A look inside Chili kitchen: From a Chili's "chef"
A lot of it is pre-packaged / prepped in some way. A comprehensive list would take forever... but here's some samples.
Meat arrives frozen but pretty much has to be thawed in advance, then cooked on the spot. The only prep that can be done here is fajita chicken or steak (also used for nachos, quesadillas, etc.) which can be partially cooked... set to the side... then finished at service.
Stuff like a side of veggies... almost always microwave steam bag.
Fried items, the SW eggrolls, cheese sticks, jalepeno poppers... they just come in giant frozen bags - we just toss them (frozen) into the frier and they are done in a few minutes.
The awesome blossom onion... that's actually totally fresh, day-of, and made pretty much on the spot. One of the few menu items I still enjoy because of that fact.
Feel free to follow-up about specific items if you like.