Lets just say we’ve eaten a lot of plant-based products down through the years. Indeed, we’ve probably eaten them all. Nuggets, tenders, burgers, strips – you name it – we’ve cooked it. With all that in mind we’ve lined up the very best of the best for you, and also noted those you should probably skip.
The best of the best
Gardein Ultimate Plant-Based Chick’N Filet
These are a remarkably good plant-based attempt at a fried chicken patty. The taste and texture is fabulous. The only caveat to bear in mind is their humungous size which might be too much for some. Full review.
Gardein Ultimate Plant-based Chick’N
With a name like this you’d hope the brand have something big to back up such massive claims. Thankfully Gardein have bright their A game here. These tenders are astonishingly good; a fabulously crunchy exterior with meaty, chewy Chick’N inside. For my money these are better than actual chicken based nuggets out there – they’re that good. Our choice for the best overall plant-based chicken out there. Full review.
MorningStar Farms Incogmeato Nuggets
If you’re looking for an impeccable Chik’N Nugget look no further than the Incogmeato brand, new for 2020 from MorningStar Farms. The crunchy texture is perfect for dunking in your sauce of choice, while the interior texture has a pleasing chew too. Read our full review.
MorningStar Farms Popcorn Chik’N
Looking for a take on popcorn chicken? MorningStar Farms really surprised us with this one. When using an air fryer these can make terrifically crisp single bites. Read more.
Alpha Crispy Chik’N Burger
The three pack is certainly a little on the skimpy side, but keep an eye on the shelves of Costco for a bumper pack of these that are a steal. The patties themself are handsomely portioned, have a great thin breading that gives way to a meaty enjoyable patty. A very solid choice for a meat free chicken burger. Full review.
Sprouts Spicy Chicken Veggie Burgers
A hidden gem for sure. Check out your local Sprouts Market for this most excellent chicken burger. There’s no real spice mind you the flavor here is more savory rosemary. More info.
Gardein Seven Grain Crispy Tenders
Gardein know there meat free tenders. These were previously our favorite plant based tender until Gardein’s newer Ultimate product. Cooked correctly (see air fried) the exterior can develop a great crisp, giving way to enjoyable chewy meat. Read more.
Middle of the pack
The following products don’t quite reach the heights of those listed above – but if you come across them – they’re very serviceable products.
Lightlife Plant-Based Chicken Fillets
Read our review. Quick review – these are hefty and weighty fillets that cook up to a crisp finish, with tear and shred inside. The flavor is mild to the point of bland though, so when using these you’ll want to think creatively.
Beyond Chicken Plant-Based Tenders
Following the huge success of their fabulous Beyond Burger – come these plant-based chicken tenders. Sadly, they don’t have the same leap-forward magic that the burger brought to the market. For me, a decidedly average product. See the full review here.
MorningStar Farms Popcorn Chik’N
The Buffalo seasoning is next to non-existing in truth, plan on bringing your own hot sauce to proceedings. The exterior breading cooks up nice and crisp in the air fryer though, and the interior is decent, if not a tad mushy. Full review.
Gardein Meatless Chick’N Strips
These aren’t the most exciting of products out of the bag. The thin chicken strips are fairly bland, with a strong wheat gluten flavor. That said, if you get creative with seasonings they can come to life. Think fajitas with a chili-lime blast of flavor. See the full review.
The marketing and packaging for this brand is the best around, but the product itself doesn’t live up to the promise. It’s decent, but not top tier. Our full review here.
Skip the following…
The following products didn’t really get us that excited. We tried them
Gardein Crispy Goden Chick’N Nuggets
These are nuggets of a time goes by. The coating is a thin breading and rather lackluster. The interior isn’t much better and rather bland and uninspiring.
Boca Spicy Chik’N Veggie Patties
Another product that doesn’t live up to it’s billing. There’s nary a hint of spiciness here. That failing is compounded by a patty thats bland and mushy. Read the full review here.