Impossible Burger vs. Beyond Meat Burger: Taste, ingredients and availability, compared

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The Impossible Burger 2.0.

Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images

Plant-based meat has taken the world by storm, with two major brands dominating the market. Both the Impossible Burger and Beyond Meat Burger have redefined the veggie burger, because both of them mimic the texture of real beef.

More and more people are choosing to eat less meat for various reasons, such as personal health concerns and the environmental impact of animal agriculture. And with new brands cropping up across the market — like Meatless Farm Co. and Kellogg’s new Incogmeato line, consumers are faced with more decisions than ever before.

The Beyond Burger and the Impossible Burger remain the top contenders in the meatless meat market, so we broke down all the need-to-know details. Consider this your ultimate guide to two of the most popular faux meat options on the market.

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Read more: Where to get the Impossible Burger at fast-food and chain restaurants | New version of Beyond Burger looks and tastes more life beef | How to cook the Impossible Burger now that it’s (finally) in grocery stores

What is the Impossible Burger made of?

Look at the packaging on a Beyond Burger or an Impossible Burger and you’ll find a sprawling list of ingredients.

impossibleburger

impossibleburger

The Impossible Burger.

Impossible Foods

The Impossible Burger contains

Water, Soy Protein Concentrate, Coconut Oil, Sunflower Oil, Natural Flavors, 2% or less of: Potato Protein, Methylcellulose, Yeast Extract, Cultured Dextrose, Food Starch Modified, Soy Leghemoglobin, Salt, Soy Protein Isolate, Mixed Tocopherols (Vitamin E), Zinc Gluconate, Thiamine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B1), Sodium Ascorbate (Vitamin C), Niacin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Vitamin B12.

Other than water, the main ingredient is soy protein concentrate. In and of themselves, soybeans are perfectly healthy, but soy protein concentrate is heavily processed, which means many of the benefits of the raw food are lost.

For example, raw soybeans provide a great deal of calcium, vitamin C, vitamin B-6, iron and magnesium, but Impossible Foods fortifies its burgers with vitamins and minerals, likely to make up for the lost nutrients during processing. 

beyond-burger-cross-section

beyond-burger-cross-section

The Beyond Meat Burger.

Beyond Meat

What is the Beyond Burger made of?

Just like the Impossible Burger, the Beyond Burger has a long list of ingredients. It contains:

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 protect quality), Ascorbic Acid (to maintain color), Beet Juice Extract (for color), Acetic Acid, Succinic Acid, Modified Food Starch, Annatto (for color).

In terms of ingredients, the two burgers are pretty similar, the exception being the main protein source. Beyond Meat uses pea protein instead of soy protein, and there’s no soy leghemoglobin, which is Impossible’s key ingredient that makes the burger “bleed.”

Also, Beyond Burger’s red color comes from beet extract, rather than heme from the leghemoglobin like in the Impossible patty.

Related: There’s a new meatless burger on the market. Find it at Whole Foods.

Are the Impossible and Beyond Burgers vegan?

Yep, the Impossible Burger and Beyond Meat Burger are both vegan — neither contains any animal products of by-products. 

In a statement to CNET, Impossible Foods confirmed that its burger is vegan but noted it has

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