Greggs fans have given their verdicts on its hotly-anticipated vegan steak bake after they launched nationwide today with more than 200 queuing out the door desperate to try one.   

Frenzied pastry fiends in Newcastle lined up in the freezing cold last night to ensure they got their hands on the £1.55 Quorn-based treat. 

Other High Street restaurants have also jumped on the ‘Veganuary’ bandwagon, with KFC launching a no-chicken burger, Subway introducing a no-meatball marinara sub and McDonald’s offering a new vegan meal as they attempt to emulate the huge success of Greggs’ vegan sausage roll.  

Delighted fans bragged about their purchases on social media, with one writing on Twitter: ‘Vegan steak bake from Greggs is absolutely amazing I want another 20.’ 

Others were less convinced by the aesthetics, with one customer claiming it ‘looks like cat food’ but ‘tastes great’. 

The eagerly-anticipated steak bake is being rolled out at 1,300 stores today, selling out quickly at dozens of stores, and comes a year after the chain launched its famous vegan sausage roll. 

Greggs fans queued up outside bakeries in Newcastle last night to make sure they were the first to try their eagerly anticipated vegan steak bake

Frenzied pastry fiends lined up in the cold before sun rose in Newcastle yesterday evening to ensure they got their hands on the £1.55 quorn-based treat

Frenzied pastry fiends lined up in the cold before sun rose in Newcastle yesterday evening to ensure they got their hands on the £1.55 quorn-based treat

Newcastle city centre was packed with people on Wednesday night as they waited for Greggs to open

Newcastle city centre was packed with people on Wednesday night as they waited for Greggs to open 

Other High Street chains have jumped on the 'Veganuary' bandwagon, with KFC launching a no-chicken burger

Subway has introduced a no-meatball marinara sub

Other High Street chains have jumped on the ‘Veganuary’ bandwagon, with KFC launching a no-chicken burger (left) and Subway introducing a no-meatball marinara sub (right)

The vegan pastry is made up of 96 layers of no-butter puff pastry, Quorn, diced onion and gravy. 

Customers can search their location on the Greggs website to see if their local bakery is selling the new addition. 

Fans queued out the door for a special launch party held at a Greggs shop in Newcastle last night, when 1,000 fans were given the opportunity to enjoy a first taste of the bake before the rest of the country.

Selling like hot cakes! In Manchester and dozens of other bakeries, Greggs sold out of the vegan steak bake on the first day of sales today

Selling like hot cakes! In Manchester and dozens of other bakeries, Greggs sold out of the vegan steak bake on the first day of sales today 

Treats with limited edition packaging were also given away to the first 200 customers.  

Delighted fans bragged about their purchases on social media, with one writing on Twitter: 'Vegan steak bake from Greggs is absolutely amazing I want another 20.'

Delighted fans bragged about their purchases on social media, with one writing on Twitter: ‘Vegan steak bake from Greggs is absolutely amazing I want another 20.’

A Greggs fan called Katie tweeted: ‘Am I in the queue for the Greggs vegan steak bake launch in the freezing cold at 10pm? Of course I am.’ 

A Twitter user called Hannah posted a video of herself eating the new vegan treat with the caption: ‘Live action shot of me trying the Greggs vegan steak bake. I much prefer the vegan sausage roll.’ 

Another elated fan wrote: ‘I GOT A VEGAN STEAK BAKE FROM GREGGS HOLD ME.’

Someone else determined to get their hands on one wrote online: ‘Mission of the day is to get hold of the Greggs vegan steak bake.’ 

One happy customer took a picture of their vegan steak bake and put it on Twitter

One happy customer took a picture of their vegan steak bake and put it on Twitter 

Delighted fans in Newcastle, where Greggs first opened, bragged about their purchases on social media, where excitement has been building ahead of the big launch

Delighted fans in Newcastle, where Greggs first opened, bragged about their purchases on social media, where excitement has been building ahead of the big launch

Vegan Emma Phillips queued for around 20 minutes and said she ‘really liked’ the bake, adding it is ‘better than the vegan sausage roll’.

‘My son isn’t vegan and is always ready to criticise vegan food, but even he said he’d gladly buy that over the meat-based option,’ she told the PA news agency.

‘A launch like this is huge for the vegan movement… 30 years ago vegetarian wouldn’t have been mentioned on a menu, now we’re seeing a vegan logo on many.

‘The marketing raises the profile of the movement, which could lead people to making long-term changes in their own diets.’

Writing online ahead of the official launch yesterday, one excited fan commented: ‘Feel free to hit me up for any recipe ideas or advice. 

‘Veganism is one of the best things I ever did. Also Greggs Vegan Steak Bake coming soon, I’m so gassed.’

Another added: ‘Why isn’t Greggs vegan steak bake NOW?’  

The Greggs launch came as more than 300,000 people signed up to take part in Veganuary and forego all meat and animal-based food for the rest of the month, while plant-based diets have become increasingly popular in the past year – for both their health and environmental benefits.

