Even in the moments leading up to my consumption of Taco Bell’s new waffle taco breakfast item, I was filled with regret.
As someone who limits my fast-food intake almost entirely to Del Taco, I had to do a Yelp search just to find the nearest Taco Bell. And when I found it, my stomach gurgled in shame—I was abandoning my taco loyalty.
Never in my life have I been more thankful for that giant electronic menu keeping my anonymity—and dignity—intact. “I’ll have a sausage waffle taco,” I muttered, letting out an embarrassed laugh, as if to say, “I’m not really ordering a waffle taco. This is a joke, I swear.”
But the woman behind the menu saw right through my car and into my stomach. I had fallen for Taco Bell’s outside-the-box (or is it bun?) marketing and its ingenious breakfast taco design. I wanted to savor the warm waffle cradling a hot, peppery sausage patty and soft, pillowy eggs. Against all rationale, I wanted that waffle taco.
I wonder if Ronald Mc Donald likes his waffle taco cold, too. It took me 20 minutes to get to work, so my options are nuke it in the microwave, or eat it as is. I opt for the latter.
The box is smaller than I’d expected and covered in grease spots. I open it to see a slightly unappetizing, petite waffle boat, staring back at me. It still resembles breakfast, so that’s good.
The delicate crunch from the waffle is quite pleasant—and buttery! Oh, wait … that’s the grease. Still, the first bite is better than expected. The sausage has that microwaveable Brown ‘N’ Serve taste and texture—soft and sort of waxy, peppery and sweet.
It tastes fine, but I cannot get the sound out of my head. Yes, the sound. As my teeth sink into the waffle taco, I can actually hear the grease leaking through the waffle’s nooks and crannies. Squeaky and squishy are not words I want to use to describe my food.
I open the tiny syrup container—smaller than a side of fast-food ranch dressing—and wonder if this is really necessary. I am eating a waffle taco. End argument.
The syrup adds some middle school lunch nostalgia to the mix. French toast sticks, anyone?
A blob of yellow egg stuff covered in orange shredded cheese falls out of the taco and into the box. I eat it, to see if the eggs can stand alone without the Eggo-y accoutrement. Not bad.
Still, the worst part of this experience is that sound. It’s squealing. Maybe it’s trying to tell me something. I imagine my sausage crying out, “Don’t do it!” For a second, I feel queasy.
I’m halfway through the taco and I hardly feel the need to continue. My stomach is slightly disturbed. My mouth and fingers are coated in grease. I can feel the breakouts coming on already. Did I mention this thing is 370 calories?
In the end, it isn’t horrible, and in theory, the waffle taco is a great idea. Which gets me thinking: Like all fast food, this would be better if I made it at home. Now, where’d I put my waffle iron?