Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Gardein Beefless Burger

I heard some good reviews of Gardein’s faux-meat products awhile back, so I’ve been curious to try them. Especially after I learned that they make a veggie burger, too!

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Described on the packaging as “The Ultimate Beefless Burger” this vegan burger patty looked pretty meat-like to me as it sizzled in the frying pan. I even felt a little nervous about it, it seemed so much like real beef! Instead of the infamous “hockey puck” shape of most store-bought veggie burgers, this one looked more natural, like a home made patty.

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I loaded it up with avocado, greens, and hot sauce on a fresh roll. Avocado just goes so well on everything, in my book. Especially when they are on sale ;)

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Close-up!

The taste is very similar to Boca’s traditional “hamburgers”. I didn’t find it very different at all, actually, except for the shape as I previously mentioned. I was surprised, because I had been expecting Gardein to be a vast improvement on the usual frozen veggie burger patty. The texture was that soy, faux-meat texture I think all vegetarians are intimately familiar with by now.

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It wasn’t very flavorful on its own, maybe next time I’ll try slathering it with barbecue sauce while it’s still in the frying pan. Not terrible, but there are better store bought burger patties out there. Although I am a fan of Gardein’s other faux-meat products like their various flavors of “chicken” (which, I should note – come with really delicious sauces, which is probably why I enjoyed them so much more than the burger).

My local grocery store doesn’t seem to carry Gardein products, although when I went upstate for a weekend last month I saw a bunch of them at a big supermarket up there, even way out in the country, which surprised me. Where did I end up finding mine?

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Bed Bath & Beyond! No, really. I didn’t realize they had so many food products either. But they do! And a lot of vegetarian stuff at that! I was quite impressed. And with one of those “save $5 when you spend $15 or more” coupons that I get from them in the mail every so often… it’s the perfect place to stock your freezer with a few bags of faux-meat products.

Rating: ★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆
Gardein
purchased at: Bed Bath & Beyond in Manhattan
price: $4.99 for a bag of 4 burger patties

YumVeggieBurger review #76

20 comments:

  1. I've never seen a BB&B with a freezer section! :-O

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  2. This brand also put out a vegetarian meatballs (they were giving out free samples a the enew UES Fairway awhile ago). I know it's not a veggie burger, but still would be a great sloppy sandwich. :)

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  3. Which Gardein products would you recommend? I had some of their faux "Chinese" chicken a few weeks and it was almost inedible. Admittedly, it might have been that my cooking skills leave something to be desired, but I was prepared to be impressed and wasn't -- but maybe I just tried the wrong thing?

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  4. hmm I actually liked the faux chicken... orange chicken maybe it was? I threw in some broccoli too, and the sauce that came with it. I don't eat faux meats that often aside from burgers, but once in awhile I get a craving for something like this. But I could never rely on faux meats as a part of regular meals.

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    1. Awesome blog by the way- you are my idol :)

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  5. I think the Gardein burgers are the best meat like burgers on the market at the moment by far. Grillers prime comes next.

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  6. After all this talk im getting hungry! Grillers prime, yum!

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  7. Be aware that nearly all non-organic faux meats produced in the USA are processed with hexane, a petroleum by-product of gasoline production. The soybeans are bathed in hexane to produce the textured consistency of the finished product.
    You've been warned.
    For a list of products bathed in hexane during production (and a list of those that aren't) see Cornucopia Institute's Hexane Soy Report published Nov 2010. Cornucopia.org

    I have yet to find out if Canadian-made Gardein product use hexane with their soy.

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  8. My review: Grillers Prime has been my go-to. So I tried Gardein. Open the bag and the frozen burgers emit that kinda funky typical (Boca-like?) soyburger aroma - yecch. However, microwave one up and things change. These burgers have a built-in gravy that adds a lot of really good flavor to the burger. It's kind of a thick vegetarian broth. Warning - if you microwave it 15 seconds too long the gravy kind of oozes out, don't throw it out, spoon it back on the burger! Texture is good too - burgers aren't all cookie-cutter hockey puck identical, and the "juicy" aspect helps. Probably the most meat-like taste and overall experience of any soyburger I've ever tried. Get over the idea that they remind one slightly of Ken-L-Ration Burgers (remember, the dry dog food that created its own gravy?) and these burgers are definitely in the mix and I think worth the extra $1 a box. Good stuff thanks Gardein!

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  9. Update to above review. I ate Grillers Prime and Gardein side by side, unadorned, for test purposes. I think I still have to give Grillers Prime the nod as far as slightly richer taste and less of that objectionable processed soy flavor than Gardein (the extra fat grams in the Grillers Prime help I guess). Also the Gardein "gravy" is more of a thin ooze than thick gravy on second opinion.

    So FWIW:
    Grillers Prime: best flavor.
    Gardein: best texture and juiciness.

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  10. If you grill Gardein Beefless burgers on an actual grill, the results are amazingly like real burgers, especially given the "juice" that sizzles out. One thing Gardein has over Grillers Prime is that Gardein burgers are vegan. Grillers Prime contains eggs and milk products (so, duh, they will taste more like animal), so about as likely to enter the mouth of a vegan as would ground veal burgers.

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  11. Try the Gardein Beefless Sliders. I really like these a lot. I haven't had a lot of experience with Gardein products, but I try just about every brand I see, and thought they were great.

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  12. Just tried the beefless burger..they do have an excellence just off the grill taste... are thick and extrememly juicy.. I had to check to make sure I wasn't eating real beef!! Recommend to all!

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  13. Gardein burgers taste 10 times better when grilled or fried in a pan. Never microwave them!

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    1. I just finished eating the Gardein Beefless Sliders and they were delicious. Once I tasted them I immediately came to the internet to see what other Vegans were saying about them. I've been a Vegan since 10/11/12 and had not really been a big fan of beef for about 5 or 6 years prior. I can still remember the taste of beef but these are far better than any real beef sliders I've tasted. I'm well past my fake meat stage but I do try different fake meat products on occasion for convenience. I will definitely be buying these again.

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  14. I agree, Anonymous - I don't even own a microwave!

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  15. Thanks so much for your thoughts! Going to try them :)

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  16. I just finished eating the Gardein Beefless Sliders and they were delicious. Once I tasted them I immediately came to the internet to see what other Vegans were saying about them. I've been a Vegan since 10/11/12 and had not really been a big fan of beef for about 5 or 6 years prior. I can still remember the taste of beef but these are far better than any real beef sliders I've tasted. I'm well past my fake meat stage but I do try different fake meat products on occasion for convenience. I will definitely be buying these again.

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  17. I am a new vegetarian and i'm very picky. I have tried about 7 different veggie burgers and i've hated all of them (see what I mean). Then a couple of weeks ago I went to a vegan take out place near me and my friend got a veggie burger and made me take a bite -- and it was GREAT. I did some research and found out they use gartein burgers so i've been buying them ever since. I was shocked to see this review because as the pickiest person ever, these are the only ones that I will eat! You must grill them though-- in the microwave they are not good.

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  18. Tried the Gardein Beefless Sliders-yucko! Same old weird taste and texture we are all so acquainted with. Had to chuckle when I read the review above mine. Honey, you obviously are NOT the pickiest person ever! And I don't think I am, either. As someone who is on their way to getting past meat analogs, these burgers just make it easier. Gross. Accept it, you cannot fake the 'beef' taste. If you happen to like fake meat (who does?) I guess they are ok. But to me, a colossal waste of money.

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