What To Eat At Chipotle When Bulking or Cutting (6 Meals)

Eating at Chipotle is a quick food option for people who work out but it’s important to know what specifically you should be eating to reach your goal – whether that’s cutting or bulking. 

So what should you eat at Chipotle if you work out? If you are losing weight, a salad with protein, cauliflower rice and cheese will provide a high protein and moderate to high-fat meal. If you are bulking, a burrito bowl with double protein and light cheese will provide a high protein and carb but moderate fat meal.

In this article, I will provide:

  • 3 meal options for what to eat at Chipotle to lose weight
  • 3 meal options for what to eat at Chipotle when bulking 
  • My top 4 tips for eating at Chipotle both before and after your workout

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Eating at Chipotle When Cutting: 3 Meal Options  

Three meal options to order at Chipotle to lose weight are:

 1. 400 Calorie Chipotle Meal Plan 

400 calorie weight loss chipotle meal plan
  • Order a salad with steak
  • Add cilantro-lime cauliflower rice
  • Add fajitas vegetables and fresh tomato salsa
  • Add monterey jack cheese
  • Add either tomatillo-red or tomatillo-green chili salsa

This meal has 363 calories, 32g protein (35%), 25g carbohydrates (28%), 9g fibre and 15g fat (37%).

By ordering a salad with cauliflower rice instead of regular rice, you are saving yourself 170 calories and 33g of carbohydrates. Carbs are a quicker source of energy meaning you won’t find the rice filling as long after you eat. By opting for the salad, it’s an easy way to reduce the total calories without feeling hungry later. 

Adding steak and monterey jack cheese to your meal will add a full serving of protein and fat. Both have a similar effect where you feel full and satisfied for a longer period of time after you eat. This is quite helpful when you are eating less calories so important to include in your meals. 

Customizations to this meal, that can future reduce the calories include:

  • Order without monterey jack cheese, this will reduce your meal by 110 calories and 8g of fat. 

If you are eating this meal before or after a workout, removing the cheese is recommended. This is an easy way to reduce the fat in your meal, giving you more energy throughout your workout. 

To further customize the meal for eating around your workout, order half rice and half cauliflower rice to boost the carbs in your meal. This will give you lots of energy to keep you going throughout your workout.

2. 600 Calorie Chipotle Meal Plan

600 calorie weight loss chipotle meal plan
  • Order a Salad with a double order of steak
  • Add cilantro-lime cauliflower rice
  • Add fajitas vegetables and roasted chili corn salsa
  • Add monterey jack cheese
  • Add either tomatillo-red or tomatillo-green chili salsa

This meal has 583 calories, 56g protein (38%), 38g carbohydrates (26%), 12g fibre and 23g fat (36%).

Adding a double order of steak increases the meal’s protein by 21g. Protein provides a feeling of being full and satiated for a few hours after you eat. By ensuring your meal has lots of protein, this can help make the lower calories eaten during weight loss, much more comfortable. 

Customizations to this meal, that can further reduce the calories include: 

  • Order without monterey jack cheese, this will reduce your meal by 110 calories and 8g of fat. 
  • Order without roasted chili corn salsa, this will reduce your meal by 80 calories and 16g of carbohydrates. 

If you are planning to eat this meal either before or after a workout, ordering without the cheese is recommended to reduce the fat and provide you with the most energy during your gym session. 

To further customize your meal for pre and post workout, order this meal with half rice and half cauliflower rice and keep the corn included. This will provide the carbs that you need to keep you feeling energized throughout your workout. 

3. 800 Calorie Chipotle Meal Plan 

800 calorie weight loss chipotle meal plan
  • Order a salad with an order of steak and an order of barbacoa
  • Add cilantro-lime cauliflower rice and black beans
  • Add fajitas vegetables and fresh tomato salsa
  • Add extra monterey jack cheese
  • Add either tomatillo-red or tomatillo-green chili salsa

This meal has 768 calories, 70g protein (36%), 50g carbohydrates (26%), 17g fibre and 32g fat (38%).

