A few days ago my local food store was selling Gardein products for 50% off. Because Gardein products are imported from USA and not alot of people buy them they usually cost €7-€8, which is ALOT especially for only 300g. So it is not economic to buy especially not when i could spend that money on a whole bunch of lentil and bean packages or buy 4 packages of tofu for that price! But because it was on sale and i had bonus checks i decided to buy 2 packages and give them a try.
I bought Mandarin Orange crispy chicken and Teriyaki Chick’n strips.
So, first up i tried the mandarin orange crispy chicken and prepared it by frying and then adding some of the sauce.
My opinion? It was delicious and very realistic. I haven’t eaten chicken nuggets in a very long time, maybe 10 years i think. But from what i remember these were very similar the “real thing” – but better! If i had been served these at a restaurant i would have thought it was actual meat and would have had to see the package to be convinced that it wasn’t meat. If you are missing chicken nuggets as a vegan, then i would recommend these! I have made tofu nuggets before, but it really isn’t the same thing. I also liked the sauce, it reminded me alot of a chinese orange chicken dish i used to eat! This gets 4/5!
And the second Teriyaki Chick’n strips.
The first time i tried these i just heated them up and added the teriyaki sauce, and i can say… it wasn’t super amazing. Instead the texture was a little too soft and spongy, it was missing the chewiness which i had hoped. The second time i tried them i fried them and try to fry them “hard” so that they get a more crispy outside, which was a little better. But for the remainder of the chicken* pieces i am going to bake them in the oven and see if that makes them better. But i am not so impressed by these so far… i thought they would be more like chicken strips with more of a chewy texture which i like, but instead they are just soft and spongy. The sauce is good, but then again you can just make or buy your own teriyaki sauce and use Fry’s chicken strips or use seitan and that would be much better according to me. This one gets 2,5/5.
Are gardein products worth buying? Well if you live in the USA and they are cheaper then yes… they are delicious. But if you live in Sweden or countries where Gardein is expensive then no, i don’t think it is worth the price. Instead you can buy the local brands or make seitan, or just skip fake meat completely!
They are one of the most “realistic” fake meats i have eaten, or the chicken nugget style ones anyway and i have heard that the gardein meatballs and black bean burger is one of the best on the market, but i have not tried them so can’t confirm or deny the statement!!