Asda joins the fray as supermarkets battle it out with new vegan ranges

Veggies get edgy as retailers tap into plant-based eating.

17 January 2018
food-to-gofrozenchilledNPDplant-basedsupermarketsvegan

There’s a vegan food revolution sweeping the UK supermarket scene, as the retailers scramble to launch their very own vegan ranges. Timing it with Veganuary (a horribly awkward combination of ‘vegan’ and ‘January’), this plant-based craze is cramming into aisles and onto shelves.

Here, we roundup what everyone is doing.

Asda

Asda has a new food-to-go range that has been registered with The Vegan Society. On offer are:

  • Onion Bhaji Wrap, £2.50
  • Falafel and Houmous Sandwich, £2.50
  • Mexican Bean & Rice Salad, £2.50

“With more and more customers going vegan, we’ve introduced a range which not only answers the dietary needs of the nation, but that also turn favourite foods in vegan-friendly, on-the-go options,” said Andrew Johnston, Asda innovations chef.

More products on the way later in the year too.

Tesco

Along with its director of plant innovation Derek Sarno, Tesco launched the Wicked Kitchen range, which includes 20 vegan-friendly ready meals along with wraps, sandwiches and salads. These include:

Sandwiches and wraps

  • Carrot Pastrami-Spiced Wrap, £3. A beetroot tortilla wrap power-packed with crisp, punchy carrot and a vibrant vegetable mix.
  • Sweet Potato Pakora Wrap, £3. A sweet potato pakora, fire-roasted red pepper, crispy carrot and creamy Sriracha vegan mayonnaise in a tortilla wrap
  • Smashin' Pumpkin Falafel Sandwich, £3. Dressed with punchy vegan harissa mayonnaise, crunchy vegetables and roasted red pepper hummus on tomato bread. 

Salads

  • Rainbow Curry Bowl (GF), £3.50. Curried pulses with fiery sweet potato, onion bhajis, fragrant mango and a cool minty dressing. This one’s gluten-free. 
  • Moroccan-Inspired Bowl, £3.50. Turmeric bulgur wheat salad, spiced beetroot, tangy pickled red cabbage and roasted red pepper hummus.

Ready meals

  • Wicked Teriyaki Noodles, £4. Teriyaki-style noodles with press-roasted cluster mushrooms, sweet ‘n’ savoury glaze, Asian-style vegetables and tangy lime to finish. 
  • Naked Burrito, £4. Pulled king eryngii mushrooms roasted in a blend of Mexican inspired spices and jalapeños.
  • Nana's Mushroom Bolognese, £4. Slow-braised meaty eryngii mushrooms and vegetable linguine in a legendary secret sauce from Derek’s grandmother’s recipe.

Pizza

  • Caponata Sourdough Pizza, £4. Wood-fired sourdough, aubergine and caper caponata and a pop of zingy salsa verde.
  • BBQ Mushroom Sourdough Pizza, £4. Pulled king oyster mushrooms and spice on wood-fired hand-stretched sourdough. 

There are also more products in the pipeline.

Sainsbury’s

There were seven new plant-based products from the supermarket as a solution to meat-free mealtimes. From the range are:

  • Sweet & Smokey BBQ Pulled Jackfruit, £3
  • Caramelised Onion Shroomdogs, £2.50
  • Cumberland Shroomdogs, £2.50
  • Mushroom Mince, £1.20. Made using ugly mushrooms to tackle food waste.
  • Cauliflower Steaks, £2. It comes with a feisty chimichurri marinade

“With over a quarter of meat-eating Brits actively reducing their meat consumption, there is a clear appetite for exciting and new ways to introduce more vegetables into our lives,” said Georgina Lunn, product developer for fresh produce.

“Sainsbury’s new range of plant-based products provide innovative, inspirational solutions for everyday meals – from our supermarket-first pulled jackfruit, to the super-satisfying ‘Shroomdogs,’ we’re really proud to be offering a wide choice of flavours and can’t wait to hear how our customers are using them.”

Ocado

Online retailer Ocado claimed the largest launch with more than 90 new additions to its vegan range. The new products include dairy-free ice cream alongside vegan ingredients and other meat-free offerings. Some of these are:

  • Own Brand vegan range, including products like vegan mince and 'chicken' style nuggets and escalopes, with prices starting at around £1.75
  • Follow Your Heart Organic Vegenaise, £3
  • High Omega Bleu Cheese Salad Dressing, £4.39
  • Ben & Jerry’s Dairy Free Peanut Butter & Cookies Ice Cream, £5.99
  • Vegetable Quarter Pounders, £2.63
  • Golfera Vegan Organic Wheat, Beetroot & Elderberry Slices, £2.99
  • Free and Easy Dairy Free Egg Replacer, £2.29
  • Co Fro Matcha Frozen Dairy Free Coconut Yoghurt, £5.29
  • Tofurky Original Kielbasa Sausage, £3.99
  • Marigold Engevita with Added B12 Yeast Flakes, £3.05

Waitrose

UK retailer Waitrose launched a new food range called Good Health and it includes three vegan products:

  • Vegan Mean Greens, £2.60. With crushed peas and edamame, cucumber, spinach and mint on dark rye bread.
  • Sweet Potato and Chipotle Sandwich, £3.30. Roasted sweet potato and smoked paprika chipotle chutney with roasted courgette, peppers and aubergine, butter beans and rocket on sundried tomato bread. 
  • Mushroom and Miso Stir Fry Bites, £2.62. Containing mushroom, soya and black turtle beans with miso.

Co-op

The retailer is looking beyond food, with plans to expand their vegan wine range to include 100 products by the end of 2018. It already has a vegan range that includes hot meats of lentil daal soup, three bean chilli and a frozen buttersquash and quinoa roast, alongside grab and go items. Plus they have vegan-friendly doughnuts and biscuits.

Marks and Spencer

While the supermarket faced a backlash from customers with its cauliflower steaks, it did launch a vegan (and vegetarian) range back in November last year, including sandwiches, veggie pots, edamame bean burgers, sweetcorn and chickpea burgers, beetroot falafel and sweet potato steak.

Aldi

Aldi released a vegan range called Earth Grown in the US earlier this month, including vegan burgers, hotdogs and meat balls, but there are no current plans to roll this out into the UK.

Lidl

It has no plans for a dedicated vegan range, but there are vegan-friendly options in stores.

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