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Zambrero stands alongside Mad Max and Guzman y Gomez as one of the main Mexican chain restaurants in Australia. Like its rivals it lets you pick your type of dish – burrito, bowl, quesadilla etc – and add your own selection of fillings – but, within this remit, what are the lowest calorie options in Zambrero that you can pick? Our guide to Zambrero calories reveals all…
Updated in April 2023 with the latest Zambrero Nutritional Information
Before we get onto that though, let’s talk about why you might pick Zambrero to eat at in the first place as it’s kind of an interesting story.
Is Zambrero Healthy?
The chain’s motto is Feel Good Mex – and, the fact that they were started by a medical student, Dr Sam Prince (check out his full story here), looking for healthy Mexican means it’s a given that they’re going to do their best to try and serve food that’s good for you.
But their name is not just a comment on the health of their food, it also reflects the fact that Zambrero do a lot of good for charity.
In fact, their Plate 4 Plate initiative means that when you buy a meal, their partner Rise Against Hunger donates a meal to someone somewhere else in the world that needs it – which means whatever you eat does someone else good.
But, if you want to do yourself good as well, here’s what to order.
The Lowest Calorie Dish in Zambrero
Is the Vegetarian Quesadilla without extra sauce – which comes in at 168 calories (704kj) per serving.
If you want extra sauce, then your best choice is Trezigo sauce which adds 12-24 calories depending on the size of the meal it’s added to.
The fact that the Vegetarian Quesadilla is lowest was a bit of a shocker because a) it’s basically melted cheese in carbs – but in most other variation of meal the Cauliflower version is the lowest option and the Veggie option is the highest! But not the Quesadilla.
The reason when you look into things is clear – many of the other veggie versions combine the yumminess of beans, rice and guacamole as a filling – which of course, adds more calories than pure veggies will.
What’s Trezigo Sauce?
Yes, I asked that too.
It’s a sauce flavoured with garlic, coriander and lime – but it also contains spirulina which is an interesting addition as I find spirulina adds a really earthy taste to everything but it seems to work in this.
Sadly the sauce isn’t any good for those who like their Mexican food firey as it has no chillis in it. The good news is though that the Red Chilli sauce isn’t far behind in the low calorie stakes at between 14-28 calories.
The highest calorie sauce in Zambrero, is, not surprisingly, the Basilo a mayonnaise that also contains pine nuts.
Adding that to your dish will add 51-102 calories – and a whopping 255 if you have it dolloped on the chips or chips and guac! You could have an entire extra quesadilla or taco for that!
It’s surprising how much difference the sauce you pick can make to your Zambrero calories so I see why they list the calories without that to start with. Pick carefully…
The other factors that determine the calories in Zambrero meal are the format you choose and the filling you pick. So, let’s get specific on the best choices for those …
If you’re a Mexican food fan, you might also want to have a look at our guides to the calories in Guzman y Gomez .
We’ve also covered the yumminess of Mad Mex – and were amazing to find out how few calories were in our favourite dish! See more about that here.
Tacos and Quesadillas
If you really want to keep calories low, this is the section of the menu to pick from.
Their relatively small size, plus the fact that they don’t contain rice, beans or guacamole makes them naturally lower in calories and no matter which option you pick you won’t consume more than 309 calories (1292kj) – that’s in the Barbacoa Beef Dos Capas (without sauce) which combines both a hard and soft taco, your choice of filling and a smidge of cheese and sour cream.
As I said, the Vegetarian Quesadilla is absolutely the lowest calorie option to pick, but the Cauliflower Hard Taco has just 185 calories (773kj) and the Chicken and Pork ones aren’t too much higher at 212 calories each (885kj)
Calories in Zambrero Bowls
If you have a bigger appetite, the bowls offer the lowest calorie for their portion size on the Zambrero menu.
If you’re looking for absolutely the lowest calorie bowl in Zambrero, the Cauliflower Power Bowl is it at 287 calories (1199kj).
Zambrero do three types of bowl
The Classic Bowls come with a choice of Jasmine Rice or black rice, black beans or pinto beans, and sour cream, salsa, cheese and lettuce.
They are generally, the mid range calorie bowl option to choose and, other than the Vegetarian one, they all contain fewer than 500 calories (2100kj). Again, the Cauliflower Classic bowl is the lowest calorie option and it has just 397 calories (1657kj)
The Bowl IQ swaps jasmine rice for black rice and pinto beans, with some gauc – it cuts out cheese and sour cream (although you can add them as extras), that’s why the IQ Bowl contain just 14 calories (58kj) more than a classic bowl with the same toppings – but, it will be more filling as it contains lower GI carbs and more fat, the combination of which promotes satiety so, it could be a calorie sacrifice worth making.
The Power Bowl is the lowest calorie option. It leaves out the guac (although again you can add it as an extra) and packs in extra fibre by using more veggies in the base.
To give you an idea of what this means, in the case of the Chicken or Pork version we’re talking 77 calories fewer than a Classic bowl with the same toppings (and a total calorie count of 387 (1616kj) each), and around 100 calories less than is in the Bowl IQ.
