What is in Beyond Beef? A Close Look at the Plant-Based Ground Meat

Beyond Beef is a revolutionary plant-based ground meat substitute created by Beyond Meat. With its meaty texture and versatility, Beyond Beef aims to perfectly replicate ground beef while being better for human health and the planet. But to understand what makes Beyond Beef so special, we first need to understand what exactly is in it.

Beyond Beef’s Main Ingredients

While ground beef contains just beef and occasionally some basic seasonings, Beyond Beef has a more complex ingredient list that allows it to mimic the taste, texture, and juiciness of real ground beef without using any actual meat. Here are the main ingredients in Beyond Beef:

  • Water: Provides moisture and juiciness.

  • Pea protein: Extracted from yellow peas, this plant-based protein provides meaty texture.

  • Expeller-pressed canola oil: Adds richness and flavor.

  • Refined coconut oil: Gives a fatty, meat-like feel.

  • Rice protein: Boosts the protein content.

  • Natural flavors: Impart beef-like taste.

  • Cocoa butter: Helps mimic the marbling of real beef.

  • Beet juice extract: Provides the reddish color of meat.

  • Pomegranate concentrate: Also contributes to the meaty color.

  • Methylcellulose: Binds ingredients together and improves texture.

How Beyond Beef Recreates the Composition of Beef

Beyond Beef doesn’t just try to imitate the taste and texture of beef – it breaks beef down to its most basic components and sources those components from plants. According to Beyond Meat’s founder, real beef is made up of just 5 key building blocks:

  • Amino acids (protein)
  • Lipids (fats)
  • Carbohydrates
  • Minerals
  • Water

By extracting proteins, fats, minerals and water from plant sources like peas, rice, coconut, and beets, Beyond Beef manages to closely recreate what makes real beef taste, smell, and feel like beef.

Furthermore, by relying on simple heating, cooling, and pressure – not genetic modification – Beyond Beef generates the fibrous protein structure of animal meat from its plant-based protein sources.

A Nutritional Breakdown of Beyond Beef

So what does all this translate to in terms of nutritional content? Here’s a breakdown of the nutrition facts for 4 oz (113g) of Beyond Beef compared to 4 oz of regular 80% lean ground beef:

Nutrient Beyond Beef Beef
Calories 270 287
Total Fat 18g 23g
Saturated Fat 8g 9g
Cholesterol 0mg 73mg
Sodium 380mg 75mg
Carbohydrates 3g 0g
Fiber 2g 0g
Protein 20g 19g

As you can see, Beyond Beef stacks up quite closely to regular ground beef. It has a very comparable amount of protein and slightly less total and saturated fat. It does contain more sodium, but that’s because the Beyond Beef is already fully seasoned when it’s packaged.

One benefit of Beyond Beef is it provides a small amount of fiber, unlike beef which has no fiber. It also has zero cholesterol, whereas beef contains high levels of dietary cholesterol.

The Benefits of Choosing Beyond Beef

Beyond Beef provides all the meaty satisfaction of ground beef with several health, environmental, and ethical advantages:

  • Contains no hormones or antibiotics: Common in conventional meat, these are not present in plant-based Beyond Beef.

  • More environmentally friendly: Producing Beyond Beef generates 90% less greenhouse gases and requires 46% less energy than traditional beef production.

  • Conserves natural resources: Beyond Beef utilizes far less land and water compared to the resource-intensive process of raising cattle.

  • Animal welfare: No animals are raised or slaughtered to make Beyond Beef.

  • Versatile and convenient: Beyond Beef can be used in any recipe that calls for ground beef, from tacos to burgers to meatballs. It comes pre-cooked and ready to use in just minutes.

  • Nutritional perks: Beyond Beef has fiber, vitamins, and minerals that beef lacks, and no cholesterol.

So by choosing Beyond Beef, you can enjoy the quintessential flavor and versatility of ground beef while feeling good about the health, sustainability, and ethical impacts of your choice.

How Does Beyond Beef Differ from the Beyond Burger?

Beyond Meat actually offers several plant-based meat products, including the famous Beyond Burger. So how does their Beyond Beef differ from their burger?

