It doesn’t matter whether you’re a vegan, a vegetarian, or just trying to introduce some meat-free days into your diet: everyone agrees that Beyond Burgers are a delicious alternative that is fantastic to keep in the freezer.
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You prepare a Beyond Burger, or BB as I like to call them, in much the same way as you would a more traditional patty, but the difference is, you don’t store them in the fridge. As a result, there’s an extra step to the cooking process: defrosting.
So – how best do you defrost your tasty plant-based patty so you can enjoy it? Official manufacturer’s advice suggests you pop them in a sealed container to leave overnight in the refrigerator, for a slow and gentle thaw that won’t ruin the texture.
However, not all of us are blessed with the ability or patience to wait for this, and many have faced the regret of forgetting to take them out of the freezer for dinner, only to be really craving one. That’s where your good friend the microwave comes in.
Alternative Beyond Burger Defrosting Methods
As there considerably less fat in these bad boys than a burger made from beef, taking only a couple of minutes to fry up on either side, you’re encouraged to defrost them in the fridge for best results. But, as we’ve suggested, there is another way.
The first thing to note is this: do not attempt to defrost a BB using the normal settings of your microwave, as they will start to cook before the frozen inside has a chance to melt properly, absolutely ruining the taste and mouthfeel of the patty.
Search your microwave’s functions for the DEFROST option, as this considerably reduces the heat it produces to allow for a more natural thaw. That being said, you’re still going to want to do this in slow and steady increments.
Around thirty seconds at a time is good. You should keep your full attention on the patty as it rotates – don’t leave the kitchen or start ticking off other tasks! If you start to notice any melted fat dripping off, stop immediately – you’ve gone too far.
Once it’s just soft enough that you can push a fork through, poke a couple of little holes in the top, as this will allow for a more even distribution of heat on the last couple of blasts. It should take you about five minutes, all in all.
As mentioned – if you notice the outside starting to brown off, you need to stop heating. Should you find it’s still frozen in the middle at this point, it’s easy enough to rectify, so don’t panic.
When you begin frying off the burger, turn down the heat and cook each side for a little longer than you normally would. This should help you eradicate any coldness in the center and enjoy a perfectly cooked, piping hot patty every time.
Disclaimer: As we have already stated multiple times, this is NOT the recommended method of defrosting as according to Beyond Burgers. Follow these guidelines at your own discretion!
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Beyond Burgers Vegan?
Yes! As they are entirely plant-based and feature zero animal byproducts whatsoever, they’re more than suited for a vegan diet… and pretty damn delicious, too, but that’s just our opinion so do with it what you will.
However, because it is “designed to have the same taste and texture as animal-based meat” it might make some vegans uncomfortable, given its resemblance and similarities to the beef variety. That said, they’re totally fine to consume as a vegan.
Just be aware that you’ll probably freak out and worry you’re eating meat the first time you try one!
Are Beyond Burgers Healthy?
That depends on who you ask, but in our opinion, yes! As Beyond Meat themselves state, these burgers are “made from simple ingredients, derived from plants, without GMOs, synthetically produced ingredients, antibiotics or hormones.”
As a result, they’re definitely healthier than the meat alternatives in a variety of ways, and they also provide you with a hell of a lot more vitamins and minerals. Plus, thanks to the peas, you’re not missing out on any of that all important protein!
According to this clinical study, conducted with Beyond Meat’s products by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and Stanford University, “improvement in key health metrics” was found “when participants replaced animal-based meat” with BB.
Are Beyond Burgers Gluten-Free and Keto Friendly?
Yes! Developed using only gluten-free pea protein and beet juice extract (as well as other all important ingredients) they are totally gluten-free and safe for those with intolerances to consume without worry.
They are also considered keto-friendly, as they contain only 3 grams of net carbohydrates – although that’s a little on the high side for a keto diet, it’s still in the safe zone, and far more appropriate for this diet than a beef burger!
A couple of the ingredients utilized in the recipe might be questionable to die-hard keto followers, but it’s all about personal preference. If you want to eat it, and you think it’s appropriate, then don’t let anybody stop you.
Can You Eat Raw Beyond Burger?
It’s not recommended that you do, no. The packaging indicates specifically that, “for your safety and satisfaction,” you really ought to only eat it fully cooked. Unlike with regular meat, there’s no distinction here between rare, medium and well done.
A Beyond Burger is either properly cooked or it isn’t – even though it doesn’t contain any meat or animal byproducts, it’s the uncooked veggies and starches you have to watch out for. These are equally likely to be culprits of food poisoning.
If you’ve consumed an undercooked BB, don’t freak out too much. You’re probably going to be fine – just get ready for a tummyache and some discomfort at the worst. That said, any side effects and you should head straight to see your doctor.
You could experience food poisoning from eating pretty much any plant-based meat, because cross-contamination, food handler hygiene and other food safety risks all come into play, even when you’re consuming at home.
The most prevalent symptoms according to iwaspoisoned.com appear to be diarrhea and vomiting, so watch out for dehydration and try to consume as much water as you can (without overdoing it) so you have the best chance of recovering soon.
What are Beyond Burgers Made From?
According to their website, Beyond Burgers contain the following ingredients:
Water, Pea Protein, Expeller-Pressed Canola Oil, Refined Coconut Oil, Rice Protein, Natural Flavors, Cocoa Butter, Mung Bean Protein, Methylcellulose, Potato Starch, Apple Extract, Pomegranate Extract, Salt, Potassium Chloride, Vinegar, Lemon Juice Concentrate, Sunflower Lecithin, Beet Juice Extract (for color)
They also point out that peas are legumes, and that anybody with a severe allergy to other legumes, such as peanuts, should be very cautious about consuming pea protein, as they could very well be allergic.
Global readers, take note: these are only the ingredients in the US burger. Other iterations from around the world could well be different, so be sure to check before consuming in the event of potential allergy risks.