The chain is owned by The Restaurant Group (TRG), which is also putting its 11-strong Food and Fuel gastropub group in to administration.
The Times reports around 1,500 jobs are at risk.
It comes just over a week after TRG said it had seen a ‘significant’ impact on trading following the virus shutdown, with sales falling 12.5% across the business.
A TRG spokesperson told BigHospitality: “We have conducted a review of the performance of our business divisions, with a particular focus on the expected future cash generation profile of each of our business units.
“The Group believes that both Food and Fuel Limited and Chiquito Limited will achieve negative EBITDA in the financial year ending 27 December 2020.
“As a result, the Group has taken the very difficult decision to appoint administrators for Food and Fuel Limited and filed a notice of intention to appoint an administrator for Chiquito Limited.
“The decisions have been incredibly difficult and we recognise the significant impact on all of our colleagues that are affected. We thank them for their hard work and commitment during these very testing times.”
Around 20 of Chiquito’s 79 restaurants are not part of Chiquito Limited and will be unaffected.
TRG bought Food and Fuel for £15.4m in 2018. The administration will not impact its other 74 pubs within the Brunning and Price and Ribble Valley Inns groups.
TRG trades from around 650 sites in total and also owns restaurant brands including Wagamama, Frankie & Benny’s and Coast To Coast.
In February the company said it was looking to to cut the size of its struggling leisure arm, which includes Chiquito, from 350 sites to 260-75.