We tried IKEA’s new Plant Balls — here’s what we think

Meat-free alternatives have been all the rage for a while now. Quorn, Beyond, Impossible—they’ve all had their hand in revolutionising plant-based diets. Even as a moderate meat-lover, I personally don’t and will probably never understand why others choose veganism or vegetarianism, but I respect it nonetheless.

When IKEA first announced the launch of their HUVUDROLL plant balls, my first thought was, “Finally, my non-meat eating friends will get to taste the goodness that has been my comfort food for years.”

Ikea Plant Ball 1

The plant ball is made of pea protein, oats, onions, apples, and potatoes, and only has 4% of the meatball’s climate footprint. Those who are all about sustainable eating will want to jump in on this.

Ikea Plant Ball 5

The ball’s exterior looks suspiciously similar to meat, and if not for the fact that I’m literally cooking them out of a green packet that reads ‘Plant Balls’, you could’ve had me fooled. I drizzle the same old but timeless brown sauce over the balls—just like they would in IKEA restaurants—and begin to convince myself that the familiar tang of pork and onion will once again hit me.

It does not. But that’s not to say that the plant ball isn’t delicious in its own right. Granted, it doesn’t present the same bite as its meat-based counterpart, but that’s a small price to pay in the name of health and sustainability.

Ikea Plant Ball 3

Taste-wise, it’s undoubtedly flavourful and quite addictive if I do say so myself. The umami kick definitely still stands and would pair nicely with tomato sauce and pasta. Either that or you could go the old fashioned route and have the plant balls alongside rosti and IKEA’s signature lingonberry sauce.

The plant balls are now available in both IKEA restaurants and the Swedish Food Markets.

Ikea Plant Ball 2

Date & Time: Plant ball dish available now at all IKEA restaurants, take-home packets available in November 2020 

Price: S$6.50/8 plant balls in restaurants, $8/bag at the Swedish Food Market