Today I weighed another Chipotle burrito, and in the process I may have had a breakthrough in burrito weight prediction.
This was a chicken burrito with rice, tomato, pinto beans, sour cream, cheese, and lettuce. Compared to my previous two weighed Chipotle burritos this one was a featherweight, weighing in at 554.6g (1.22 lbs).
The breakthrough that I had regarding predicting burrito sizing is this: burrito size at Chipotle shrinks as the number of patrons in the store increases.
Burrito #1: 669.4 grams — Patrons in store: 1
Burrito #2: 588.2 grams — Patrons in store: 6
Burrito #3: 554.6 grams — Patrons in store: 16
I think the explanation for this is that when the store is crowded the workers make the burritos more quickly. They are far more likely to use smaller portions at one or more stations. When the store is slow the burrito is built more deliberately.
The moral of the story: If you’re stalking a large burrito, remember that they don’t like crowds, shoot for an early or late lunch.