Our endangered environment continues to be a subject of conversation. One thing many people are starting to do to reduce their carbon footprint is cut meat out of their diet or at least cut back on eating meat! This may seem hard to do when most of us grew up eating meat as the main protein source for almost every meal. Most of our parents raised us eating meat because that’s how they were raised and for centuries it has been the norm. However, more and more people are slowly learning that the meat industry is not very healthy for your body, the environment, and especially not the animals that are sacrificed for it.
Not to mention, meat production uses a ton of water. If one person gave up eating meat, they could save over 162,000 gallons of water every year! There are around 2 billion people in the world who don’t have the luxury of even having clean drinking water. One-third of water consumption is used for producing animal products. Imagine what an impact decreasing the need for these products could do. It’s hard to change this in your diet just like any other diet is hard to stick to. However, there is a much larger benefit for doing this. This will benefit your body, the entire world, and animals!
With all of that being said, I recently have been trying to cut meat out of my diet as much as possible. I’m definitely not 100% vegetarian, but I’m doing my best. So, I am going to share with you meat substitutes that I have tried. It’s amazing how easy it is to cut meat out when you go shopping and just don’t buy any!
- Beyond Meat Hot Italian Sausage
This is definitely one of my absolute favorites. If you heat this on a pan for 10 minutes, the outside of it gets darker and a little crunchy. The texture is great for a non-meat sausage. It’s not actually spicy like the name leads you to believe, so I like eating it with a spicy sauce or seasoning on it. You can eat this with pasta, on a bun, or by itself with some sides. Yum!
- Beyond Meat Burger
This was pretty good. The texture was a little too soft for my liking, but I’m still getting used to cooking it. I ate it on a bun with some spicy mustard, onions, and avocado. You definitely will want to add your own seasoning to this as well. Overall a great substitute especially compared to black bean, or other veggie burgers.
- Burger King Impossible Whopper
I was so excited to try this and was not disappointed. It truly tastes like a regular Burger King Whopper! The texture is good and the toppings really seal the deal.
- Pure Farmland Breakfast Patties
These vegetarian breakfast sausages had a great texture, but I wasn’t a huge fan of the taste. They were more bearable for me if I ate them in the same bite with an egg. I probably wouldn’t buy these again.
- Meatless Balls (Aldi)
I really enjoy these! I made them with marinara sauce, pasta, and some vegan mozzarella cheese on top. While they are definitely softer than most meatballs, there is something about the flavor of these that I really like.
- Dunkin Beyond Sausage Sandwich
This was so good! They use the Beyond Meat brand, and I really would not be able to tell the difference between a regular egg sandwich with sausage and the plant based one.
Fortunately, a lot of places are adapting to changing times and coming out with meat alternatives on their menus. This is making it easier for many to try going vegetarian. If you are trying to decrease your meat consumption, I hope this list helps! There are so many other brands and products out there as well. Trying new things is always exciting. If you have the option to pick something vegetarian, why not? New year, new habits!