The big comparison: can veggie sausages keep up?

There are now many vegetarian and even vegan alternatives to conventional bratwurst.

The big comparison: can veggie sausages keep up?

There are now many vegetarian and even vegan alternatives to conventional bratwurst. However, the test by Stiftung Warentest shows that they cannot quite keep up with the original products in terms of taste. In return, the nutrient content is often better. But what is the best sausage?

Summer, sun, barbecuing - for many Germans these simply belong together. What should not be missing for 77 percent of men and at least 65 percent of women is of course the bratwurst. It shouldn't even be made of meat. Also says Stiftung Warentest - because the vegetarian and vegan sausage alternatives can definitely keep up with the meaty original.

Stiftung Warentest had 7 vegetarian and vegan sausages made from legumes, wheat or chicken eggs compete in various categories against 14 sausages made with pork. 16 of the 21 sausages tested were of good quality.

In terms of taste, the meat variant was ahead. Both the organic Nuremberg from Aldi and the Franconian from Kupfer were able to shine with very good sensory grades. Ten other sausages with meat also scored well in terms of smell, taste and appearance. The veggies, with the exception of the pea protein-based sausage from Greenforce and the veggie version from Rügenwalder Mühle made from wheat, couldn't keep up.

A meatless alternative also weakened in the pollutant test: per kilogram, the vegan sausage from Alnatura contained 43 milligrams of mineral oil components of the Mosh variety (Mineral Oil Saturated Hydrocarbons). Although there is no legal limit here, the recommendation is a maximum of nine milligrams of Mosh per kilogram. The reason: Mosh can accumulate in the organs.

In contrast, the veggie sausages won the nutritional value check. Those who rely on healthy nutrition get less and better fat with the meatless version. The manufacturers used rapeseed oil or high-oleic sunflower oil, both of which are rich in unsaturated fatty acids.

The meaty sausages, on the other hand, were often made from greasy meat and performed correspondingly worse. There were good test results for the most part with the meat quality. Stiftung Warentest found no evidence of hidden animal species such as horses, rotten meat or mechanically separated meat (remaining meat removed from the bone by machine).

Germs could only be found in one of the 21 tested products. The raw bratwurst with meat from Rewe Wilhelm Brandenburg had a high germ count on the consumption date and already tasted slightly lactic.

Incidentally, the veggie sausages were clearly able to collect points in terms of climate. Their production releases less climate-damaging carbon dioxide (CO2) than the meat-based classics and, according to the manufacturer, the ingredients such as soy do not come from countries with endangered rainforest areas, but from Europe and the USA.

The conclusion in the meat versus veggie test is therefore: Meat-based sausages clearly score points in terms of taste; if you want to pay attention to the nutritional value and climate balance, you are better off with veggies.

The following sausages with meat did well in the test: "Aldi Gut Bio Nürnberger Rostbratwurst" (1.52 euros, price per 100 grams, grade 1.9), "Kupfer Original Franconian Rostbratwurst" (1.03 euros, grade 2.0), "Alnatura Rostbratwurst, boiled" (1.78 euros, grade 2.1), "Meica Bratmaxe" (1.21 euros, grade 2.1) and "Ökoland Delikatess Bratwurst" (2.00 euros, grade 2.1).

The "Rewe Ja Delikatess Rostbratwurst brewed" (EUR 0.75, grade 2.8) and the "Rewe Wilhelm Brandenburg Fresh Fine Bratwurst" (EUR 1.00, grade 4.0) were less convincing in the test.

A good test result was achieved with the vegetarian and vegan sausage variants: "Rügenwalder Mühle Vegane Mühlen Bratwurst" (1.78 euros, grade 2.1), "Aldi Mein Veggie Tag Veggie Bratwurst" (1.10 euros, grade 2 ,2) and "dm organic vegan bratwurst" (1.14 euros, grade 2.4).

The rating "satisfactory" was achieved by "Alnatura Vegane Bratwurst" (1.50 euros, grade 3.4) and "Netto Markendiscount BioBio Vegane Bratwurst" (1.11 euros, grade 3.5).

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