FOOD: Taco Bell – Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries and Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries Burrito

Taco Bell, PLEASE just add Nacho Fries to your full time menu. We know you want to. Everybody loves them. Everybody wants them. You’ve been coasting off of the McRib effect for long enough and it’s time to just add Nacho Fries full time and make everybody happy.

In case you eat like a functioning person and didn’t know, Nacho Fries are basically the best french fries in fast food right now. They’re crisp, soft, and seasoned with a delicious blend of spices that add a dimension of flavor beyond the basic salted fries offered by every fast food chain that isn’t Arby’s or Rally’s/Checkers. They even come with their own side of nacho cheese to dip! How can you argue against that?

Taco Bell is obviously proud of their Nacho Fries and sometimes will mix things up with the addition of other ingredients. We had tried the Rattlesnake Steak fries, to good results; we had missed out on the Reaper Nacho Fries, to our disappointment. When they make these additions to the Nacho Fry formula, they also offer them wrapped up in a tortilla as a burrito too. We love the idea of a french fry burrito. It’s something to distinctively Taco Bell, something that vaguely has the shape of “Mexican food” but is so distantly detached from authenticity as to become a new kind of cuisine all together. 

So now that Nacho Fries are back, they’ve come with a new version to try: the Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries, complete with Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries Burrito. They can’t screw this up. They physically can’t make a Nacho Fries that is not good to eat. They can’t.

They can’t.

And guess what: these are good to eat! 

We ordered both the “regular” Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries, which are served on a dish like actual nachos, along with one of the burritos. The serving size for both of these were very small. We paid $2.99 at our location, which is a lot cheaper than quotes I’ve seem from people in other states, but it’s not so small as to feel like a ripoff. We split the fries plate between the two off us and we both felt like we had eaten “enough” fries. We think the fries plate had the same amount of food as the burrito did, but there’s no real way to make sure.

But, really, the fries plate was surprisingly good. The buffalo sauce, which is mayo-based, was disappointingly not spicy whatsoever and mostly tasted like vinegar. It tasted like Tabasco, which is a frankly heretical sauce to use for buffalo chicken. The chicken was sparse, but what was there was moist and flavorful. The rest of the ingredients were nothing worth remarking about. The sour cream and pico de gallo were the same as Taco Bell’s sour cream and pico de gallo always are: bland glop and little watery balls of unpleasant crunch respectively. The cheese was hardly noticeable. The fries really carry this and carry it hard. I don’t even think this would work as nachos. This is a testament to the quality of the Nacho Fries. Please, Taco Bell, add them to the full time menu.

And yet…. The burrito… Oh man, the burrito. How could they have messed this up? It was perfectly poised to be just fine, great even, and Taco Bell fumbles the ball so hard it leaves a crater. We can hardly begin. Oh, reader, it was like having to choke down a rubber hose of sour cream. It was wet. Wet. Wet. You couldn’t comfortably take bites of it because you have to wrap your entire mouth around it just to keep it from squiring sour cream and buffalo sauce everywhere. There was by no means enough fries to keep the texture interesting, and the occasional grunch of a piece of pico de gallo was an unpleasantly textural sensation on your back molars. Make so much as one wrong move and the whole thing will explode, showering you with sauce. If you simply must try this, PLEASE ask for it to be grilled. That might give it a crispiness you need to make it edible.

How could Taco Bell screw this up? It did fine with the Rattlesnake burrito! The Rattlesnake burrito was way better than the plate in virtually every aspect, from texture to flavor! We really thought that the Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries Burrito was going to be amazing. The fact that the plate of plain loaded fries was superior to the burrito is a crushing disappointment. Putting the Nacho Fries in a burrito is a time-tested success. They could do it before, why couldn’t they do it now? The fact that the Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries burrito has multiple sauces isn’t the issue – it would be simple to just apply a reasonable amount of each sauce to the burrito and let the fries do the hard work. But this was loaded with sauce! There wasn’t even any detectable chicken in it! It was almost intolerable to eat.

Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries: 3 out of 5 – Worth Trying (Wouldn’t Get It Again)
Buffalo Chicken Nacho Fries Burrito: 2 out of 5 – Not Worth Trying

Nacho Fries are good. They are very, very good, and we want them on Taco Bell’s menu full time. We like Taco Bell, and we feel like it has some very good menu items (almost all of them on the breakfast menu, mind you). But putting a menu item like this out, even for an LTO… It is a serious misstep on what should have been a slam dunk. We will admit that Taco Bell is not the highest quality food, but it has a reputation among its trashy fellows to uphold. Skip the burrito and get the plate. Better yet, go in around 10 AM and get a breakfast crunchwrap with the fries. You’ll be glad you did.

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