- Dunkin’ introduced a Beyond Meat sausage patty at stores across Manhattan on Wednesday.
- The INSIDER food team took a trip to our local ‘Dunkies’ to get an early taste of the newest addition to the menu.
- We did a blind taste test in which we compared the Beyond Sausage sandwich with Dunkin’s traditional sausage breakfast sandwich.
- We both were able to distinguish between the two patties, but our editor was floored.
- Ian disliked the flavour and consistency of the Beyond Meat sausage, but Meredith was pleasantly surprised by the texture. Still, neither of us thought the Beyond Sausage tasted much like real sausage.
- Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.
Dunkin’ is the latest big-name chain to join the plant-based meats craze.
Following the lead of restaurant giants like Burger King, Del Taco, and TGI Fridays, the coffee and doughnut brand introduced a Beyond Meat sausage patty at stores across Manhattan on Wednesday.
The INSIDER food team took a trip to our local ‘Dunkies’ to get an early taste of the new addition to the menu and compare it to its meaty counterpart.
The restaurant, located in Manhattan’s Financial District, was decorated with green balloons and signs to commemorate the arrival of the faux meat. Even the employees who took our order and prepared our sandwiches were donning T-shirts emblazoned with the words “great taste plant based.”
We paid $US18.68 for two Beyond Sausage Breakfast Sandwiches with egg and cheese and two traditional Sausage Breakfast Sandwiches with egg and cheese. Surprisingly, the sandwiches were both priced at $US4.29, despite the fact that meat alternatives like Beyond Meat or Impossible Foods are often more expensive.
We took our haul back to the office and set ourselves up for the taste test. We put on a blindfold, of sorts, and had fellow INSIDER lifestyle reporter Amanda Krause officiate the test.
Meredith went first, then Ian. Neither of us had ever tried plant-based meats before, and we weren’t told whether we were eating the real meat or the Beyond Sausage until after the test. Here’s what we thought:
Aside from vegetarians and vegans, I’m probably the closest you can get to Dunkin’s target demographic for its Beyond Meat products. I enjoy a nice steak or chicken cutlet as much as the next girl, but I’m also fairly environmentally conscious and believe that meat substitutes could be a good way to limit carbon emissions. Needless to say, I was looking forward to sinking my teeth into some faux meat for the first time.
Amanda handed me the first sandwich and I did my best to get a good whiff from underneath my googly-eye glasses. I immediately caught the recognisable scent of a sausage patty. Either this was the real sausage or Beyond Meat had managed the impressive feat of getting the scent exactly right.
I took a nice-sized bite and knew for certain that I was eating real meat. Between the sweet, juicy taste of the patty and the hint of spice that came with it, the sausage just tasted too authentic to be a replica. The texture was a bit crumbly but not too soft. I took one more bite for good measure, and then moved on to what I already assumed would be the Beyond Meat version.
Amanda delivered the second sandwich and, once again, I sniffed it out. This one was not nearly as potent as the first, although it did vaguely smell of sausage. I took a bite and was immediately struck by the fact that this patty was much spongier than the first. I didn’t mind the texture, but the patty didn’t taste like much. Sausage typically has a stronger pungency and certainly should have been the primary flavour of this sandwich. Instead, this “meat” took a backseat to American cheese and eggs. That’s because it wasn’t meat at all.
Our hostess confirmed that my guesses were correct; the first sandwich had a real sausage patty, and the second boasted the plant-based meat. I didn’t necessarily dislike the Beyond Sausage, but it certainly didn’t compare to the real deal. And, honestly, if this stereotypical millennial wasn’t on board with swapping out sausage for the newly-minted replica, I’m not sure who would be.
Disclaimer: I eat a lot of Dunkin’. When I heard that we were going to be testing out Sausage Breakfast Sandwiches with egg and cheese, I was thrilled. When I heard that they were actually made of Beyond Meat, I was…less thrilled. However, I kept an open mind and gave the faux sausage a shot.
Amanda placed a sandwich in front of me and I gave it a good whiff, making sure not to get any grease on my chic goggles.
The smell was typical of a Dunkin’ sausage sandwich. The peppery scent of the patty reminded me of freshly cooked meat and hangovers, but despite the medically inadvisable amount of Dunkin’ I consume on a regular basis, I still couldn’t peg which sandwich I was holding before me.
That is, until I bit into it.
Immediately, I knew I was dealing with the real thing. The delicious, fatty meat, melted, radioactive-yellow cheese, and an egg patty with dubious origins all hit the pleasure centres of my brain.
The next sandwich smelled a bit off. It was like someone had taken an egg and cheese sandwich and sprayed it with sausage perfume. I shrugged, girded my loins, and took a bite.
The patty was rubbery and acrid. It had a sharp sour layer in the center, and I couldn’t finish the patty. If I’m being honest, it sort of ruined the sandwich for me. But who knows, maybe I’m biased. Maybe I feel like I’m cheating on meat. Maybe I just needed a hangover.
We suspected that the order in which we tried the sandwiches may have influenced our ability to guess correctly, so we had our editor, Anneta Konstantinides, give it a try in reverse order
Like Meredith and Ian, Anneta had never tried a plant-based meat before. We slapped some glasses on her and gave her the Beyond Sausage sandwich first, which she thought was very chewy but wasn’t sure whether or not it was the real sausage. When she tried the sandwich with the real sausage, Anneta was convinced that it was the fake meat.
“I thought that the first one was too chewy and the second one was too slimy,” Anneta said after the test.
Needless to say, she was shocked by the results.
“I was surprised that they were able to make the Beyond Meat sausage so chewy,” Anneta said. “It reminded me of diner sausage.”
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