• Dan Spencer

Beyond Burger Versus Impossible Burger! What's The Difference?

The fake meat war is in full swing and is only going to get more competitive over the next few years. Right now the two companies leading the charge are Beyond Meat and Impossible Foods. Their burgers have taken the food industry by storm through imprinting on major restaurants and grocery chains. It's pretty hard to even go a day without hearing or seeing something related to these burgers. As a non-vegetarian I have come to love both of these delicious products. Before I go into detail about my experience with them let's first talk about each burger individually.


Beyond Burger from Rocket to Venus in Baltimore, MD.

BEYOND BURGER

The Beyond Burger first came out back in 2013. It has been through several revisions since it's debut. They have recently released a new version which is said to be more meaty and juicy. Beyond's mission statement says the following, "We are creating one savory solution that solves four growing issues attributed to livestock production: human health, climate change, constraints on natural resources and animal welfare." Below are the ingredients as of 8/20/2019.


INGREDIENTS: Water, Pea Protein Isolate*, Expeller-Pressed Canola Oil, Refined Coconut Oil, Rice Protein, Natural Flavors, Cocoa Butter, Mung Bean Protein, Methylcellulose, Potato Starch, Apple Extract, Salt, Potassium Chloride, Vinegar, Lemon Juice Concentrate, Sunflower Lecithin, Pomegranate Fruit Powder, Beet Juice Extract (for color)


I have had the Beyond Burger at a few restaurants and also bought it at the grocery store. I will talk about the most current version of this burger and will do the same for the same for the Impossible Burger later on. The current version of the Beyond Burger is very meaty and juicy. It lives up to that statement on their packaging. Texturally I can't tell a different between this and a meat-based burger. I was pleasantly surprised when I opened the patties from the store and put them on the skillet. There was no difference between cooking them compared to a meat-based burger. The smell, the smoke, and even the aura was the same! I am by no means a good cook, but I will say that's the best burger I've ever made! I seasoned it will some salt, pepper, minced garlic, and a premixed hamburger grilling seasoning. It came out slightly charred and I dressed it with ketchup, mayo, lettuce, and onions. It has this unique initial taste to it that I can't describe. It's not something you get from a meat-based burger so I have nothing to compare it to. The funny thing is that the initial taste is so good that I find myself wanting it in real burgers now. To sum it up, the beyond burger is great and I have no complaints!


LOOK: 100% compared to a meat-based burger

TEXTURE: 100% compared to a meat-based burger

TASTE: 75% compared to a meat-based burger. (Only because the initial taste.)


WHERE TO FIND IT: Safeway, Giant, Kroger, Harris Teeter, TGI Fridays, Carl's Jr, Del Taco, Dunkin Donuts, and many more!


Impossible Whopper - Photo Credit: Michael Thomas

IMPOSSIBLE BURGER

The Impossible Burger first came out in July of 2016. The company spent years of research and development on this burger by studying animal products at a molecular level. Impossible Foods says that the process of making it uses 95% less land and 74% less water. It also emits about 87% less greenhouse gas than making a burger from a cow. Below are the ingredients as of 8/20/2019.


INGREDIENTS: Water, Soy Protein Concentrate, Coconut Oil, Sunflower Oil, Natural Flavors, 2% or less of: Potato Protein, Methylcellulose, Yeast Extract, Cultured Dextrose, Food Starch Modified, Soy Leghemoglobin, Salt, Soy Protein Isolate, Mixed Tocopherols (Vitamin E), Zinc Gluconate, Thiamine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B1), Sodium Ascorbate (Vitamin C), Niacin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Vitamin B12.


I have only had the Impossible Burger at a few restaurants and it isn't available in grocery stores just yet. They say it will be in stores later this year though. My first plant-based burger ever was the Impossible Burger and I was honestly quite shocked that I didn't hate it. It was actually quite tasty! When the Impossible Burger 2.0 came out earlier this year I got it at the same restaurant that I always do. I didn't realize it was the new version but as soon as I took the first bite I was in love! It was so meaty and juicy with not a single difference between it and a meat-based burger. (For those who remember the first version it wasn't very juicy and it had an after taste.) I recently had the Impossible Whopper at Burger King the other day. I can honestly say from someone who has eaten whoppers his whole life that there's not a single difference. I would go as far to say what's the point in even selling cow burgers there anymore. It was spot on! To sum it up, I love the Impossible Burger ... always have and always will!


LOOK: 100% compared to a meat-based burger

TEXTURE: 100% compared to a meat-based burger

TASTE: 100% compared to a meat-based burger.


WHERE TO FIND IT: Burger King, Qdoba, Red Robin, Hard Rock Cafe. Check with your local non-chain restaurants also.


IS ONE BETTER THAN THE OTHER?

The answer to this question is easy ... NO! Both are amazing and one isn't better than the other. They are just different. Really the only difference is taste. They are spot on when it comes to look, feel, and texture with a meat-based burger. I love the fact that I have two to choose from. It's like some days you want a Dave's Triple from Wendy's and then some days you want a Big Mac from McDonalds. Those options now exist with plant-based burgers to! I suggest to all my readers to try them both. If you like meat-based burgers I guarantee you won't be disappointed!


In closing, it's clear that flux meat products are here to stay. We are seeing them used in other dishes such as tacos, meatballs, and casseroles. They are proving to us meat eaters that we might not need to eat animals anymore. The truth is that I haven't even wanted a meat-based burger since I've been eating the Beyond and Impossible Burgers. What does that mean? Someone who grew up eating off the dollar menu at every fast food restaurant, grew up with a family who grilled, grew up just loving everything about meat ... Now I don't even want it and you probably won't either.




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