I tried the new Greggs Vegan Sausage, Bean and Cheeze melt & its delicious
Greggs is a British institution which we all know, love and order when hungover.
But, everyone has their favourite bake, roll or melt which they tuck into whenever they need a hit of carby deliciousness.
Even vegans and vegetarians have been able to get stuck into the classics in recent years after the release of the vegan sausage roll and vegan steak bake.
The meat product free items were huge hits among fans who lined up down the street to grab a bite when they first came out.
Well, from today those of us who avoid eating meat, eggs and/or dairy can tuck into another major Greggs bake!
Behold the Vegan sausage, bean and cheeze melt!
The newest addition will be available from today, August 5, and will hit shelves in over 2,000 shops nationwide priced from £1.60.
It's designed to mirror some of the iconic features of the original sausage, bean and cheese melt and the vegan friendly version is also wrapped in layers of golden puff pastry.
Instead of the classic fillings, it’s loaded with chunky pieces of vegan sausage, grated original and mozzarella flavoured vegan 'cheeze' and of course, lashings of tasty baked beans.
But, the big question is… is it any good?
I tried it out so you can check whether or not to shell out for the latest vegan bake.
Tried and Tested – The Results
Firstly, when you take it out of the packet it looks a lot like any other Gregg’s bake. It’s rectangular, has a distinct design on the top (that lets the staff know what’s inside each one) and leaves flaky pastry all over your lap.
So far so good.
The pastry looks less shiny than the meat version – likely due to a lack of egg or milk wash and an absence of butter. The matte texture looks similar to that of the vegan sausage roll. Which is to be expected.
To properly inspect the delicious baked good I chopped it in half.
Sadly no beany, cheesy goodness spilled out of the melt (note the name), but it did smell good and it meant that my mouth wasn’t immediately scalded as sometimes happens with the none vegan version.
Looking inside it looks like a mix of cheesy beans and a few sausage balls. I’ve never looked inside a meaty sausage, bean and cheese melt (who has) so I’m not sure how it compares.
Now, for the true test – how does it taste?
When eaten, the pastry is slightly less crisp, but still delicious with a good mouth feel.
Over all, baked beans are luckily already vegan. So the saucy base of the bake is identical and this goes a long way towards ensuring it tastes like the classic version.
There’s a stronger peppery, herby flavour than usual which I believe is down to the vegan sausage pieces. The texture of the meat replacement is good although not exactly the same as real sausage.
The vegan chunks are a bit firmer and slightly bittier and aren’t dispersed all through the bake. I prefer the placement of the sausage in the classic version.
Now, the vegan mozzarella does melt well into the beans, but isn’t as stringy and gooey as dairy cheese is. It’s a little thicker and this makes the sauce more paste-like.
As I’m overanalysing the flavour, I’d say that I prefer the regular cheese. It’s not unpleasant like a lot of vegan cheeze can be. It tastes close to the real thing but just a bit stronger or nuttier and has that slightly different texture.
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Over all would I buy it again?
As I’m a vegetarian who sorely missed the Gregg’s sausage, bean and cheese melt… yes.
It’s not a perfect substitute, but it comes very close and has all the distinct flavours and similar textures to satisfy the craving for one.
If I was a meat-eater I’m not sure I would make the change because real cheese and pastry with butter makes every melt better. However, if you’re cutting back on your animal-product consumption then it's definitely a good alternative!
Finally, I have to add, Gregg’s… if you’re listening… please can we get a vegetarian version?
Some of us love cheese, butter and eggs, but not real meat sausages! Go on, make a foodie’s dreams come true…
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