Adding extra monterey jack cheese to your order will boost both the fat and the protein in your meal. Both macronutrients provide you with that full and satisfied feeling, which is something we want to take advantage of as our calories decrease. 

Adding black beans to your order will add high fibre carbohydrates. SImilar to fat and protein, fibre helps to keep that full feeling for a longer period of time after eating. Again, we want to be using this to our advantage when reducing our calories as it will make the experience more comfortable and easier to stick with long term. 

Customizations to this meal, that can further reduce the calories include: 

  • Order without black beans, this will reduce your meal by 130 calories and 22g of carbohydrates. 
  • Order without extra monterey jack cheese, this will reduce your meal by 220 calories and 16g of fat. 

If you are going to eat this meal around your workout, I recommend making both substitutions. Both fibre and fat want to be minimal around your workout, otherwise you will likely find you feel quite full and less energized. 

I would also recommend opting for half cauliflower rice and half regular rice. This will help to increase the carbs in your meal, providing you with the boost of energy you need to have a hard session in the gym. 

Eating at Chipotle When Bulking: 3 Meal Options

Three meal options to order at Chipotle when bulking are:

1. 700 Calorie Chipotle Meal Plan 

700 calorie bulking chipotle meal plan
  • Order a burrito bowl with a double order of steak
  • Add cilantro-lime brown rice 
  • Add fajitas vegetables and roasted chili corn salsa
  • Add romaine lettuce
  • Add light monterey jack cheese
  • Add either tomatillo-red or tomatillo-green chili salsa

This meal has 688 calories, 53g protein (31%), 65g carbohydrates (38%), 10g fibre and 24g fat (31%).

A burrito bowl provides a relatively even mix of carbs, protein and fat. When bulking, this is helpful to ensure we are getting enough protein and calories to build muscle without feeling too physically full. 

Including a double serving of meat in your burrito bowl will increase the protein by 21g. This is important when bulking to give your body the protein it needs to build muscle mass and strength. 

Customizations to this meal that can further increase the calories include:

  • To increase the fat, cheese, guacamole, sour cream and queso can all be added. Guacamole provides the most bang for your buck with 230 calories and 22g of fat in a serving. 
  • To increase the carbohydrates, extra rice can add 210 calories and 40g of carbs or beans can increase the calories by 130 and 22g of carbs. 

If you are planning to eat this meal either before or after your workout, adding extra fat or beans is not recommended. This will leave you feeling full and generally less energized. Instead, opt for just the extra rice so you are feeling fueled for your workout. 

2. 1000 Calorie Chipotle Meal Plan

1000 calorie bulking chipotle meal plan
  • Order a burrito bowl with a double order of chicken
  • Add extra cilantro-lime brown rice 
  • Add fajitas vegetables and roasted chili corn salsa
  • Add romaine lettuce
  • Add light monterey jack cheese
  • Add either tomatillo-red or tomatillo-green chili salsa

This meal has 1,000 calories, 79g protein (32%), 99g carbohydrates (39%), 10g fibre and 32g fat (29%).

At Chipotle, chicken is the highest protein meat option. By ordering a double serving of chicken in your meal will increase the protein by 30g. When bulking, this is important to ensure your body has the protein it needs to build strength and muscle. 

Including extra brown rice will boost the calories in your meal, primarily from carbohydrates. Since this bowl is already high in protein and contains a healthy amount of fats, carbohydrates are the best way to increase calories without feeling too full after you eat. 

Customizations to this meal that can further increase the calories include:

  • To increase the fat, cheese, guacamole, sour cream and queso can all be added. Guacamole is the highest calorie option at 230 calories and 22g of fat per serving. 
  • To increase the carbohydrates, beans can be added to increase the calories by 130 and 22g of carbs. 

These customizations increase the calories primarily from fat and higher fibre carbohydrates. Both of these tend to leave you feeling quite full and satiated many hours after consumption. If this is something you commonly experience, this may be a good meal option for later in the day when feeling full is not preventing you from eating any additional calories. 

