Its a new ball game! Ikea launches meatless meatballs to address climate change

There are so many things to love about Ikea. How a trip can ensure you meet your fitbit goals of 10,000 steps, the Billy Bookcase and how they are leading the world in the fight for climate change and the circular economy.

We can’t high five them enough. The stats are huge. Did you know they are the biggest sellers of hotdogs globally? (now they have veggie dogs), they sell 1 million of their classic meatballs a year and their owners, Ingka Group are investing €600m over the next 12 months in solutions that have a direct impact towards the Paris Agreement and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Ikea Kitchen

Their drive for sustainability prompted some big questions. Meat lovers don’t want to eat a veggie ball, they want meat. It’s been over a year in production but in a few weeks its going to land in Australia. Get ready for the ‘plant ball’. It is a plant-based meat substitute is made with yellow pea protein, oats, potatoes, onion and apple, and looks and tastes like meat. With a climate footprint of only 4% of the classic IKEA meatball. Whoah!

This is our plantless ball…

So we got an exclusive early taste! Our plate of balls were served with mashed potatoes, lingonberries, peas and gravy sauce, in the same way as the traditional dish. So what does it take like? Well, first of all cutting into a ball is unctious, it keeps its shape, attitude, but like meat, it gives way softly to a lovely centre of texture and flavour. Its a little ‘Beyond Meat’ in the mouthfeel which is a huge compliment to teams who have created a food experience far superior to any soy protein, jackfruit, mock meat we have had before. The meaty taste is achieved by adding umami flavours, like mushroom, tomato and roasted vegetables. Yum-O.

If you have a devout meatloving friend then we suggest the ‘Pepsi/Meatball’ challenge get a plate of meatballs, a plate of plantballs – blind fold them (yeah we know its Ikea but they will understand) and see which you love most!

Our world is facing an urgent climate crisis. Realising the importance of taking immediate action, this is one way for you to make a difference and it delivers on Ikea’s ambition to become climate positive by 2030.

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About the author

Karen’s corporate job back in the UK had included entertaining clients in some of the best restaurants. This ultimately sparked a curiosity 'Just how do they do that?' (she confesses she was brought up on meat and vegetables, so this was all very exciting). Currently a Mr & Mrs Smith 'Tastemaker', she’s flashpacked around the world, learning about wine, experiencing different cultures and cuisines and had a two- year love affair with it all. Originally from England, she finally settled in Australia and continues to be besotted by food, wine and travel preferring to focus on the luxury end of town (thread count does matter).