So you’ve gone vegan because, you know, it’s good for humanity and stuff. And that’s great, except you still find yourself struggling with phantom cravings for thick, juicy burgers. Emphasis on the juicy there. You have one of two options: either you stick to the salad bar while inwardly weeping salty tears of superiority, or you make the choice to renounce altruism altogether and give in to your primal, meat-eating urges.
But wait! Thanks to the company that calls itself “The Future of Protein,” there’s now a third option: you stop by your local Whole Foods and pick up a package of bleeding veggie burgers.
As of today, Beyond Meat, the LA-based startup whose board includes the ex-CEO of McDonald’s, is debuting the Beyond Burger, an all-natural plant-based burger that is entirely free of GMOs, soy, gluten, and preservatives and contains 20 grams of protein per serving. And, oh yes, bleeds when you cut into it.
Juicy, bloody veggie patty.
According to the New York Times, the “blood” comes from the addition of pulverized beets to the mix. And that was just one thing the company had to get right in creating the Beyond Burger — they also wanted the patty to stay moist on the inside as it cooked on the outside, and to give off the sweet, sweet scent of beef as it was cooking.
Joseph Puglisi, a professor of structural biology at Stanford University and Beyond Meat’s lead scientific advisor, spoke of the struggle in creating the perfect patty, texture-wise: “We were able to get fat distributed throughout a patty — but in meat, fat is distributed in sheets,” he said. “Plants don’t have ligaments.”
But apparently, Puglisi and his team’s efforts paid off. Tom Rich, vice president of purchasing and distribution in the Denver region of Whole Foods Market and a vegetarian himself, said the Beyond Burger “tasted and felt and chewed like any other burger, and on some level, I just want to be able to eat the same way everyone else eats.”
Unfortunately, the Beyond Burger isn’t quite up for grabs everywhere. It’s still in the “soft launch” phase, which means that it’s currently only available at a handful of stores in Denver and D.C. According to Beyond Meat’s Facebook page, they hope to expand the distribution within the next several months.