Chipotle Testing Automated Burrito Bowl Robot


Chipotle Tests Automated Burrito Bowl Assembly

Chipotle has just announced that they are partnering up with Hyphen and testing out a new Automated Burrito Bowl Assembly Robot to help cut down costs and increase production.

Hyphen, which is a foodservice platform that was designed to help restaurant owners, operators, and young chefs move their business forward into an automation type of kitchen, has created a new assembly robot to help with Chipotle’s needs.

The new robot which is called the “automated digital makeline” helps makes both the burrito bowl as well as the salads.

According to Chipotle, the automated digital makeline robot is actually placed underneath the counter to help create bowls and salads, while the top of the counter is used by an employee to also create burritos, tacos, quesadillas, and kid’s meals.

The idea behind this is that the automated digital makeline robot is to help speed up digital orders while the employee working the top of the counter will help with front customer-facing orders.

Here is basically how the new robot works:

  1. Digital orders would be placed via the Chipotle app,, or third-party platforms.  
  2. If the order included a bowl or salad, those entrées would be routed to Hyphen’s automated system. The bowl traverses along the bottom makeline and positions itself under the specified ingredient container. The intelligent dispensers dynamically portion each ingredient into the bowl. If the order included burritos, tacos, quesadillas, or kid’s meals, a Chipotle team member would use the top of the same makeline to create those entrées.
  3. The completed bowl or salad would be raised from the bottom makeline and revealed at the end of the makeline through an opening in the countertop. A Chipotle team member would place a lid on the entrée and add any final items such as chips, side salsas, or guacamole to the order.
  4. Completed orders would be placed in their designated pick-up area: in-restaurant pickup shelves, walk-up window, or Chipotlane.

According to Chipotle, about 65% of their digital orders are for bowls or salads. Because of this, the automated digital makeline robot can actually help increase a lot of free time for employees to help with other orders and jobs. It will also increase their capacity for digital orders during peak periods as well.

Currently, Chipotle is testing the new automated digital makeline robot in one location only and that is at the Chipotle Cultivate Center in Irvine, California.

Whether this gets brough nationwide, nobody knows, but it certainly is an interesting idea.

Image via Chipotle