The Real Reason Taco Bell Doesn't Use Fresh Jalapeños

The Mexican fast food chain Taco Bell is known to experiment with adding some spice to its menu. In addition to dishes that contain a fair amount of heat on their own, such as the Spicy Cheesy Double Beef Burrito, fans can customize their orders to kick up the heat level by topping their meal off with the chain's famous "Fire" hot sauce or adding extra jalapeño peppers for a slight upcharge. Jalapeños can be a great way to add a little extra spice and flavor to any dish.

However, while fresh jalapeños can bring the flavor of many meals up a level, not everyone feels the same way about the version of the ingredient that is served at Taco Bell. One customer took to social media with one major complaint: "Why doesn't Taco Bell offer fresh jalapeños?" a user asked their fellow Taco Bell fans on Reddit. The chain uses pickled, rather than fresh, jalapeños, and many commenters replied with the same answer as to why that is the case.

Fresh jalapeños spoil faster than pickled jalapeños

Many Redditors were quick to point out that fresh vegetables spoil much sooner than pickled ones do. "Once they're chopped they go bad really quick," replied one user, while another pointed out that fresh vegetables "have a shorter shelf life and would just get thrown out and wasted." While this seems to be the most likely reason, some people offered other likely suggestions: Preparing fresh jalapeños can be time-consuming and even dangerous, and "fresh jalapeños are too spicy for normal people."

Other Reddit users simply lambasted the quality of Taco Bell's food as a whole. "I can't believe I read 'Taco Bell' and 'fresh' in the same sentence," one person replied. "Why make one item on the menu fresh, when nothing else is?" joked another user. However, while some commenters took this opportunity to make digs at Taco Bell's lack of freshness, others came to the defense of pickled jalapeños. "Because pickled jalapeños are superior every way to normal jalapeños," someone answered. "Idk what it is about them, I absolutely love the flavor of the pickled over fresh. Just that salty sour and mild spice taste, chef's kiss," a Redditor agreed, while another user said fresh jalapeños "have a bit of a grassy taste to them." So while there are certainly quite a few complaints about Taco Bell's jalapeños, some fans seem to prefer the chain's approach to this controversial ingredient.