The Plant-Based Meat Brand J. Kenji López-Alt Recommends

Mocked meats are everywhere these days, and they're only getting more realistic. From Sundial food's development of vegan, skin-on chicken wings to the dozens of vegan butcheries crafting and developing artisanal meat and seafood around the world (via Veg News), there's no better time than now to venture into plant-based meats. One Gallup poll found that, in 2020, four in 10 Americans tried a vegan meat substitute. The poll also found that most of those who did would try plant-based meat again— that's not too shabby. Still, it can be hard to know what products are worth the hype.

However, if you can trust anyone's recommendation, it should be J. Kenji López-Alt's. Undoubtedly, the award-winning and best-selling cookbook author, New-York times food columnist, and Chief Culinary Advisor for Serious Eats has some experience with food (via Kenji Lopez-Alt). Recently, he took to Instagram to share his favorite plant-based steak substitute, and judging by his video, it looks pretty unbelievable. As he cuts into the perfectly seared filet, it shreds into juicy pieces that will have you wanting to get your hands on a piece to try for yourself.

Juicy Marbles plant-based filet mignon

The impressive piece of plant-based steak, which J. Kenji describes as the closest alternative on the market, comes from a brand by the name of Juicy Marbles (via Instagram). According to the company, the filet is made primarily from a blend of soy and wheat to deliver 23 grams of protein. The color is evenly marbled to recreate the look of an actual filet, with a crust that is designed to develop quickly, ensuring that the filet's center maintains its meat-like tenderness.

As for the flavor, J. Kenji took to Instagram to share that it tastes and smells a lot like other generic plant-based meats and compares it to Beyond Meat. He aligns the texture with something closer to corned beef than an actual filet but insists that it isn't dry but is more "shreddy than juicy." He recommends using it in recipes well-suited to this texture, like shredded beef tacos or, perhaps, chopped and topped on a vegan taco salad.