Years ago, veggie burgers were harder to come by, but today you can get a fake meat patty practically anywhere. There’s Impossible, Beyond, Awesome, Ultimate, Better Than Beef, P.L.T, Incogmeato and the latest, Dr. Praeger’s Perfect Burger. With a name like that, it has to be good — but is it?
The Perfect patty is made with pea protein, sunflower oil, beets, sweet potato, butternut squash, carrots, methylcellulose, oat fiber, fruit and vegetable juice for color, sea salt and onion powder. It’s soy free, gluten free and vegan with 20 grams of non-GMO plant protein. One 4-ounce patty has 230 calories, 13 grams of fat and 380 milligrams of sodium.
Thanks to Dr. Praeger’s, a Daily Meal editor (and resident vegetarian) was able to try the new meat alternative. She thought it was good, but it didn’t “bleed” on the stove, nor when it was served like an Impossible burger, and it wasn’t as crumbly as some of its competitors. It was semi-moist but not juicy, and pink but not quite medium-rare in appearance.
Still, the plant-based Perfect Burger looks a lot like beef. It pretty much cooks like beef, it’s wildly fragrant of beef and it tastes like beef. If you blindfolded someone and asked them to taste-test this against a real beef burger, they might be hard-pressed to tell the difference.
Dr. Praeger’s Perfect Burger is a fine choice for people looking for veggie-forward eats that taste like meat but don’t actually contain any animal products. There's just one thing: You can’t go out and buy this to cook at home. It’s for restaurants and food service only (for now, at least). Maybe, just maybe, one day it’ll end up in the frozen section of the best grocery store in your state.