Taco Bell Company

Taco Bell employs more than 150,000 team members in nearly 6,000 restaurants across the United States, and has more than 350 franchise organizations that proudly serve more than 36 million customers every week.

Taco Bell is the nation’s leading Mexican-inspired quick service restaurant. Taco Bell serves made to order and customizable tacos, burritos, and specialties such as the exclusive Doritos® Locos Tacos, gourmet inspired Cantina Bell™ Menu and lower calorie Fresco Menu. The company encourages customers to “Live Más,” both through its food and in ways such as its Feed the Beat® music program and nonprofit organization, the Taco Bell Foundation for Teens.

Did you know?

Over 2 billion tacos and 1 billion burritos of all varieties are served in Taco Bell® restaurants each year.

Founding and Growth

Taco Bell was founded by Glen Bell who first opened a hot dog stand called Bell’s Drive-In in San Bernardino, California in 1946 when he was 23 years old. Six years later, he sold the stand and opened a new one two years later, this time selling tacos under the name of Taco-Tia. Over the next few years Bell owned and operated a number of restaurants in southern California including four called El Taco. Bell sold the El Tacos to his partner and built the first Taco Bell in Downey in 1962. In 1962, he sold Taco-Tia. Kermit Becky, a former Los Angeles police officer, bought the first Taco Bell franchise from Glen Bell in 1964, and located it in Torrance. The company grew rapidly, and by 1967, the 100th restaurant opened at 400 South Brookhurst in Anaheim. In 1970, Taco Bell went public with 325 restaurants. In 1978, PepsiCo purchased Taco Bell from Glen Bell.


In 1991, Taco Bell opened the first Taco Bell Express in San Francisco. This concept is a reduced-size restaurant with a limited menu (primarily items priced under $1), meant to emphasize volume. Taco Bell Express locations operate primarily inside convenience stores, truck stops, shopping malls, and airports. Taco Bell began co-branding with KFC in 1995, when the first such co-brand opened in Clayton, North Carolina. The chain has since co-branded with Pizza Hut and Long John Silver's as well. In 1997, PepsiCo experimented with a new "fresh grill" concept, opening at least one Border Bell restaurant in Mountain View, California on El Camino Real (SR 82). In addition to a subset of the regular Taco Bell menu, Border Bell offered Mexican-inspired items like those available from Chevys Fresh Mex restaurants (then owned by PepsiCo), such as Chevys signature sweet corn tamalito pudding and a fresh salsa bar. Close to the time that PepsiCo spun off its restaurant business in 1997, the Border Bell in Mountain View was closed and converted to a Taco Bell restaurant, which is still open as of 2012.


  • What are Taco Bell's food safety standards?

    We take food safety very seriously at Taco Bell®, and are firmly committed to providing the highest level of food safety to our customers, from farm to table. We adhere to strict food safety and handling procedures, and provide intensive training programs for our employees that certify them on health and safety guidelines. We require strict and regular hand-washing with an anti-bacterial soap and hand sanitizing gel. We proactively work with government health officials and our suppliers to continuously improve guidelines and procedures to safeguard the produce supply chain.
  • What ingredients are in your menu items?

    Taco Bell® uses only high quality ingredients. Seasoned Beef: made with 100% premium beef, seasoned with our signature recipe. USDA Select Marinated Grilled Steak. Marinated all-white-meat chicken. Diced, fresh cut tomatoes. Guacamole made from authentic Mexican-grown avocados. Fiesta salsa freshly prepared every day. Nacho chips freshly fried throughout the day.
  • Is my food made to order?

    Yes! Our food is layered, loaded, grilled, melted and topped fresh for you, right when you order it. This means two things. First, you get your food prepared exactly how you want it. And second, it always tastes fresh.
  • I have food intolerances. What menu items can meet my needs?

    None of the Taco Bell® menu items contain the following potential allergens: Sulfites or Sulfiting agents, Nuts or nut extracts (especially peanuts), Undeclared fish, shellfish or seafood, Lard. Many of our recipes include wheat and are not suitable for gluten-restricted diets. For product-specific information about gluten and other allergens, please visit our Food Allergens & Sensitivities page. Or, refer to our detailed Ingredient Statement.
  • Are there any items on your menu that are prepared without meat?

    Several Taco Bell® items do not include meat as an ingredient. Popular ones include the classic Bean Burrito, 1/2 lb. Cheesy Bean & Rice Burrito, 7-Layer Burrito, and Cheesy Fiesta Potatoes side item (the last two feature sour cream, which contains a very small amount of gelatin which is naturally animal-based). Of course you can also request that any item on the menu be prepared without meat or sour cream. The enzymes used in the production of our cheese, tortillas, and flatbread are not from an animal source.
  • Where can I find the nutritional content of your menu itmes?

    Nutritional information for all of our great tasting items can be viewed from our Nutrition Information page.
  • Does Taco Bell offer any lower-fat options?

    The basic ingredients in Taco Bell®'s Mexican-inspired food are wholesome, with enriched rice, crisp lettuce, and fresh tomatoes. Most items on our menu can be ordered as a lower-fat alternative by specifying you would like it prepared "Fresco Style." This means that this would be mayo based sauces, guacamole, reduced-fat sour cream and cheese are substituted with pico de gallo, a blend of tomatoes, diced white onions, and cilantro freshly prepared daily. Learn more about this option.
  • Other than Taco Bell where can I buy Mountain Dew Baja Blast?

    Mountain Dew BAJA BLAST® is only available at Taco Bell® (participating locations) because it was made specially to go with our great tasting food.
  • What are your typical hour of operation?

    Taco Bell® restaurant hours vary by location. However, most of our restaurants are open by 11:00 am and stay open until 1 a.m. or later.