Nestle's New Plant-Based Burger Is "Awesome": Here's Our Honest Review
There’s another plant-based burger on the market, joining the likes of the Impossible Burger, the Beyond Burger and more. Sweet Earth, owned by Nestle, recently announced the rollout of its Awesome Burger, which, like other popular products, is meant to mimic beef. The meatless patty (also available in grounds) is made primarily of yellow pea protein and is meant to have the same smell, taste and texture of an actual burger.
Before the Awesome Burger’s official launch on Oct. 1, Sweet Earth held a special event on the Roof at Park South Hotel in New York City, where one of our editors got to try it. The brand’s culinary innovation and product development chef, Tucker Bunch, used the same recipe for the hotel's Wagyu cheeseburger, subbing out the beef for the Awesome Burger patty. The burger came prepared with American cheese, dashi pickle, special sauce (comparable to Chipotle mayo) and red onion on a soft sesame seed bun.
Our taste tester, who has been a vegetarian for four years, found the burger to be incredible and tried to savor it while devouring it quickly nonetheless. The combination of toppings and pillowy bun certainly deserve recognition, but the patty itself tasted just like meat as they recalled it. The texture was near-perfect as well. It wasn’t tough or squishy like plant-based burgers can be. The reddish-pink color on the inside mimicked the wellness of a medium-done burger, also bringing the juciness that one could expect of a beef patty. You would never know this thing was made out of peas. The Awesome Burger is awesome. Our main criticism of the Awesome Burger is that it is not gluten-free, so vegetarian diners who also have Celiac Disease or a gluten allergy should avoid this product.
The Awesome Burger will be available at grocery stores across the U.S. starting Oct. 1, with a suggested retail price of $5.99 for two 4-ounce patties. The product's full ingredient list includes yellow pea protein, water, coconut oil, vital wheat gluten, canola oil and vegetable and fruit juice for color. It has 26 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber. Also, from Sept. 26 through Oct. 3, diners can ask for an “Awesome-style” burger at Burger Joint in Brooklyn, New York. The first 50 lunch and the first 50 dinner guests will get the Awesome Burger for free. After that, the restaurant will have a limited supply available for purchase.
California-based Sweet Earth, founded eight years ago by husband-and-wife duo Kelly and Brian Swette, has 60 additional products in its portfolio, including Mindful Chik’n, Benevolent Bacon, Harmless Ham and Planet Pepperoni — all of which are devoid of animal protein. Plant-based burgers are taking over, baby. There’s Impossible (this just launched in grocery stores), Beyond, Awesome, Gardein’s Ultimate (which isn’t in production yet, but it’s coming) and more. What’s next? There’s nothing more quintessentially American than a real beef patty, but it doesn’t seem that absurd to think that one day, one of these fake-meat contenders could join the ranks of the 101 best burgers in America.