As healthy and sustainable living is becoming a fixture these days, more and more people have chosen to lead the vegetarian or vegan lifestyle. At first thought, this may seem to be an easy feat. Simply telling yourself to avoid all meat shouldn’t be hard, right? However, the challenge ensues once you’re struck with a certain craving for a dish that, unfortunately, includes meat in the recipe.
But these local brands have taken into consideration the undeniable presence of meat in the majority of peoples’ favorite dishes—from burgers to adobo—and have taken it upon themselves to create their own plant-based alternative. For new and old vegetarians alike, these plant-based meats will allow you to enjoy any meaty dish that doesn’t actually use meat.
With food security and environmental sustainability as its driving forces, Worth The Health Foods (WTH Foods) produce plant-based meat substitutes that are meant to be more accessible to Filipinos in terms of price and availability. Its first product is giniling (ground meat), which is made from mung bean flour, coconut oil, vegetable proteins, and tapioca starch. As a young brand that started only in 2019, WTH Foods plans to create more products that use local ingredients.
Customers can order online by sending them a message with the necessary shipping and payment information or answering the form on Facebook.
The Good Choices
Ready-to-cook, plant-based meals can be at your doorstep after just a few clicks when you order from The Good Choices. Founder and chef Camille Acosta created this venture in hopes of spreading the joys of a vegetarian lifestyle. With meals such as tapa, tocino, and longganisa, people of different ages can enjoy the familiar meat choices made from non-GMO and organic soy protein.
Customers can order on their website, as well as keep track of upcoming events and markets online.
The Real Happy Cow
This vegan food company aims to make the transition to vegetarianism easier and more enjoyable. The Real Happy Cow offers vegan beef made from corn, wheat, and soy proteins, which replicate the taste and texture of real beef. You can also purchase ready-to-cook and authentic meals, such as caldereta, beef rendang, and a vegan version of sinigang called Sinigang na ‘Di Baka.
Products can be ordered online via Facebook message and can also be bought from The Vegan Grocer in Recto, San Juan and Real Food PH in Taguig, Manila.
Vegetari Healthy Bites
If you’re looking for that salty crunch satisfied by the infamous chicharon, Vegetari provides a healthier alternative for the beloved Filipino snack. By using mushroom and seaweed mixed with gluten-free flour, what was originally an unhealthy snack has become an affordable and accessible healthy treat that retains the crunch of chicharon.
Customers can buy online but products are available at selected stores listed on the site.
By taking on a new approach to producing protein in its products, Jack’s Produce was able to innovate Spanish-style sardines. As a mark of true creativity, these sardines are made from jackfruit and come in choices of chili oil, tomato sauce, corn oil, or rice bran oil.
Header photo courtesy of The Real Happy Cow
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Writer: THEA TORRES