We're big fans of Quorn, and we've raved about it plenty of times before on our blog. But the one thing we've always had quite a hard time doing is explaining to people what Quorn actually tastes like. Quorn is made from mycoprotein, which is derived from a micro-fungus, but we wouldn't say that Quorn tastes like mushrooms or anything like that. In fact, given all of the different Quorn products you can buy, it's much more complicated than that.
If we had to put it in simple terms, Quorn tastes like a slightly less intense version of tofu, without the bad aftertaste. But the wonderful thing about Quorn is that it is an excellent carrier for flavour, and you can really influence the taste of Quorn by how you cook it.
We wanted to get a bit more specific on this topic, looking at a few of the best-selling Quorn products separately. Let's take a look:
Of all the Quorn products you can buy, we actually think Quorn mince might be the best. It is excellent for cooking, and it soaks up flavours extremely well. The texture is very similar to that of beef mince, and the longer you cook the Quorn mince, the softer and more delicious it becomes. The taste will be hugely influenced by the spices you use, so don't be afraid to add plenty of spice to Quorn mince while you cook it.
Although Quorn doesn't actually mention the word 'chicken' on the packaging of their Quorn pieces, it is absolutely what the pieces work best as a replacement for, but interestingly we wouldn't say that Quorn pieces have the texture or taste of chicken really, and certainly as close to the real thing as Quorn mince is to beef mince. However, they still work very well and are so versatile that we'd recommend giving them a shot.
We'd probably say of all the Quorn products you can buy, Quorn nuggets taste the most similar to the "real thing", that being chicken nuggets. In fact, we've tested this with people we know and they've rarely been able to tell the difference between Quorn nuggets and chicken nuggets during blind taste tests. If you think about it, most of the time when you eat chicken nuggets, you're dipping them in sauces like ketchup and barbecue sauce. If you use the same sauces for Quorn nuggets, we genuinely don't think you'll be able to taste the difference between the chicken and the Quorn. Definitely keep a bag of Quorn nuggets in your freezer for when you get back from a night out!
Anything else to mention?
There are some exceptions to what we've mentioned above about the taste of Quorn, as there are some Quorn products that have a distinctively different taste to their popular products like the mince and pieces, but these all tend to be newer products. For example, the Quorn Vegan Smoky Ham Free Slices (pictured) have a very smoky flavour which is pleasant, but definitely quite different from other Quorn products and not easily masked if you're not a fan of it.
If you're reading this post because you haven't tried Quorn yet and you're wondering what it tastes like, hopefully the above information has given you an idea. As you can see, it's not totally straightforward and there are no many Quorn products that the taste really does vary quite a lot, but generally Quorn tastes a bit like a better version of tofu and it very easily absorbs other flavours, making it ideal for cooking.