A couple years ago, Habanero’s in Lee’s Summit added a 5-pound burrito to the menu.
The 747 Burrito is a 2-foot-long behemoth stuffed with pork, chicken, beef, rice and beans. It’s topped with red sauce, melted cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and scallions, and costs $21.95 — or nada for those who can finish it in 30 minutes without any “tummy turbulence.”
“You can’t throw up,” says manager Kristina McCoy. “Which has happened.”
Habanero’s, located at 1008 SE Blue Parkway, isn’t the only Kansas City-area Mexican restaurant that serves eye-popping, belly-busting burritos. Eateries in Grandview, Crown Center and Lawrence also lure competitive types with gluttony-promoting challenges.
Around 270 brave eaters have attempted the 747 Burrito Challenge at Habanero’s, and McCoy says about a third of them finished it and left with a free T-shirt and their photo on the restaurant’s “mission accomplished” hall of fame wall.
The fastest finisher was professional competitive eater Molly Schuyler, who polished off the 747 in one minute and 37 seconds. In a video posted to YouTube, Schuyler hunches over her dish, shoveling fistfuls of burrito into her mouth until the trough-sized plate is clean.
“It was horrifying to watch,” McCoy says. “I couldn’t turn away.”
Schuyler, who lives in California, says she loves burritos and that the 747 was “freakin’ awesome.”
Z-Teca Fresh Mexican Grill, located inside Crown Center, serves a 4.5-pound Mexicutioner burrito topped with spicy habanero salsa. Those who finish the $19.95 burrito in eight and a half minutes get their meal for free, plus a T-shirt and their picture on a winner’s wall.
The Mexicutioner got its name from former Royals pitcher Joakim Soria, who once went by that nickname. It’s made by loading a giant tortilla with rice, beans, beef and chicken, then topping it off with salsa, enchilada sauce, queso and three more toppings of the customer’s choice. As if all that weren’t enough, lettuce and chips are served on the side.
Z-Teca has offered its Monster Burrito Challenge for more than five years, but fewer than 20 people have finished off the Mexicutioner, according to general manager Cindy Godsy.
“A lot of them come really close but leave the last few bites,” she says. “Sometimes families will buy it and split it because it’s a good deal.”
The Corner Mexican Food, a four-month old restaurant at 12912 7th St. in Grandview, offers a Family Burrito Challenge for $24.50.
The 3-foot-long, 4-pound burrito contains rice, beans, the customer’s choice of meat, lettuce, onions and cilantro. Guacamole is optional but costs $10 extra — and makes the gigantic burrito even harder to finish.
Challengers have 30 minutes to destroy the burrito — and if they do, they get six months of free meals at the restaurant. Owner Sara Martinez started the challenge to drum up attention for her business. Although many customers have attempted it, only one man came within a few bites of winning.
“He ran out of time,” Martinez says. “We’re waiting for him to come back, we feel like he’s gonna win.”
The area’s cheapest burrito challenge is at Burrito King, 900 Illinois St. in Lawrence.
The $18 King Challenge dares customers with big appetites (mostly college students) to consume a triple-sized burrito stuffed with every meat and salsa served by the fast-food joint. Also inside: Cheese, lettuce, sour cream, guacamole, peppers and onions.
There’s no time limit to finish the humongous burrito, which Burrito King claims is worth $35. Winners get their meal free, plus a T-shirt, a drink and lifelong bragging rights.