is it good for health?

Verified on 09/13/2022 by PasseportSanté

According to a recent CREDOC study, the French are increasingly planting their diet. In recent years, vegetable steaks have appeared on the shelves of our supermarkets. Their composition varies: based on soy, legumes or even cereals.

On the nutritional side, they provide proteins, iron, and even for some polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Characteristics of vegetable steak

  • Rich in complete proteins;
  • Rich in iron;
  • Ideal for vegetarian diets;
  • Source of polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Vegetable steak: its nutritional and caloric values

Depending on the ingredients of the steak (soya, wheat, legumes), the nutritional values ​​will be different. Indeed, vegetable steaks made with soy will be richer in protein.

For 100?g of soy steak:


Average content


Water (in g)


Protein (in g)


Carbohydrates (in g)


Lipids (in g)


MUFA (in g) 5.2
PUFA (in g) 4.6

Dietary fiber (in g)


Calcium (in mg)


Iron (in mg)


Zinc (in mg) 1.3

The benefits of vegetarian steak

Quite often, vegetable steaks are made up of several ingredients.

Good protein content

Soy-based vegetable steaks are high in protein and complete protein.

As a reminder, a protein is made up of subunits called amino acids. The latter are 20 in number. Among these 20 amino acids, 9 are called “essential” because they are only provided by food. Indeed, our body is unable to synthesize them.

These famous essential amino acids are all present in products of animal origin, this is not the case for products of vegetable origin. Cereals are deficient in lysine and legumes are deficient in methionine.

Soy and quinoa are exceptions, as they contain all the essential amino acids.

Proteins are essential for growth, but also for the synthesis of enzymes, or protein hormones (insulin).

Plant-based steaks combining legumes and cereals make it possible to obtain a protein quality identical to that of meat.

source of iron

Iron is involved in the synthesis of red blood cells. The iron contained in plants called “non-heme iron” is less well absorbed than iron of animal origin “heme iron”.

To increase its absorption, the trick lies in combining these plants with ingredients rich in vitamin C.

Polyunsaturated fatty acids

Some vegetable steaks contain polyunsaturated fatty acids, the lipids being vegetable oils.

Omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids are involved in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases and AMD (age-related muscle degeneration), they would also be involved in the prevention of neurodegenerative diseases.

Source of calcium

Some vegetable steaks have interesting calcium levels, especially soy steaks.

As a reminder, calcium is a mineral involved in bone and dental growth, muscle contraction, conduction of nerve impulses. 99% of the calcium absorbed has a plastic role (growth) and 1% catalytic (chemical reactions).

A word from the dietitian-nutritionist

Plant-based steaks provide good quality protein and iron. Nevertheless, it is important to note that very often these steaks are ultra-processed products.

The latest studies have demonstrated a correlation between the consumption of ultra-processed products and the occurrence of chronic pathologies such as:

  • diabetes ;
  • cardiovascular illnesses.

You will need to read the ingredient list carefully.

  • The rule of thumb: the longer the list of ingredients, the lower the nutritional quality.
  • Prefer homemade vegetable steaks.

Vegetable steaks have various compositions, you will easily find them in supermarkets.

Vegetable Steak ID Card

  • Season: all year;
  • Color: depends on the ingredients that compose it;
  • Flavor: often flavored.

Highest in protein

You will need to be vigilant with the list of ingredients in order to choose a steak rich in protein. Ideally, opt for the soy steak or the steaks combining legumes and cereals.

Short ingredient list

For better nutritional quality, prefer steaks with a short list of ingredients.

Seitan steak: the good alternative

Seitan (wheat) steaks can be an alternative, the protein content is decent and they are rich in group B vitamins.

Homemade vegetable steaks

You can cook your homemade steaks from lentils, buckwheat, chickpeas, you will have the possibility of incorporating mushrooms, seasonal vegetables, raising them with aromatic herbs, spices. Homemade preparations allow a wider choice of ingredients and avoid the addition of additives.

Store well

Like all ultra-processed products, plant-based steaks have an expiry date, so it will be necessary to keep them in the refrigerator.

If you’ve opted for homemade vegetable steaks, store them in the fridge for up to 3 days.

With what to accompany a vegetable steak?

To accompany a salad

Vegetable steaks can accompany a green salad, vegetables, ratatouille.

For a veggie burger

You will have the possibility “to make burgers, the steak will be incorporated into burger bread, add green salad, sliced ​​red onions, cheese, tomato sauce.

Vegan steak fries

Like the beef steak, the vegetable steak can be served with fries.

Contraindications and allergies to vegetable steak

Some plant-based steaks made from wheat contain gluten, so they are not recommended for people with celiac disease or with gluten intolerance.

History and anecdotes


On June 30, 2022, a decree published in the official journal prohibits the names of steaks, sausages, bacon with vegetable products. At the end of July, suppression by the Council of State of the implementation of the decree.

Vegetable steaks can keep the name steak.

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