KFC were also keen to tap into the vegan pound and released their own version of a vegan burger today, made with a Quorn fillet, lettuce and vegan mayonnaise.

Meanwhile, sandwich maker Subway has released a meatless meatball marinara – made with plant-based meat replacements, marinara sauce and vegan cheese.

This month’s launch of restaurant chain Frankie & Benny’s new Vegan menu has been backed by rock music legend Meat Loaf.  

Passionate pastry fans have gone wild online after Greggs unveiled their hotly anticipated Vegan Steak Bake, with the treat available in stores up-and-down the country from today

Passionate pastry fans have gone wild online after Greggs unveiled their hotly anticipated Vegan Steak Bake, with the treat available in stores up-and-down the country from today 

The baked treat follows up the hugely popular Vegan Sausage Roll, which was launched in January 2019 to critical acclaim

The baked treat follows up the hugely popular Vegan Sausage Roll, which was launched in January 2019 to critical acclaim 

What did customers in Manchester and Newcastle make of the vegan steak bake? 

Karen Blakeley, 56, Harpurhey: ‘I loved it, I am not a vegan but I like vegan food. I prefer this to the meat one.’

Jas Nisic, 25, Harpurhey: ‘It is good, I’ve been to Greggs before for the sausage rolls. I preferred this but I do love a good sausage roll.’ 

Danny Keenan, 44, Whitefield: ‘I thought I would give it a go and it’s very good. I am vegan and my daughter is vegetarian, so I’ve never actually had the meat version to compare it to.’

Jas Nisic (left) and her mother Karen Blakeley (right)

Jas Nisic (left) and her mother Karen Blakeley (right)

Danny Keenan, 44, from Whitefield

Steven Leech, 32, from Salford

Danny Keenan, 44, from Whitefield (left) and Steven Leech, 32, from Salford (right)

Steven Leech, 32, Salford: ‘I’m a vegetarian and I think it is great that places like Greggs are opening themselves up to new tastes. It was delicious. I will probably be back for one but maybe it’s not the best time to launch this for people trying to keep down their calories.’

Lainey Gauson, 31, Withington: ‘It is nice, I got the sausage roll last year. I don’t normally go to places like Greggs for food, but I come to try these things out.’ 

Lainey Gauson, 31, from Withington

Lainey Gauson, 31, from Withington

Veera Tammisto, 27, Salford: ‘It is good, I never used to go to places like this before. I originally became a vegan two years ago, at the time it was quite difficult. You couldn’t get much in normal places and you had to go online if I wanted meat replacements.’

Ella Crawford, 22, Spinningfields: ‘It is really good, it has got a good consistency to it. I have had the normal steak bake before, and the meat feels like it’s still there in this one.  

Paul McGuire, 34, Newcastle: ‘It just tastes like a steak bake. It’s not as runny as a meat steak bake. I like meat but I like this as well. I wouldn’t turn my nose up at it.’

Beth Purdy, 22, Newcastle: ‘It tastes like a normal steak bake and I love those ones too. It tastes exactly the same. If you gave me one of the other ones I don’t think I would be able to tell the difference.’

Jonny Raftery, 27 Gateshead: ‘It’s really nice. It’s basically the same as a steak bake. I’m a regular Greggs customer and I think if someone gave me this without telling me it was vegan I wouldn’t have been able to tell the difference.’

Jonny Raftery, 27, from Gateshead

Beth Purdy, 22, from Newcastle

Jonny Raftery, 27, from Gateshead (left) and Beth Purdy, 22, from Newcastle (right) both enjoyed the new steak bake

Doreen Renforth, 75, Gosforth: ‘They’re lovely. We love a steak bake from Greggs. They have a good selection of pasty options. It’s nice on match days when you see the dads, granddads and kids with their pasties on their way to St James Park. Maybe they will be having vegan steak bakes at the next one!’  

Raymond Renforth, 75: ‘I would buy it if they didn’t have any of the meat ones left. I do think it’s good that they have the option.’ 

Doreen and Raymond Renforth from Gosforth were pleasantly surprised by the pastry

Doreen and Raymond Renforth from Gosforth were pleasantly surprised by the pastry

Matt Jrmuz, 32, from Wickham

Thomas Potts, 26, from Heaton

Matt Jrmuz, 32, from Wickham (left) and Thomas Potts, 26, from Heaton (right) with their vegan steak bakes

Matt Jrmuz, 32, Wickham: ‘It’s got a really good taste. I would definitely buy it again. At £1.55 it’s not expensive. It’s really nice. I can tell it isn’t real meat but I still like it.’

Erin Shaw, 33, Gateshead: ‘It is tasty. I had not tried any of the vegan stuff at Greggs before but I would go back and get another one.’ 

Thomas Potts, 26, Heaton: ‘If all vegan products were like this then veganism is something I might consider.’

