High protein Taco Bell items surrounded in sauce packets on a red gradient background.

12 High-Protein Taco Bell Orders to Help You Hit Your Macro Goals

Satisfy your cravings and protein needs.

While we’d never advocate for Taco Bell as your main source of protein, sometimes the heart wants what it wants. We scoured Taco Bell’s nutrition info to hunt down orders that deliver 20-plus grams of protein. Here’s the best high-protein Taco Bell options to order next time you find yourself in the drive-thru. 

Don’t have time to skim the full list? Here are our top picks:

  • Highest Protein Taco Bell Item: Cantina Chicken Quesadilla (29g protein)
  • Healthiest High-Protein Taco Bell Item: Cantina Chicken Bowl (25g protein)
  • Cheapest High-Protein Taco Bell Item: 3-Cheese Chicken Flatbread (20g protein, $2.49)  

About the Expert

Ana Reisdorf, M.S., R.D., is a registered dietitian and founder of The Food Trends.

Is Taco Bell a Good Source of Protein?

Taco Bell isn’t your best high-protein fast food option, but the menu does feature more than a dozen items containing 20 grams of protein or more—the amount registered dietitian Ana Reisdorf, M.S., R.D. suggests getting in a meal. 

“This amount supports muscle repair, helps increase satiety, and can help you maintain a healthy body weight,” she explains. If you’re looking to maximize muscle growth, aim a bit higher—20 to 40 grams per meal, according to the International Society of Sports Nutrition (1).

Best High-Protein Taco Bell Items

Ranked from least to most protein, here are the Taco Bell menu items with 20 grams of protein or more.

Cheesy Gordita Crunch

Cheesy Gordita Crunch (20g protein)

Of the entire taco menu—including Value Tacos, Chalupas, Double Decker Tacos, and Taco Supremes—the Gorditas are the only option that pack 20 grams of protein in a single taco. The Cheesy Gordita Crunch and the Doritos Cheesy Gordita Crunch both contain 20 grams of protein per serving, but stick to the classic Cheesy option. It’s no surprise, but the Doritos version is higher in calories (500) and sodium (890mg).

Calories: 490
Protein: 20g
Carbs: 41g (5g fiber, 1g added sugar)
Fats: 28g (11g saturated fat)
Sodium: 840mg

3 Cheese Chicken Flat Bread

3 Cheese Chicken Flatbread (20g protein)

Twenty grams of protein for $2.29? Yes, please. This soft flatbread is loaded with grilled chicken, cheese, and Chipotle Sauce. 

Calories: 330
Protein: 20g
Carbs: 29g (2g fiber, <1g added sugar)
Fats: 15g (6g saturated fat)
Sodium: 760mg

Cheesy Double Beef Burrito

Cheesy Double Beef Burrito (21g protein)

This value-menu staple has been known by many names over the years—most recently the Beefy Melt Burrito. But trust, it’s still the same beefy cheesy goodness you’ve come to know and love, at the fair price of $2.79. This classic contains 21 grams of protein a pop. 

Calories: 570
Protein: 21g
Carbs: 63g (7g fiber, 2g added sugar)
Fats: 26g (10g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,330mg

Breakfast California Crunchwrap With Bacon

Breakfast California Crunchwrap With Bacon (21g protein)

Taco Bell’s beloved Crunchwrap also exists in breakfast form. It clocks in at 21 grams of protein if you order it with sausage or bacon, or 24 grams with steak.

Of all the Breakfast Crunchwraps, the California Crunchwrap is the healthiest of the bunch (by a smidge). It contains the least calories, fat, and saturated fat—along with the addition of guacamole and tomatoes for a punch of healthy fats and fiber.

Calories: 640
Protein: 21g
Carbs: 53g (5g fiber, 2g added sugar)
Fats: 38g (12g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,330mg

Black Bean Grilled Cheese Burrito

Black Bean Grilled Cheese Burrito (23g protein)

Taco Bell has quite a few options for plant-based eaters, but few hit the mark on protein. This burrito is the exception, with 23 grams per serving.

Calories: 700
Protein: 23g
Carbs: 69g (8g fiber, 2g added sugar)
Fats: 37g (15g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,390mg

Cantina Chicken Soft Taco

Two Cantina Chicken Soft Tacos (24g protein)

The new Cantina Chicken Soft Tacos offer the most protein for any of the regular soft tacos on the menu. Two tacos get you 24 grams of protein. They’re also a bit healthier than the Crispy Cantina Tacos (less fat and calories) probably due to its crispy shell being fried. However, the crispy tacos pack a little more protein at 16 grams of protein each, and 32 grams for two.

Calories: 420
Protein: 24g
Carbs: 19g (3g fiber, <1g added sugar)
Fats: 20g (7g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,040mg

Cantina Chicken Burrito

Cantina Chicken Burrito (25g protein)

The Cantina Chicken Burrito contains 25 grams of protein, and features lighter ingredients like lettuce, cabbage, and pico over T-Bell’s usual nacho cheese/sour cream mash-up. Still, they sneak in the Avocado Ranch and Chipotle Sauce which drives up the calories, fat, and sodium of this handheld meal.

