I Tried IKEA's New Plant-Based Meat and It Cooks Up Just Like Ground Beef

It’s made primarily from pea protein.

宜家植物肉

云杉吃 / 罗谢尔Bilow

不管你是素食主义者, 杂食动物, 或者绝对是牛排, it’s impossible not to notice the rise in plant-based grocery products. This new wave of veggie-friendly foods goes beyond the lentils and tofu of yore—今天的素食食品 are sophisticated concoctions, made to look, taste, and even “behave” like meat. 

You may be familiar with meat-free patties like the 除了汉堡不可能的汉堡. These two brands have big-time name recognition, with many restaurants across the country using them in veggie-approved menu items. (Burger King, for example, offers an 不可能的弥天大谎, and you can now get a 除了早餐回潮 在Dunkin ').  

But with many of us 吃 the majority of our meals at home, there’s been a shift away from ready-made patties and with all the fixin’s. 现在, brands are offering faux meat products that behave just like ground beef, 猪肉, 或鸡肉, so we can whip up vegetarian chilis, 炸玉米饼, and meatballs in our own kitchens. And Beyond and Impossible aren’t the only players in the game: Even IKEA, the maker of some of the most famous meatballs in the world, is now offering a plant-based meat alternative for home cooking. 

Here's What You Need to Know about Varldsklok

I’m 杂食动物 who loves veggies, so I couldn’t wait to try IKEA’s Varldsklok (translated to “World-wise,” the Varldsklok is meant to taste and cook up like ground beef). I scored a couple of bags, which are sold in IKEA’s frozen foods section for $9.99, and put them to the test.

I’d previously tried IKEA’s ready-made plant-based meatballs—called Huvudroll——爱他们. The pre-made meatballs are super savory, 用甜美的语调, thanks to oats and apples in the mix. 与此形成鲜明对比的是, the Varldsklok has a more neutral flavor palate, which makes it perfect for adding to your own recipes. There’s an impressive amount of protein in each serving—11 grams of pea-based protein for 4 ounces—and a modest amount of sodium. (I’ve tried frozen foods with a 很多 more than 450 milligrams per serving.但是它尝起来怎么样? And is it easy to cook with? I did some experiments with the 1.6磅重的袋子来找出答案.

My Review of IKEA's New Plant-Based Meat

I split the package into two separate portions, so I could sauté half and use the other half for burger patties. I’ll cut to the chase: Varldsklok tastes 真的 美味的. It’s savory, and has a distinctly meaty texture. Varldsklok is also satisfyingly hearty however you cook it. In my opinion, it performs best as burgers, meatballs, and patties. The binding agents in the ingredients help it stick together well, so you won’t experience any crumbling, 无论你烤焦, 烧烤, 或者烤你的晚餐. 

另一方面, because it was so adhesive, I found it sticking to my wooden spoon as I sautéed my batch of crumbles for 炸玉米饼. I did have to use a helper spoon to scrape off the sticky bits, which wasn’t a dealbreaker—but also wasn’t something I experience when sautéeing beef. It did brown beautifully, 虽然, which I consider to be one of the most important factors in cooking ground meat on the stovetop.

Would I use the Varldsklok again? 绝对. In fact, it’s the first item on my IKEA wish list.