Both fat and fibre should be kept low around your workout so these customizations are best for meals that aren’t immediately before or after your workout. 

3. 1,300 Calorie Chipotle Meal Plan

1300 calorie bulking chipotle meal plan
  • Order a burrito with a double order of chicken
  • Add light cilantro-lime brown rice and black beans
  • Add fajitas vegetables and roasted chili corn salsa
  • Add romaine lettuce
  • Add monterey jack cheese and sour cream
  • Add either tomatillo-red or tomatillo-green chili salsa

This meal has 1,266 calories, 94g protein (30%), 119g carbohydrates (38%), 17g fibre and 46g fat (32%).

At Chipotle, the easiest way to increase calories in a meal is to order a burrito as the shell alone contains 320 calories and 50g of carbs. Given that the shell is primarily carbs, and carbs are quicker to digest, this can help you consume higher calories when bulking without feeling uncomfortably satisfied. 

Customizations to this meal that can further increase the calories include:

  • To increase the fat, cheese, guacamole, queso, extra cheese or extra sour cream can be added. Guacamole provides the biggest punch at 230 calories and 22g of fat per serving.

If you are eating this as a pre-workout meal, I recommend considering the 700 or 1,000 calorie meal options instead. Consuming something this high in calories around a workout will likely leave you feeling too digestively full and uncomfortable resulting in a less effective workout. 

Tips for Eating at Chipotle Before A Workout 

tips for eating at chipotle before a workout

For anyone looking to optimize their performance in the gym, what you are eating pre-workout is a key factor in ensuring you have sufficient energy throughout your workout.

Should you eat at Chipotle before a workout? 

Yes, you should eat at Chipotle before a workout. A burrito bowl with double protein, no beans and light cheese, guacamole or sour cream is a high carb, moderate protein and low-fat meal ideal pre-workout. Add an extra serving of rice if you need more calories.

4 Tips for How to Eat at Chipotle Before a Workout

My top 4 tips for how to eat at Chipotle before a workout are:

1. Order white rice or a tortilla shell with your meal

Pre-workout, it is important to consume food that is high in carbs as it will provide a quick source of energy to fuel your workout. If you are feeling energized, you’ll be able to push harder in your workouts. 

You want to ensure you are consuming at least two servings of carbs. A serving size is approximately the size of a closed fist. At Chipotle, the best options are white rice and tortilla shells. 

I recommend eating this meal, 1-2 hours prior to your workout. 

2. Do not order beans with your meal

We want to limit the fibre that we are eating before a workout. Fibre will slow down our digestion so it will be more difficult for our body to use the carbs we just consumed for energy. You’re likely to feel more sluggish and bloated during your workout instead of the energized state we want you in. 

At Chipotle, beans are high in fibre with 9g per serving meaning it’s best to skip these for any pre-workout meal.

3. Order steak as your protein source

We want to limit the amount of fat that we are eating in advance of our workout. Fat, similar to fibre, slows down our digestion so your body will not be able to utilize the carbs you ate for quick energy. You’ll likely find you aren’t feeling as energized as you need to in order to get through a big workout.

Steak is the leanest protein source at Chipotle, making it the best option to eat pre-workout.

4. Order a light serving of guacamole, sour cream or cheese

Guacamole, sour cream and cheese are high in fat, something we want to limit pre-workout. Instead, we want to focus on getting our energy from carbs so we are feeling energized and peppy throughout our training session. 

When choosing these toppings, limit it to only one and ensure you order a ‘light’ serving.

Related Article: 12 Best Low Sodium Chipotle Meals

Tips for Eating at Chipotle After A Workout 

What you are eating post-workout is important to replenish your muscle’s glycogen stores and improve protein synthesis to ensure sufficient recovery so you are ready for your next workout. 

Should you eat at Chipotle after a workout? 