Calories: 540
Protein: 25g
Carbs: 43g (6g fiber, 2g added sugar)
Fats: 30g (9g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,170mg

Cantina Chicken Bowl

Cantina Chicken Bowl (25g protein)

Taco Bell’s Chicken Cantina Bowl is the healthiest, high-protein option on the menu, according to Reisdorf. Each bowl packs grilled chicken, seasoned rice, black beans, lettuce, tomato, reduced-fat sour cream, guacamole, and Avocado Ranch. As is, the bowl contains 25 grams of protein, but add extra Slow-Roasted Chicken (for $1.25) for a protein fiesta.

Calories: 490
Protein: 25g
Carbs: 44g (11g fiber, 0g added sugar)
Fats: 24g (7g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,150mg

Bacon Breakfast Quesadilla

Bacon Breakfast Quesadilla (25g protein)

Taco Bell’s breakfast quesadillas—which all contain over 20 grams of protein—aren’t the worst way to start your day. That said, whether you choose sausage, bacon, or steak they’re loaded with sodium. The Bacon strikes right in the middle of both protein and sodium at 25 grams of protein and 1,260mg of sodium.

Calories: 520
Protein: 25g
Carbs: 40g (3g fiber, 2g added sugar)
Fats: 27g (14g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,260mg

Steak Quesadilla

Steak Quesadilla (26g protein)

Nothing hits better than a classic cheese quesadilla. You can enjoy one knowing you’ll get 18 grams of protein, or add steak or chicken to bring the protein up to 26 grams. 

Calories: 520
Protein: 26g
Carbs: 42g (3g fiber, 2g added sugar)
Fats: 27g (14g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,270mg

Grande Toasted Breakfast Burrito With Steak

Grande Toasted Breakfast Burrito With Steak (27g protein)

Of the breakfast burritos on the menu, the Grande Toasted burritos have the most protein. The steak (27g of protein), bacon (23 g), and sausage (21g) options will all get you over 20 grams of protein. The steak (24g) and bacon (20g) Hash Brown Burritos aren’t too shabby on protein either.

Calories: 570
Protein: 27g
Carbs: 52g (4g fiber, 2g added sugar)
Fats: 28g (10g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,370mg

Cantina Chicken Quesadilla

Cantina Chicken Quesadilla (29g protein)

The highest protein Taco Bell menu item is the Cantina Chicken Quesadilla, with 29 grams per serving. Add extra or double Slow-Roasted Chicken (for a small fee) to get even more protein. 

Calories: 570
Protein: 29g
Carbs: 43g (4g fiber, 1g added sugar)
Fats: 32g (16g saturated fat)
Sodium: 1,330mg

High-Protein Taco Bell Items, Ranked

High-Protein Taco Bell Items, Ranked

Are High-Protein Taco Bell Options Healthy?

Taco Bell has made efforts to make their menu healthier: Since 2008, the brand has cut back on sodium, stopped using artificial colors and flavors, sourced 100 percent cage-free eggs and antibiotic-free chicken, and cut down on sugary drinks. Still, many menu items are high in sodium, fat, and saturated fat. They can also run high in carbs.

For example, the Breakfast Crunchwrap with Sausage has 21 grams of protein; but, it’s also relatively high in fat (49 grams of total fat, 17 grams of saturated fat), and isn’t exactly low-carb at 53 grams of carbs. It also contains a staggering 1,210mg of sodium.

Make Your High-Protein Pick Even Healthier

These pro tips can instantly upgrade the nutrition and protein profile of your order.

Customize your meal

One of Taco Bell’s best kept secrets is that its menu is completely customizable. Want more protein? Just ask. In the app, “extra” will get you 1.5 times the protein, or you can add an additional serving for double protein.

Make it “fresco style”

All that means is substituting fresh pico de gallo in place of cheese, sour cream, mayo-based sauces, and guac. This swap cuts down the fat of any meal significantly.

“Go easy” on creamy sauces

If you simply can’t resist a creamy sauce, “go easy” on the Chipotle Sauce (or any sauce for that matter). This modification can trim up to 50 calories from your meal. significantly.

Look for fiber

“Fiber supports digestive health, helps regulate blood sugar levels, and contributes to satiety,” says Reisdorf. As a whole the Taco Bell menu is fairly low in fiber, but she points out menu items that include vegetables or beans tend to have more. 

Minimize fat

Fat at Taco Bell often comes in the form of refined oils, cheese, sour cream, and sauces. Reisdorf recommends opting for healthier sources like avocado.

Watch the sodium

Reisdorf notes sodium is probably the most challenging mark to hit when it comes to ordering at Taco Bell since it’s the star of some of the most popular items. In fact, 10 of the 12 high-protein menu items we’ve listed above contain more than 1,000mg of sodium per serving—that’s 75 percent of your daily limit (2).