U.S. tests of McDonald’s McPlant Burger begin November 3

McDonald’s plans to trial the McPlant Burger, a plant-based burger, in eight select U.S. cities starting on November 3, 2021.

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McDonald’s plans to trial the McPlant Burger, a plant-based burger, in eight select U.S. cities starting on November 3, 2021.

“We’re always testing new items and flavors, and this particular test will help us understand how offering a burger with a plant-based patty impacts the kitchens in our restaurants. The McPlant was created to give customers more delicious options in addition to the McDonald’s burger line-up you know and love,” the company wrote in a press release.

The McPlant Burger is made from plant-based ingredients like peas, rice and potatoes. The plant-based patty is served on a sesame seed bun with tomato, lettuce, pickles, onions, mayonnaise, ketchup, mustard and a slice of American cheese. The burger is cooked on the same grill as the chain’s beef burgers, which could be an issue for those following a vegan diet.

The plant-based burger will be sold for a limited time at McDonald’s locations in Irving and Carrollton, Texas, Cedar Falls, Iowa, Jennings and Lake Charles, Louisiana and El Segundo and Manhattan Beach, California. The tests are expected to run through early December.

This is the first time the McPlant Burger will be available in the U.S. The quick service restaurant (QSR) chain previously ran tests of the plant-based patty in Denmark, Sweden, the Netherlands, Austria and the UK.

More plant-based to come

McDonald’s co-developed the McPlant Burger in conjunction with Beyond Meat. The two brands also plan to explore the development of other plant-based menu items in the future, including chicken, pork and egg.

The plant-based foods market is set to make up 7.7% of the global protein market by 2030, with a value of $162 billion, according to a report from Bloomberg Intelligence

Other quick service brands, including Burger King, Starbucks and White Castle, have already introduced plant-based products to their menus.

McDonald’s focuses on innovation

The McPlant Burger was first announced in the November 2020 investors meeting, following a 2019 test of a plant-based burger called the P.L.T. in Canada. The burger featured a plant-based patty with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. 

McDonald’s is heavily focused on innovation in 2021. In February, the chain launched its long-awaited lineup of chicken sandwiches.

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