McVegans: Proving Vegan Food is To-Die-For

If you’ve been around campus this past week, you’ve probably seen the McVegans food truck hanging around with a massive line of people. This food truck is run by Globally Local, a “food distribution organization whose goal is to provide high quality, local-first, organic produce at an affordable price.” Founder James McInnes wanted to make it easier for conscious eaters to access and afford local, organic food, and thus opened Globally Local, which helps us “gain control over our food” and “improve our health.

Being a vegan who spends a lot of time at Western—with few food purchasing options—and as someone who craves fast food during midterm season but can’t satisfy those cravings because most fast food is centered around animal products, seeing a popular vegan option on campus was nothing short of a dream. As much as my diet is focused around healthy clean eating, sometimes you just want that fast food feel and a massive, McDonald’s-esque burger.

The Big McInnes Burger—McVegans’ take on the Big Mac—was the only menu option when I visited the truck by the Social Science Center, but the truck has also been offering a Pulled Jack Sandwich which is a bbq sandwich made from jackfruit and served with a creamy, house-made coleslaw.  I can quite easily say that I was not disappointed. The burger does exactly what it intends to; it gives the feeling of a McDonald’s burger but without the animal products. Personally, I couldn’t tell the difference between the sauce at all and, enjoying vegan mayo more than actual mayo, this elevated the burger.

The only difference between the Big Mac and the Big McInnes was the patty itself, which surprisingly wasn’t like most of the other vegan patties I’ve had, which could quite easily disguise themselves as meat. It is made of “chickpeas, onions and breadcrumbs and is held together with flax flour,” and somehow managed to give the same consistency and “mouth feel” as a McDonald’s burger.

The McVegans’ portion size is undoubtedly more generous than McDonalds, and is more aesthetically pleasing. Of course, it is still fast food, but just looking at this burger will make you melt like its surprisingly delicious vegan cheese (as a vegan, I hate most attempts at vegan cheese). However, the burger does leave you with the same after feeling of fast food: satisfaction mixed with a little bit of gross sickness. But, per usual, that feeling is worth it, and because the burger is entirely plant based, organic, and environmentally friendly, you don’t have to feel guilty about eating it.

What struck me most about seeing the McVegans food truck on campus was the warm reception. It’s nice to see so many people coming out to support a local business, and willing to try vegan food. And, because the food is delicious, this truck has the potential to change attitudes about vegan diets and assumptions that all vegan food looks like a bland, flavourless plate of vegetables when, in reality, it involves a lot of burgers, too.