How to Build a Diabetes-Friendly Meal at Chipotle

Mexican food is one of my favorite types of cuisine, and Chipotle is a must! And many of my clients love it too!

But if you have diabetes, we need to aware that typical Chipotle meals can have many hidden carbs. That doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy this type of cuisine, it just means we need to be mindful!

Interested in more tips to manage your blood sugar without a restrictive diet mindset? We’ve created a Gentle Nutrition Guide to Diabetes that is full of helpful information and tips for intuitive eating with diabetes! 

diabetes chipotle meals

 

We want to be aware of where the carbs are coming from in your meal. The main sources of carbs at Chipotle come from Grains (tortillas, rice, chips) and Starchy Veggies (Beans, and Corn).

Each of my meals are between 45-60 g carbs. However, these are just general recommendations, and may not be appropriate for each individual.

For more personalized carb counts and specific nutrition recommendations, please make an appointment with one of our registered dietitians.

Three High Protein, Diabetes-Friendly Chipotle Meals

A quick note, the protein sources in these meals are pretty interchangeable. The chicken, steak, carnitas, etc have 0g of carbs according to the Chipotle menu, so feel free to switch it up if you like.

You can also go here and build your own chipotle order to see how many carbs it would be! You will also notice that I don’t have a burrito listed below.

As delicious as a good burrito is, just the tortilla is 45g of carbs! That doesn’t leave a lot of room for other sources of carbs such as beans, rice, and corn!

diabetes chipotle

3 Crispy Corn Tacos with Steak, Fajita Veggies, Pico, Tomatillo Salsa, Cheese, Guac, Lettuce (53 g total carbohydrate)

The crispy corn taco shells have fewer carbs than the soft corn or the flour shells and account for most of the carbs in the meal. The fajitas and pico de gallo provide extra veggies, and feel free to add the hot salsa if you like it.

diabetes-friendly chipotle

Chipotle salad, Chicken, Fajita Veggies, Black Beans, Pico, Corn, Tomatillo Salsa, Sour Cream, Cheese (57 g total carbohydrate)

By using a salad base, we have more room to include some starchy veggies like black beans and corn. You can also include hot salsa if you like it.

If you are not a fan of sour cream, you can omit it, or substitute for guacamole (it will increase the carb count by about 8 g carbs).

In case you are a fan of the vinaigrette, you can make a copycat honey chipotle vinaigrette at home! 

diabetes-friendly chipotle bowl

Burrito Bowl, Carnitas, Brown Rice, Fajita Veggies, Pico, Tomatillo Salsa, Cheese, Guac, Lettuce (59 g total carbohydrate)

The burrito bowl is a great option at Chipotle and a great substitute to the burrito! We are using brown rice as our main source of carb in this meal and including the other toppings as desired.

No, I didn’t include the black beans and corn in this meal because they would have made the carb count too high.

Lifestyle Bowls to Try for Diabetes

Chipotle has come out with “Lifestyle Bowls” which are geared towards people’s specific nutrition needs. While we don’t recommend following fad or restrictive diets, you could order one of these lifestyle bowls for a low carb option. 

The Wholesome Bowl is super greens, chicken, veggies, salsa and guac and is 18 grams of carbohydrate. The Keto Salad Bowl is super greens, chicken, salsa, sour cream, and cheese and is 12 grams of carbohydrate. 

Plant Based Options for Balanced Blood Sugars

You can still get a balanced meal with Chipotle’s plant based options. Did you know they have sofriitas, which is a soy protein? 

2 Crispy Corn Tacos with Fajita Veggies, Black Beans, Pico, Cheese, Guac, and Lettuce (46 grams of total carbohydrate)

The “veggie” option is just the inclusion of guacamole instead of a protein. I added beans and cheese for the protein! 

Burrito Bowl with Sofritas, Black Beans, Fajita Veggies, Pico, Cheese, Sour Cream, and Lettuce (44 grams of total carbohydrate)

Sofritas are made from soybean and veggies and have 6 grams of carbohydrate and 8 grams of protein. With a little more wiggle room for carbs and to add some more protein, I opted for beans in the bowl (however no rice to keep the carbs within our goal).

Still sound like a lot of carbohydrate?

Remember, some of this carbohydrate is also fiber which will not raise blood sugar, and will actually help keep your blood sugars more stable. All of these meal options listed contain between 11-14 grams of fiber!

Blog reviewed and updated March 2024

 

Want to see what else you can also get on the road that is diabetes friendly?

See our Diabetic Friendly Recommendations at Chick-fil-a:

If you like to eat out and manage your diabetes at the same time, take a look at one of our most popular blogs.

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Klara Knezevic is a registered dietitian nutritionist based in Maryland. She has over a decade of experience in the nutrition field and currently serves as the CEO and co-owner of Rebecca Bitzer and Associates, one of the largest nutrition private practices in the country. Klara is passionate about sharing practical nutrition tips to help you feel confident in the choices that you make. Coauthor of Cooking with Food Sensitivities Survival Guide and Nourished: 10 Ingredients to Happy, Healthy Eating.