. But the addition of jalapeno-flavored Cheetos took this item over the top and added a new layer of crunch and cheesy goodness. Make it a little smaller and you can call it a slider, which is exactly what Taco Bell did.
9 Cheetos Quesadilla (Philippines)
This Cheeto-enriched item comes to us from the Philippines. Truthfully, we can’t name another famous export from the Philippines, which is all the more reason to set this food gem free on the world and give the whole country something to be known for in far-off lands. It’s a basic recipe, really. You take Cheetos, add cheese, throw in some chicken, and press it all together in a flour tortilla until it’s flat and warm and yummy. We’re not sure how they manage to keep the Cheetos crispy to give this quesadilla such a unique texture, but they have. Maybe that secret could be their second export.
8 Fried Chicken and Rice (Saudi Arabia)
Fried chicken and rice isn’t really a weird item to have on a menu – unless the menu is for a Mexico-style fast food restaurant. Then the absence of tortillas in some form is a surprising choice. It’s so simple, you might wonder what’s missing. The answer is nothing. Take seasoned fried chicken, slice it up, and place it onto a bed of flavored rice and it turns out you don’t need chips, sour cream, or even salsa. You just need a fork and an appetite, and you and this dish will get along great. Come on, America. Don’t just think outside the bun. Think outside the taco show.
7 Chocodilla (Philippines, Latin America, U.K., Spain, and other locations)
There are two entries on our list that feature everyone’s favorite sweet treat: chocolate. This one is called the Chocodilla, and combines a flour tortilla with melted Kit Kat or Twix bars. It was introduced in the United Kingdom in 2016 and spread across the pond a year later. You read that right – Taco Bell rolled out a test of the Chocodilla in Wisconsin in the fall of 2017. It never rolled out across the country though, leaving many across America with dreams of tasting it shattered. While the U.S. was being deprived, it may hurt even more deeply to know that people in the Philippines once featured a Chocodilla with Nutella, and people in South America has had versions that featured Baby Ruth and Butterfinger candy bars pieces melted inside a tortilla. Dare to dream, America. Maybe one day it will come back.
6 Banurrito (Cyprus)
Ah, Cyprus. You’ve done it again. First, you captured our hearts - not to mention our taste buds - with the Gordita with tzatziki sauce. Now you bring us the Banurrito, which is just as awesome as its clever combined name. You started with a beautiful banana and coat it with a thick layer of Nutella. Just wait though - there’s more to come. Next, you toasted a flour tortilla and wrapped it around the banana, giving it a warm hug that got us salivating. Then you took it up one more notch by drizzling it in chocolate sauce. And as if all of that wasn’t enough, you appealed to the dessert-loving child in all of us by topping this incredible sweet treat with a healthy dose of rainbow sprinkles. It’s a treat for the eyes and the mouth, and it makes us want to book a trip to Cyprus. Like, now.
5 Taquito Lupita (Spain)
Here comes Taco Bell Spain with yet another fabulous dessert designed to have you drooling. This one is a little bit different, though, because it doesn’t have any chocolate. Instead it’s a simple crispy, rolled up flour tortilla. They put that on the plate and dust it with cinnamon sugar. Then they put a generous serving of vanilla soft serve ice cream next to it, before topping both the tortilla and the ice cream with a dulce de leche sauce. (For those of you who aren’t total foodies, dulce de leche is sweetened milk that has been heated until it changes color and flavor. The end result is something very similar to caramel.) It just might be in the running for being one of the most elegant fast food desserts.
4 Flauta Dulce (Latin America)
The idea behind this dessert is so simple that we wonder how other restaurants haven’t thought of it before. It’s a basic flour tortilla filled with dulce de leche. Dulce de leche, as we already mentioned, is basically a smooth and creamy sauce that’s very similar to caramel sauce. Then the wrap filled with dulce de leche is deep fried. That’s it. And it’s so good all on its own, no extras needed. You can find this menu item all over Latin America, so if you want to seek this out and give it a try (and trust us, you do), you have your choice of countries in which to find it.
3 Gordita with Tzatziki Sauce (Cyprus)
Let’s have a little geography lesson before talk about the treat that is the Gordita with tzatziki sauce. It’s an island nation in the Mediterranean located near Greece, Egypt, Turkey, and Syria. This Gordita is definitely inspired by the flavors of the Mediterranean. Tzatziki is made from yogurt, cucumbers, and garlic, and is used as commonly in that part of the world as ketchup or ranch dressing might be in North America. Using the sauce as a central piece of their new food item, Taco Bell added chicken, lettuce, salsa, and – wait for it – French fries to it. All that is wrapped up in a flatbread to create a delicious new item that we wish would travel across the Atlantic to make its way to the U.S.A.
2 Kathitto (India)
The first of two items that made it on our list from Taco Bell's India menu is the Kathitto. As usual, when it doubt, make a food Mexic0-ish by putting it in a burrito. So that’s exactly what Taco Bell did. They took the typical fillings that they use often (chicken, salsa, lettuce, cheese, sauces, etc.) and put them on dhakai paratha. For those not familiar with India's food, paratha is a type of flatbread which literally translates to “layers of cooked dough.” Dhakai is the fried version of paratha. What does that mean for you when you eat a Kathitto? It means a whole new level of awesome taste.
1 Cheesy Fiesta Potatoes (India)
If you ever sat and studied Taco Bell’s US menu and wondered what was missing, we’re guessing the answer you ultimately came up with was tater tots. Why? Well, first, when don’t tater tots make everything better? Secondly, these aren’t just any tater tots. They’re tater tots with zesty flavors. It’s your basic potato nugget (crispy on the outside, soft on the inside), topped with spicy nacho cheese, green onions, tomatoes, sour cream, and onions. If you’re thinking “yum,” you’d be right. Between this and all the other tasty menu items on this list with potatoes in them, it’s got us wondering what Taco Bell America has against the spud?