More and more Filipinos are demanding better meat alternatives. While traditional local cuisine has always been famously meat-centric, modern recipes are notably more varied. Now, you can easily spot plant-based ingredients like tofu, chickpeas, and mushrooms on restaurant menus. However, dishes with vegan meat in the Philippines are not as accessible.
At least, not yet. In recent years, there’s been a noticeable rise in the availability of alternative meat options in supermarkets and specialty retailers. Consumers are encouraged to try them out because of their purported benefits to their health, the environment, and animal welfare.
Brands like The Vegetarian Butcher enable food businesses to update their menus with the most in-demand and trending dishes that keep them competitive. Besides that, here are some other ways meat alternatives can benefit your business and bottom-line.
5 Benefits to Adding Meat Alternatives to Your Menu
Thinking of adding “meatless meat” to your ingredients list? Here’s why you should.
1. They meet consumer demand for healthy alternatives.
According to data gathered by Unilever Foods Solutions, at least 42% of meat-eating consumers worldwide are open to switching to plant-based options. Meanwhile, 98% of all consumers purchase plant-based meat alongside animal products. Health is one of the key reasons behind this trend: consumers want to minimize food’s negative impact on their well-being.
Since meat tends to be high in cholesterol-spiking saturated fat, it’s usually the first to go when one tries to improve their diet. Health-conscious consumers look for food with higher nutritional value and fewer risks vs. meat. So, they’re turning to lean plant proteins like the soy-based products from The Vegetarian Butcher.
If your business has regulars, chances are they’re also trying to make healthier choices and prefer meals that cater to their goals. Making wholesome dishes available will encourage patrons to stay loyal since your menu continues to evolve to suit their needs.
2. They satisfy diners with different dietary restrictions.
Not everyone who opts for meat alternatives is vegan. Based on the data, 14% of global consumers identify as flexitarians. This term refers to people who primarily follow a vegetarian diet but occasionally consume meat or fish. The market for vegan options includes vegetarians, flexitarians, and even people who are simply open to trying to cut back on meat.
While vegan menu options will easily capture the vegan market, they also provide an opportunity to appeal to those with other dietary restrictions and lifestyles. For example, these offerings can be safe choices for those with health conditions like heart disease and diabetes.
3. They attract new customers to your business and increase brand love.
Is it your first time adding vegetarian meat alternatives to your menu? This move can bring in new clientele. Barclays predicts that alternative meat will become a $140-billion industry in a decade, so expect demand to continue growing. Now is the best time to ride the wave!
Since consumers are always looking for exciting new dishes to sample, having a more inclusive menu can generate profits, increase your base, and help you build a positive reputation. Make sure to market your menu to health-conscious and vegetarian-leaning consumers to maximize potential for conversion.
4. They require less prep work and are easy to pack with flavor.
Several plant-based meat advantages are practical, too. Executive chef Mario San Pedro of the Mexicali group shared that The Vegetarian Butcher products are particularly “kitchen-friendly.”
They require less preparation than animal meat since you’ll only need to thaw and season them before cooking. Chef Mario uses simple flavor enhancers like spices and Knorr Liquid Seasoning to amp their meatiness, which shows how easy they are to elevate. Products like the NOChicken Chunks even come pre-cut, bypassing the need for complicated knife work.
5. They’re versatile and encourage innovation in the kitchen.
Just like meat, these plant-based alternatives are incredibly versatile. They taste and feel just like the real thing – so you can use them to replace chicken, beef, or pork in almost any recipe. If you’re used to only working with animal meat, you can take this as an opportunity to reinvent your signature dishes with new ingredients.
Easy Plant-Based Recipes for Every Concept
Do you want to experiment with more plant-based recipes? Be inspired by these trending recipes developed by Unilever Food Solutions chefs. They feature The Vegetarian Butcher’s best-selling products in various cuisine concepts, from classic Western to modern Filipino.
These plant-based dishes prove that healthy options can be just as satisfying. With a bit of creativity and expertise, you can easily make meat-free meals an asset to your business.
- These Vietnamese-style fried spring rolls are crispy, golden, and made for sharing.
- This quesadilla is classic Tex-Mex made healthier. It’s complete with gooey cheese, colorful veggies, and grilled NOChicken Chunks, served with a ranch and yogurt sauce.
- This lasagna is as indulgent and comforting as traditional versions, minus the guilt. It features NOMince in the stewed ragù for an authentic mouthfeel.
- This mac and cheese is ultra-cheesy, creamy, and extra hearty. Tip: make it with plant-based butter and cheese substitutes for a fully vegan dish.
- This BBQ chicken Caesar wrap is the perfect on-the-go treat. It features lean protein and energizing carbs, but it's still light on the stomach.
- This chicken sandwich is for thrill seekers and spice lovers. The star ingredient: a NOChicken Burger dripping with hot Nashville glaze.
- This Indian-style butter chicken features a rich sauce that doesn’t skimp on the spices, aromatics, and cream. Serve with naan or basmati rice for the perfect bite.
- This sizzling burger steak levels up a Filipino fast-food favorite. It’s tender and juicy, and it comes with a luscious mushroom gravy.
Keep your vegetarian menu competitive with high-quality meat alternatives. Shop products by The Vegetarian Butcher here. You can also buy frozen packs directly from Unilever Food Solutions Philippines’ Official Distributor through this website.