Having gone to numerous CES shows, I’ve developed a few survival strategies for the big tech conference: Bring hand sanitizer, wear comfortable shoes, and eat food whenever you get a chance.
While that last rule is mostly because food lines at CES are usually insanely long, as of late, it also applies whenever a company introduces a new plant-based food. And this year, three years after Impossible Foods debuted their second-generation plant-based burger at CES, we had a chance to try a new alt-meat in the form of Goodside Foods meatless crumbles.
Goodside Foods crumbles, a texturized pea and rice protein blend fermented by mycelia, debuted last week at CES 2022. The product is the first under MycoTechnology’s new consumer-facing brand. According to the company, Myco’s natural fermentation process makes their plant protein easier to digest and removes any off notes from plant-based meat alternatives. Interestingly, the product is packaged in a dry, shelf-stable form that is activated by water or broth. Once activated, the crumbles can be served in meat-based products such as pasta sauces or chili.
I decided to drop by the booth and give Goodsides crumbles a try. The company was serving up chili made with the new crumbles, the other usual chili fixings, and a plant-based cheese made by the company’s technology.
How’d it taste? Pretty darn good. I’ve tried both Impossible and Beyond ground beef alternatives in chili and pasta, and the Goodside Foods’ crumbles were on par with both of these products.
What I didn’t do was try the crumbles on their own in, say, a hamburger patty, so I can’t give a verdict on its standalone flavor. However, since the crumbles essentially gave me the same experience in chili as, say, a ground beef, it tells me Goodside Foods has really nailed the mouthfeel of a ground meat product (which is where many of the early plant-based meat products I’ve tasted fall down).
I also have to say, I like the idea of a dry, shelf-stable alt meat product (that isn’t, well, spam). While most plant-based meats freeze well and many – like Impossible – have pretty long refrigerator shelf-lives, the reality is sometimes we all get busy. Like others, I have forgotten to put a package of alt-meat in the freezer before it spoiled. With a shelf-stable product like Goodside’s crumbles, you can load up your pantry and not have to worry about spoilage.
If you’d like to try Goodside Food’s crumbles, you can order them online.
And, if you’re curious to try more mushroom-powered food, you may not have to wait long. The company was also showing off a mushroom milk at CES (ed note: it tastes like Oatly), which Goodside hopes to start shipping in Q1 or Q2 of this year.
You can see the chili made with Goodside’s crumbles in the video below.