Yes, you should eat at Chipotle after a workout. A burrito bowl with double protein, no beans and light cheese, sour cream or guacamole is a high carb and protein and low-fat meal ideal for post workout. Add an extra serving of rice if you need more calories.

4 Tips for How to Eat at Chipotle After a Workout

My top 4 tips for how to eat at Chipotle after a workout are:

1. Order rice with your meal

Throughout your workout, you will use most of the fuel your body has stored. When we replenish these stores immediately after our workout, we are able to kick start the process of repairing our muscles. This process of damaging our muscles during our workout then repairing post-workout is what will lead to muscular and strength growth.

The best way to replenish and begin the repair process is by eating a high carb meal after your training. I recommend eating it within 1 to 1.5 hours post-workout. You want to ensure this meal has at least two servings of carbs, with a serving size being about the size of a closed fist. 

At Chipotle, the best option is to order a burrito bowl with rice. Chipotle offers the ability to order an extra serving of rice with any meal, which may be a good option if you are looking for extra calories. 

2. Order a double serving of meat

Protein is the other macronutrient that our body needs after a workout. Protein is what our body will be using to do the repairing of damaged muscle, so if we don’t have enough that muscle breakdown will simply continue. 

To ensure you have sufficient protein, when eating at Chipotle, order a double serving of meat. 

3. Do not order beans with your meal

Fibre slows down our digestion, which means it will take longer for our body to absorb the carbs and protein we just ate. To make sure we are prioritizing repairing our muscles, we want those carbs and protein to be digested and used as soon as possible. Limiting fibre in our post-workout meal will make sure this isn’t delayed.

Beans are high in fibre with 9g per serving, therefore it is recommended to exclude these from your post-workout order. 

4. Order a light serving of guacamole, sour cream or cheese

Guacamole, sour cream and cheese are all high fat, which we are looking to limit post-workout. Fat slows down our digestion which will get in the way of our body using carbs and fat to begin the process of muscular repair. Since that process is so key to growing our muscles and strength, we don’t want anything slowing it down.

Including only a ‘light’ serving of one of these fat sources will help to keep the total fat of your meal low.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some frequently asked questions for eating at Chipotle if you work out:

Can I Eat at Chipotle and Still Lose Weight?

Yes, you can eat at Chipotle and still lose weight. To lose weight you need to be eating less calories compared to what you burn. Chipotle’s menu has low calorie options, such as a salad with a protein, vegetables and fresh salsa, that make it possible to maintain a caloric deficit.

Can I Eat at Chipotle and Gain Muscle?

Yes, you can eat at Chipotle and gain muscle. To gain muscle, you need to consume sufficient protein for your muscles to repair and adapt after working out. Chipotle’s menu allows you to order a double serving of meat with any meal which will provide you with a sufficient amount of protein

What Meal at Chipotle Has the Most Protein?

The meal at Chipotle that has the most protein is a burrito with a double order of chicken, cilantro-lime brown rice, extra black beans, extra cheese, sour cream and roasted chili-corn salsa. This meal has 1,560 calories with 109g of protein, 154g of carbohydrates and 57g of fat.

What Meal at Chipotle Has the Most Calories?

The meal at Chipotle that has the most calories is a burrito with a double order of carnitas, extra cilantro-lime brown rice, extra black beans, guacamole, extra cheese, extra sour cream and roasted chili-corn salsa. This meal has 2,040 calories with 91g of protein, 174g of carbohydrates and 104g of fat.

Which Meal at Chipotle Has the Least Calories?

The meal at Chipotle that has the least calories is a salad with steak, fajita vegetables, fresh tomato salsa and tomatillo green chili salsa. This meal has 200 calories with 23g of protein, 13g of carbohydrates and 6g of fat.

Let’s get you in the best shape of your life. Sounds good?

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About The Author

Laura Semotiuk

Laura Semotiuk is a Precision Nutrition Level 1 certified nutrition coach. She works with athletes and active individuals looking to improve performance and develop healthy nutritional habits and behaviors. She has a passion for cooking, meal prepping, and creating simple and healthy recipes.