What Are Taco Bell's Fiesta Strips And What Menu Items Feature Them?

Taco Bell may be just fast food, but its vast array of items keeps customers wanting more. From tacos and burritos to nachos and quesadillas, quick and convenient meal options are one of the reasons Taco Bell reigns supreme in the minds of many fans. Although the menu changes fairly regularly, with items like the Cheesy Chicken Crispanada seemingly there one day and gone the next, the chain is constantly finding new ways to incorporate its famous Fiesta Strips.

The unique, thin, red-purple-and-orange tortilla strips provide a crunchy and colorful element to the items they're added to. While the flavor is similar to seasoned tortilla chips, with savory, nutty notes, they were originally known as "crunchy red strips" and were included in the chicken Caesar grilled stuffed burrito, one of the discontinued Taco Bell items you probably forgot existed.

While these red strips were seen in various items in Taco Bell's grilled stuffed burrito line throughout the early 2000s, they didn't stay on the menu permanently. The red strips were eventually replaced with the multi-colored Fiesta Strips. The reason for this is unknown, but self-reported Taco Bell employees on Reddit note that, despite the color change, the taste is identical. Currently, Taco Bell's Fiesta Strips come on the double stacked taco, the cheesy double beef burrito, the grilled cheese burrito, and its vegetarian variant, the black bean grilled cheese burrito.

Fiesta Strips are available on several Taco Bell items

Understandably, the items featuring these strips are quite exciting to fans. The grilled cheese burrito comes with Fiesta Strips, rice, nacho cheese, a shredded three-cheese blend, sour cream, chipotle sauce, and beef or black beans — with melted cheese on top. Similarly, the cheesy double beef burrito includes twice as much beef as a crunchy taco, along with rice, nacho cheese, shredded cheese, sour cream, and Fiesta Strips. Finally, the double stacked taco uses nacho cheese to adhere a soft taco-sized tortilla to a crunchy taco shell. Inside, there's beef, lettuce, cheese, and Fiesta Strips.

Not only do the items that include these crunchy tortilla strips sound tasty to many consumers, but they're also on the Cravings Value Menu, which features items for $2.99 or less. However, not all Taco Bell-lovers are excited about Fiesta Strips. One Reddit thread indicates users can't seem to agree on them. Some commenters love them, claiming they add a nice crunch to their burritos. However, others call the strips flavorless, noting that "they turn into mush and just add empty calories."

Many find that eating their food before leaving the parking lot offers the best chance for Fiesta Strips to keep their crunch. However, when ordering in person, customers can ask for extra Fiesta Strips on the side for $0.30 and then add them to various items themselves. With big changes coming to Taco Bell in 2024 and likely beyond, there will probably be many opportunities to give Fiesta Strips a fair shot going forward.