While the Beyond Burger comes as pre-formed patties designed specifically to cook up as juicy burgers, Beyond Beef is a loose meat substitute that can be used in any recipe requiring crumbled, chopped or ground meat. Just like real ground beef versus beef patties, the Beyond Beef and Beyond Burger start from the same meat substitute base, but are shaped and packaged differently to suit different cooking needs.

Beyond Beef’s versatility makes it easy to enjoy deliciously meaty tacos, pasta sauces, chili, meatballs, and so much more, without having to form patties or guess at portions. So Beyond Beef provides all the flavor and protein of the Beyond Burger in a format that’s ideal for recipes that call for ground meat.

How to Cook with Beyond Beef

Cooking with Beyond Beef is easy – just use it anywhere you would use regular ground beef! Here are some quick tips:

  • Cook Beyond Beef in a skillet over medium heat, breaking it up into crumbles as you go.

  • Add Beyond Beef to pasta sauces, chili, taco filling, casseroles, and stuffings for an extra meaty punch.

  • Form Beyond Beef into balls or patties to make vegan meatballs or personal sized burgers.

  • Use Beyond Beef in traditional dishes like Bolognese sauce, sloppy Joes, meatloaf, and Salisbury steak.

  • Follow package instructions to thaw Beyond Beef before cooking if frozen.

  • Cook Beyond Beef to an internal temperature of 165°F before serving.

With its convincing meat-like juices and texture when cooked, Beyond Beef can truly elevate vegan and vegetarian cooking.

Is Beyond Beef Healthy?

Given its highly processed ingredients and similarities to real beef, is Beyond Beef actually a healthy choice compared to whole foods like beans and vegetables? According to nutrition experts, Beyond Beef can be part of a healthy diet, but shouldn’t replace whole plant foods.

Compared to beef, Beyond Beef has some nutritional advantages. As a plant-based food, it contains no cholesterol or antibiotics, and has more iron, vitamin B12 and fiber. However, Beyond Beef is high in saturated fat, sodium and calories compared to unprocessed vegetarian protein sources like legumes.

In moderation, enjoying the meaty satisfaction of Beyond Beef in place of ground beef can be a smart choice for vegetarians or meat-eaters looking to reduce consumption of animal products. But for optimal health, Beyond Beef is best paired with plenty of fresh produce, whole grains, nuts, seeds and lower sodium plant proteins.

Beyond Beef: A Meaty Revolution

Beyond Beef represents a true breakthrough in plant-based meat technology. With its impressively meaty taste and texture, this innovative beef substitute makes it easy for anyone to enjoy delicious flexitarian, vegetarian or vegan dishes. Crafted from a clever mix of proteins, fats, juices, flavors and colors from plants, Beyond Beef manages to closely mimic the experience of cooking with real ground beef.

Of course, no single food can constitute a diet on its own. But when enjoyed in moderation as part of an overall healthy eating pattern, Beyond Beef offers a nutritious and environmentally sustainable way to indulge your cravings for hearty, meaty meals. So next time a recipe calls for crumbled, chopped or ground meat, consider giving Beyond Beef a try – your tastebuds, health and the planet will thank you.

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What is Beyond Meat made of?

Uncompromisingly delicious meat made directly from plants. WHAT KIND OF PROTEIN DO YOU USE? We use a variety of non-GMO plant proteins including pea, brown rice, mung bean and faba bean, which team up to give you juicy and nutritious plant-based meat that’s a good source of protein.

Are Beyond beef healthy?

Unfortunately, even though an alternative to beef is better for the environment, it may not necessarily be better for your health. The Beyond Meat burger has 18 ingredients, the Impossible Burger has 21. Both are highly processed and contain several additives and inflammatory oils.

What are the ingredients in beyond beef patties?

Ingredients: water, pea protein isolate, expeller-pressed canola oil, refined coconut oil, contains 2% or less of the following: cellulose from bamboo, methylcellulose, potato starch, natural flavor, maltodextrin, yeast extract, salt, sunflower oil, vegetable glycerin, dried yeast, gum arabic, citrus extract (to …

Is Beyond beef an ultra processed food?

Beyond Meat, along with other plant-based meat brands, is often criticized for being “unhealthy” by the meat-eating public and media due to being “ultra-processed”. Health researchers are calling on nutritionists to stop using the ultra-processed label in relation to plant-based meats.

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