Zambrero Burritos Calories
There’s two sizes of Burrito at Zambrero and not surprisingly, ordering the Classic Small Burrito is the lowest calorie choice.
However, these have gone up in calories since I first wrote this. Originally, all of these – except the vegetarian burrito – contained 500 calories or less. Now only the cauliflower one does. It has 488 calories (2046kj) .
But how much extra damage is there from ordering a larger size?
You’re looking at around 230 calories (966kj) more ordering a normal sized, Classic Burrito with meat, 196 calories (823kj) more on the Cauliflower option.
Like the bowls, the IQ Burrito used to be 100 (420kj) per serving more than a large classic Burrito – but that’s shrunk down to 16 calories. Again, it doesn’t include the cheese and sour cream as standard fillings.
When this was first written there was only a small increase in calories between a Power Burrito and a Classic one, but, with the menu revamp, the Power Burritos have now fallen considerably in calories so they are lower than the Classic Burrito. You can now save around 60-75 calories by swapping to a Power Burrito.
Why Are Veggie Burritos So High?
The Vegetarian burritos are the highest calorie burritos at Zambrero. Which you might not expect as, vegetables are usually low calorie!
However, the Vegetarian Burritos use higher quantities of beans, guac and rice than the other burritos which is why they stack up the calories.
How bad is it – erm. the Vegetarian Classic Burrito has a whopping 863 calories (3606kj).
This doesn’t mean you can’t eat a Burrito at Zambrero if you don’t eat meat – just pick the Cauliflower Power Burrito at 574 calories (2392kj) instead.
From what I can work out, burrito calories do not contain additional extras like sour cream or cheese. If you add those it’s obviously going to add more.
Calories in Nachos, Chips and Dip
A serving of Naked Chips is 256 calories (1070kj) – add guacamole and that goes up to 345 calories (1443kj) – personally, I’d take the extra calories and walk for 20 minutes later in the day! I love guacamole!
It’s probably not going to surprise anyone to discover that nachos, with their delicious topping trifecta of cheese, sour cream and guacamole, are not diet food!
Again, cauliflower is your lowest choice at 729 calories (3048kj). The Barbacoa Beef option is the highest at 847 calories (3541kj) – the others all hover between 810-839 calories (3238-3606kj), give or take a handful.
What’s 500 Calories or Less in Zambrero?
Here are your choices in order from lowest to highest…
200 Calories or Less
Vegetarian Quesadilla – 168 calories (697kj)
Cauliflower Hard Taco – 185 calories (748kj)
Cauliflower Quesadilla – 194 calories (796kj)
Cauliflower Soft Taco – 195 calories (817kj)
300 Calories or Less
Vegetarian Hard Taco – 201 calories (839kj)
Chicken or Pork Hard Taco – 212 calories (887kj)
Lamb Hard Taco – 222 calories (926kj)
Vegetarian Soft Taco – 217 calories (907kj)
Beef Hard Taco – 224 calories (937kj)
Chicken or Pork Quesadilla – 221 calories (922kj)
Chicken or Pork Soft Taco – 222 calories (929kj)
Lamb Quesadilla – 227 calories (948kjj)
Lamb Soft Taco – 232 calories (970kj)
Beef Quesadilla – 233 calories (974kj)
Beef Soft Taco – 235 calories (981kj)
Cauliflower Dos Capos – 270 calories (1128kj)
Vegetarian Dos Capos – 292 calories (1219kj)
Cauliflower Power Bowl – 287 calories (1199kj)
Chicken or Pork Dos Capos – 289 calories (1209kj)
400 Calories or Less
Lamb Dos Capos – 306 calories (1281kj)
Beef Dos Capos – 309 calories (1292kj)
Chicken Power Bowl – 388 calories (1621kj)
Pork Power Bowl – 390 calories (1628kj)
Cauliflower Classic Bowl – 397 calories (1657kj)
500 Calories or Less
Caulflower IQ Bowl – 414 calories (1729kj)
Lamb Power Bowl – 424 calories (1772kj)
Barbacoa Beef Power Bowl – 435 calories (1816kj)
Chicken Classic Bowl – 465 calories (1942kj)
Pork Classic Bowl – 466 calories (1946kj)
Chicken IQ Bowl – 481 calories (2010kj)
Pork IQ Bowl – 482 calories (2014kj)
Cauiflower Classic Small Burrito – 488 calories (2038kj)
Lamb Classic Bowl – 489 calories (2039kj)
Barbacoa Beef Classic Bowl – 496 calories (2072kj)
So there you go. Your guide to Zambrero calories and the lowest options you can pick. If I didn’t give an exact calorie count for your favourite, you’ll find the Zambrero Nutritional Information here.
IF you want to know what offerings in Zambrero are gluten-free, dairy-free or vegan, then you need this chart here.
What To Read Next
Looking for more Australian calories. Then you might also want to read our guide to the calories in Grilld …
Who is The Wellness Nerd?
My name is Helen Foster, and I’m a health journalist and wellness author. Publications I’ve written for include Women’s Health, Reader’s Digest, Body and Soul, Good Health at the Daily Mail, and more. I have also written 16 books on health and nutrition.