Chipotle's Portions Are Regulated By A Strict Monitoring System

Even the best laid plans for a light meal can go awry at Chipotle. The seemingly limitless topping options are hard to resist as you make your way down the assembly line, and before you know it, you can amass quite the hefty creation. A burrito bowl at Chipotle can contain any of six meat options, your choice of two kinds of rice and beans, and 10 other fixings that can go on top. The endless options are tempting, despite the up-charge for some add-ons like guac.

Chipotle was going viral on TikTok because of its portion sizes last year; customers noticed that their helpings of each item on the assembly line seemed smaller. While the portions may have been smaller than what they were used to, Chipotle was actually sticking to the rule book. As Chipotle began serving more customers who ordered online and through the app during the Covid-19 pandemic, employees didn't have to deal with people standing in the line and asking for additional scoops of rice and such. According to Mental Floss, there's a reason Chipotle is so careful about portion sizes.

Standard portion sizes create standardized experiences

Standard portion sizes are an integral part of the fast food and fast casual experience, according to LiveAbout. Portion control ensures customers get the same meal every time, and Chipotle is no different. AsĀ Mental Floss reported, the chain has a system for monitoring how much food its customers are being served.

At Chipotle, portion sizes are actually rigidly regulated. A database keeps track of how much food is being served, and losses are not taken lightly. Mental Floss also indicated that employees on Chipotle's assembly line wish they could give you bigger portions, but the pressure to stay consistent with the rules is too great.

Prices at Chipotle are determined by a specific serving size, per Fox8, which notes that employees are directed to serve four ounces of meat and rice, two ounces of salsa, and one ounce of cheese or lettuce. While employees have some leeway to give extra rice or salsa, they must stick to the standard size for more costly ingredients, like meats and cheese.