Leonardo DiCaprio shared his support for plant-based meat this week, urging his 27 million followers across Twitter and Facebook to reduce their meat consumption to fight the climate crisis.
The Hollywood star shared an image from Beyond Meat, the meat alternative brand in which he is an investor, on his social media platforms, which read, “If every person in the US replaced just one beef burger per week with a plant-based Beyond Burger. It would be the equivalent of taking 12 million cars off the road.”
He wrote alongside the photo, “Every single person can help the planet and reduce climate change with one small choice every week. Join me and @BeyondMeat in our mission to rethink the future of food.”
According to a University of Michigan study, producing the Beyond Burger uses 99% less water, 93% less land, 46% less energy and emits 90% fewer greenhouse gases when compared to a standard quarter-pound 80/20 beef patty.
And many more companies are also entering the marketplace, with the global meat substitute industry now worth more than $20 billion, and sales of fresh plant-based meat alternatives nearly doubling every month last year in the US.
Fighting climate change is just one of many reasons, along with health and other ethical concerns, that more of us are trying to move towards a more plant-based diet.
Lentils, tempeh, tofu, jackfruit and numerous other natural ingredients can all replace meat for veggie versions of our favorite dishes. But sometimes, we just want something closer to that familiar feel of a burger or chicken tender for our comfort food fix.
So here are some of the best plant-based meat alternatives for that quick and easy veggie treat.
Field Roast Chef’s Signature
This burger is not a meat copycat, instead embracing the savory flavors of barley, fresh carrots, onion and garlic that make up the patty. Hand-formed in Seattle, this offering from Field Roast avoids the synthetic feel of some of the other burger alternatives on the market, but still perfectly replace the traditional version and works beautifully with all our favorite toppings and sides.
The Impossible brand is known for their ingenious use of plant-derived heme to replicate the taste of meat and even make their burger appear to ‘bleed’ when cooked rare. Their product can be crumbled like ground beef or made into patties, is gluten free and is also packed with protein, iron, zinc and B vitamins.
Gardein Seven Grain Crispy Tenders
These are the best like-for-like alternative to chicken tenders we’ve found for a quick kids dinner or tasty game day snack. And a three-piece serving is 140 calories and 340 milligrams of sodium, which is low compared to most typical tenders made with real chicken. Just add your favorite dipping sauce!
Most of the vegan chicken on the market is breaded, but Daring also make a non-breaded option in three flavors that is perfect sautéed in curries, stir fries and similar dishes. And apart from some spices there are only three ingredients — water, soy protein concentrate, and sunflower oil.
Along with their burgers, the Leo-backed Beyond Meat also make some of the best, and certainly most meat-like, sausages on the market. They come in three flavors, Original, Sweet Italian, and Spicy Italian. Each serving has 16 grams of plant-based protein, and boasts 43% less fat and 26% less sodium than the traditional sausage. They’re also naturally cholesterol-free with no hormones, nitrites, nitrates, GMOs, soy, or gluten.