Chipotle says queso will fill gap in menu, help sales

A exterior image of the Chipotle Mexican Grill located in the Chelsea neighborhood of New York City.

DENVER — Chipotle hopes its new queso dip will satisfy its customers’ cravings — and help reinvigorate sales that have been hurt by food scares.

The Mexican food chain said it will begin offering its new all-natural queso dip in restaurants nationwide next Tuesday.

Chipotle marketing director Mark Crumpacker says the company has long known that the lack of queso was also hurting sales. It had been testing the cheese dip earlier this year.

The chain said it developed a recipe for with cheddar cheese, peppers, tomatoes and tomatillos that passed customer tests, but will vary a bit from batch to batch.

Denver-based Chipotle is trying to move past a norovirus outbreak in Virginia this summer and an E. coli outbreak from 2015.