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Indian American Krish Jagirdar’s Online Petition Helps Bring Back Taco Bell’s Mexican Pizza

Indian American Krish Jagirdar’s Online Petition Helps Bring Back Taco Bell’s Mexican Pizza

  • The item, which will return to the menu on May 19, is popular with the South Asian American community, especially vegetarians, because of its ability to customize.

Taco Bell is bringing back its Mexican Pizza next month, thanks to an Indian American superfan, Krish Jagirdar. Growing up, the New York-based Jagirdar, who was raised vegetarian, gravitated to the Mexican Pizza again and again. So when the fast-food chain pulled out the item in September 2020, he started an online petition to bring back the popular item. He later got support from celebrities like singer Doja Cat and like Dolly Parton. When Taco Bell announced the return of the Mexican Pizza on April 18, Jagirdar’s petition had more than 200,000 signatures.

In the petition, Jagirdar noted how the Mexican Pizza is loved by many, especially the South Asian community. “Losing this item would not only be the loss of one of our favorite foods but a piece of our childhood & heritage as Indian Americans,” he wrote. He told Thrillist that if he’s feeling down or sad, it was a Mexican Pizza that would make him feel better. “It was definitely more than just sustenance and eating. It was something that’s tied to so many different emotions for me.”

Jagirdar also shared links to four articles explaining the significance of Taco Bell for South Asian Americans including an article by Rima Parikh for The Takeout. “The perfect Taco Bell menu item is the Mexican Pizza, sub the meat for beans, add potatoes, Fritos, and nacho cheese sauce,” Parikh wrote. 

In a similar article in FoodBeast, Viral Dave wrote: “Taco Bell is a staple in the Indian American community. We Desis – people of South Asian descent – are spread all over the U.S., building lives and exploring our distinct identities and interests throughout states like New Jersey, Virginia, Texas, and California. We have different tastes in music, unique relationships with the motherland, and varied levels of interest in Bollywood and the Priyanka Chopra-Nick Jonas relationship. But what connects us even more to our roots is our love for Taco Bell.”

Taco Bell noted in a press release that vegetarian fans “have been among the most vocal and hopeful for the Mexican Pizzas return,” as Taco Bell has been “a haven” for them, “thanks to the ability to customize.” It is made up of two crispy flour shells, layered with beans, pizza sauce, seasoned beef, tomatoes and a melted three-cheese blend, and is available vegetarian without the seasoned beef.

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Although Jagirdar would swap out meat for beans, it wasn’t just vegetarian options that drew his family to the fast-food chain. The flavors and emphasis on spice appealed to Indian Americans because they’re similar to food at home,” he says in the company press release. As a vegetarian, he recalls how he “had limited access to the ‘fun’ fast food, so Taco Bell became a bridge to belonging in American culture for many kids like me who grew up in immigrant households,” said Jagirdar, in a Taco Bell press release.

On May 19, Jagirdar told Thrillist that he plans on celebrating the return of the Mexican Pizza with his friends in New York City when it becomes available on May 19. He’ll head to a bar for a few drinks before going to Taco Bell to finally order his go-to, mood-lifting, absolute favorite menu item.

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