Chipotle CEO Mocked For His Response to the Restaurant's Portion Sizes

Chipotle’s CEO Brian Niccol faced ridicule for his response to complaints about small portions. In a TikTok by Fortune, Niccol addressed claims that Chipotle’s bowls have less meat and veggies now. He argued that’s not accurate, suggesting customers signal if they want more food.

@fortune Chipotle CEO: Our portion sizes aren’t getting smaller—but you can get more rice or pico by giving a look. #chipotle #chipotleportions #chipotleorder #ceo #portionsizes #business #businesstiktok #businesstok #food #foodie #foodtok #restaurant #fastfood #mexicanfood #burrito #dinner #eat #news #chipotlehacks ♬ original sound - Fortune Magazine

“First, I can tell you the portions have not gotten smaller. One of the things I think is great about Chipotle is if you come into the restaurant, and you want a little more rice, or you want a little more pico,” he said, mimicking a shrug to signal more food.

Niccol praised employees who add extra food when customers subtly ask for more. “And usually our guys, and women, give them a little more scoop,” he said. “We always want to give people big portions that get them excited about food. It’s kind of who we are. These are big burritos. They’re big bowls.”

He reiterated Chipotle’s values, mentioning extra meat costs more. “Our goal is to give people great experiences,” he said. “Now if you want double the amount of meat, you’ve got to pay for it. But our goal is to get people really excited about what I believe is really delicious food.”

The viral video’s comments section was filled with mockery. “‘Give our employees a disappointed shrug, then they will give you more’ - Chipotle CEO,” one user quipped. “Can’t wait to see the ‘head nod’ Chipotle videos!” another added. A third wrote: “I’m saving this and taking it to Chipotle.”

Other viewers disagreed with Niccol, claiming portions have shrunk. “Chipotle portions got smaller, especially if ordered online and it doesn’t taste as good,” one said. Another joked about Niccol, “I don’t think he has been to a Chipotle as a regular customer.”

This isn’t the first time Chipotle has addressed portion complaints. Last month, Laurie Schalow, chief corporate affairs and food safety officer, told People there’s been no change in portion sizes. She noted customers can always ask for more or less food.

“Our intentions are to provide a great experience every time, and our meals have always been completely customizable so guests can vocalize or digitally select their desired portions when choosing from the list of real ingredients,” Schalow said.

The debate began in May with a viral TikTok from food critic Keith Lee. He complained about the taste and portion size of his chicken bowl, ordered through the app. “And the amount of chicken there is... there’s only like four pieces of chicken, visually,” he said. He also criticized the flavor, saying: “This just tastes like honey chicken almost, there’s like no spice at all.”

@keith_lee125 Chipotle taste test ???? would you try it ? ????#foodcritic ♬ original sound - Keith Lee