Today marks the American launch of McDonald’s much-anticipated new burger. The restaurant will start selling the McPlant in a few locations around the country, ushering in a new era of plant-based menu items that are as mainstream as they get.
The McPlant will be accessible in only eight McDonald’s restaurants: Irving and Carrollton, Texas; Cedar Falls, Iowa; Jennings and Lake Charles, Louisiana; and El Segundo and Manhattan Beach, California.
The chain is testing the new item in certain markets to see how it fits into its culinary operations, and it will only be available on the menus temporarily.
“This particular test will help us understand how offering a burger with a plant-based patty impacts the kitchens in our restaurants,” the business said in a press release.
While this will be Americans’ first taste, numerous European countries have already tested the new plant-based creation.
Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands, Austria, and the United Kingdom tested the McPlant this year, and the overwhelming feedback was that it tasted quite similar to a traditional McDonald’s experience.
Reviewers in the United Kingdom have compared the McPlant to a Big Mac, which is quite an achievement for the business, given that the UK version took longer to produce and is totally vegan.
According to Engadget, the burger has acquired vegan accreditation from the UK’s Vegetarian Society, indicating that it is not only fully free of animal products, but also cooked and prepared separately from McDonald’s non-vegan foods.
The version sold in American test markets, on the other hand, will remain plant-based, with the iconic sesame bun, slices of real American cheese, and a mayo-based sauce.
It’s also worth noting that it will be cooked on the same grill as the meat and dairy products, so it may not even qualify as vegetarian, depending on how you define that.
McDonald’s introduced its first plant-based burger late last year, along with a three-year global agreement with Beyond Meat.
The food manufacturer is working with the chain on protein for a whole plant-based line that might eventually include chicken and breakfast sandwiches.