A new war in fast food has been brewing: the vegan vendetta. The chicken sandwich crusades continue on, but that battle has calmed to a state of peaceful coexistence. As we move into this new era of plant-based fast food sandwiches many out there want to know who’s doing the best fake meat. McDonald’s only recently entered the game with the McPlant, while Burger King has had the Impossible Whopper on its US menu since 2019, and the Rebel Whopper, a plant-based burger, has been available at Burger King’s UK locations since early 2020. Over at Business Insider, Grace Dean reports on how these meatless options stack up in the UK.
Initially, the McPlant was being tested in the UK, but McDonald’s has recently started testing it in some United States locations as well. To fairly compare the two fast food options, you have to look at all the elements and unfortunately for McDonald’s size does matter here. Dean found that the plant-based Whopper looks significantly bigger, weighing 10 ounces total—the same as the classic version. But the McPlant comes with a vegan cheese alternative and a vegan sauce, whereas the Whopper does not: it comes with vegan mayo but no cheese.
The McPlant truly has the Whopper beat when it comes to its certified vegan approval status. The McPlant is labeled vegan by the UK Vegetarian Society, but its Whopper counterpart does not have this designation because it is cooked on the same grill as regular meat-based Whoppers. The company says it does this to “deliver the same unique flame-grilled taste.” If the King is truly trying to reach His vegan subjects, I’d say moving production to a separate grill is a necessary change.
In terms of price and taste, both sandwiches were described as delicious by Dean. The McPlant’s price is equal to a Quarter Pounder with cheese, $5.07 for sandwiches only. The plant-based Whopper is also equal to its meat-based twin in price, $6.68. For Dean, the McPlant won this round because of its vegan cheese, but the battle isn’t over.
Which fast food chain should release a plant-based burger next?