As Ron Swanson has proved time and time again, it's tough to beat a hamburger, on a bun, with nothing. But veggie burgers are now getting damn close to that meaty ideal, thanks to a new advance by Impossible Foods: a veggie burger that looks and tastes like a real, medium-rare beef patty. Chris Traeger, eat your heart out.
Based on research conducted by Stanford professor and Impossible Foods founder Patrick Brown, the as-yet unnamed veggie burger has a flavor somewhere between turkey and real beef, and is made out of amino acids and fats that come from plants rather than animals. It's also got an extremely similar consistency to meat, and contains juices derived from molecules found in hemoglobin -- the stuff in blood that makes it red.
With no cholesterol or meat-induced comas after eating, it's possible that this is the vegan-friendly burger of the future. And keep your eyes peeled, because they're also working on vegan versions of cheese and eggs. Could they convert even the staunchest carnivores? No word yet from Mr. Swanson.
Adam Lapetina is a Food/Drink staff writer for Thrillist, and praises seitan. Read his musings at @adamlapetina.