Where’s the beef?

The new plant-based burger introduced at Burger King


Photo by Connor Robb

A Photo of the whopper and impossible whopper side by side

Connor Robb, Staff Reporter

In the past decade, plant-based burgers have become very popular. Many restaurants have been introducing vegetarian burgers which include no beef. When people think about a healthier plant-based burger Many wouldn’t think of Burger King, which released the Impossible Whopper nationwide in late September.

With the burger being launched nationwide, I decided to go into Burger King and compare it to their regular Whopper to see if it was a good alternative.

I went to Burger King and ordered two regular Whoppers and two Impossible Whoppers with one of each being plain. The burgers consisted of two buns and some meat, without any toppings getting in the way. I did this to see if there was a significant difference between the two.

Right after ordering, what I noticed overall was the price. The regular whopper retails for $4.19 while the impossible Whopper retails for $5.59. It costs six dollars for two Whoppers, so the varying cost and the fact that you can get two burgers for almost the same price of one Impossible Whopper makes it a hard sell. So if a customer is just getting one it might be a turnoff for those just looking for a healthier alternative.

A major problem with the burger is the lack of texture. The burger isn’t as moist as its beef counterpart which is the most significant difference between the two burgers. The burgers I ordered plain made this the clearest without the distraction of mayonnaise, lettuce and tomatoes. The burger didn’t feel as juicy because plants don’t have juices, causing the burger to feel dry.

Another concern of mine was the taste”.” Though the Impossible Whopper unfortunately had very little flavor. This was again made clear on the plain burgers. When eating the burger it gives the illusion of eating meat, but by removing all of the toppings you really get to experience the patty, which in the case of the plant burger you could not taste. When taking a bite of the burger it feels like there is meat but there is definitely something missing definitely missing something.

The low flavor of the burger is one of the biggest differences, whereas the whopper has a recognizable taste that most of the Burger King burgers have, but by changing this it changes the entirety of the burger. By losing the taste of the burger we also miss out on more. The patty is one of the most important parts of a traditional burger. So by removing it, it makes sense that the taste would change or completely disappear.

Many might expect the burger to be much healthier, but this isn’t the case as it is still a fast-food restaurant where food is synonymous with being unhealthy. Most of the nutritional facts being so close it almost doesn’t make a difference as a healthier alternative. So if one is looking for a healthier alternative this burger is not it. But for people who are vegetarian this burger will give people more options next time they find themselves in Burger King.

For vegetarians, this would be something good. Many fast-food restaurants don’t have vegetarian items, or if they do it isn’t a burger. With Burger King advertising this so heavily, it might cause other restaurants to get out of their comfort zone and start making vegetarian items more commercially available.

The nationwide advertising campaign seems to have been successful, but I wonder if the burger will ultimately be a flop simply because there isn’t going to be a large group of customers who are interested in it after trying it. Its main market is health which is ultimately not true if you are getting the burger for health it might be better to just order a regular whopper. People going to a restaurant called Burger King are going to want a beef burger.