Tracey Halliwell, 55, Warwickshire: ‘They are okay. It doesn’t taste like beef and I can tell it is not real meat.’ 

Mike Halliwell, 53: ‘I think there is a push for people to have vegan products. There are Greggs all over the place, all over the country, giving people options. But I don’t think it is going to completely change society. It is all about being sensible with your diet.’

Paul McGuire, 34, from Newcastle said the vegan snack 'tastes like a steak bake' but isn't as runny as the meat version

Paul McGuire, 34, from Newcastle said the vegan snack ‘tastes like a steak bake’ but isn’t as runny as the meat version

Mike Halliwell, 53, from Warwickshire

Erin Shaw, 33, from Gateshead

Mike Halliwell, 53, from Warwickshire (left) and Erin Shaw, 33, from Gateshead (right)

The launches comes exactly a year after Greggs’ Vegan Sausage Roll which contributed to company sales rocketing up by 13.4 per cent within 12 months. 

Greggs has made a store finder so customers can find their nearest branch selling them.

They will be on sale at its remaining 700 of its 2,000 shops from January 16.

A Greggs spokesman said: ‘Greggs has finally put an end to months of speculation by confirming the drop of its Vegan Steak Bake which hits shops today. 

‘The new Vegan Steak Bake means that the UK’s vegans, flexitarians and Meat-Free Monday advocates can enjoy an alternative to one of Greggs’ iconic menu items.

‘The Vegan Steak Bake has been created to mirror some of the original Steak Bake’s classic features, including 96 layers of light and crisp puff pastry, but instead is made with Quorn pieces, diced onions and a gravy filling.’

They added: ‘Greggs’ Vegan Sausage Roll launched in January 2019 to critical acclaim – becoming one of its fastest selling products of the last six years.

‘The Greggs product development team has been working for months on the Vegan Steak Bake recipe, recruiting a whole panel of vegan and non-vegan taste testers to ensure its flavours hit the spot.’ 

Meanwhile Greggs chief executive Roger Whiteside said: ‘Our Vegan Sausage Roll launch was a huge success and we’ve been working tirelessly to expand our vegan friendly offering. 

‘And provide more delicious savoury food on-the-go options for people looking to reduce their meat intake.

‘The launch of our Vegan Steak Bake is another key milestone on our journey to become our customers’ favourite for food-on-the-go.’

A photo of the new steak bake price sign was leaked last Friday but Greggs remained tight-lipped and wouldn’t comment on speculation of when the bake would launch. 

However, it put out a teaser on its Twitter feed on Monday saying there was just two days until a big vegan announcement.   

The high street goes vegan! From a no-chicken KFC burger to a no-meatball Subway, but will YOU be reaching for plant-based treats? 

High street fast food chains are rolling out hotly-anticipated vegan alternatives as Veganuary gets into full swing. 

Subway 

Subway has launched a vegan version of its iconic meatball marinara sandwich. 

The sandwich is a plant-based take on Subway’s signature meatball marinara, which is filled with meatballs, cheese and oozing tomato sauce.

Vegan customers across the UK can now enjoy the sub thanks to a tweaked recipe including vegan cheese and ‘meatless’ meatballs. 

The meatless marinara is available at stores across the UK from today. 

Other vegan options from Subway include the Vegan Sub, Vegan Salad and the cravable Hash Browns.      

Colin Hughes, Country Director Subway UK and Ireland, said: ‘We’re always shaking up our menu at Subway as we are constantly innovating. 

‘Our guests wanted a meatless version of our iconic Sub, so we made it for them! 

Subway has launched a vegan version of its iconic meatball marinara sandwich (pictured) as it becomes the latest chain to jump on the 'Vegananuary' bandwagon

Subway has launched a vegan version of its iconic meatball marinara sandwich (pictured) as it becomes the latest chain to jump on the ‘Vegananuary’ bandwagon 

‘The Meatless Meatball Marinara is equally as delicious as the original, and a tempting choice for all our guests, whether they are looking for a plant-based alternative, or simply want to enjoy something a little different.’ 

Its release follows a successful trial last year and coincides with the release of other plant-based offerings from food heavyweights including Greggs, KFC and McDonald’s as the high street looks to cash-in on the rise of vegan diets.

KFC 

On Thursday KFC released a vegan burger, made with a Quorn fillet, lettuce and vegan mayonnaise. 

It uses the same blend of 11 herbs and spices as the chain does for its chicken options. KFC bosses claim it boast the same flavour, but with no meat.   

Ira Dubinsky, Innovation Director at KFC in the UK and Ireland said: ‘The Colonel was all about welcoming everyone to his table – now vegans, flexitarians and our fried chicken fans can all enjoy the taste of our Original Recipe together. 

‘We’ve worked hard to perfect the flavour and make a Vegan Burger the Colonel would be proud of. It’s the same flavour of KFC, just with zero chicken.’  

KFC's vegan offering, pictured above, looks like a fried chicken burger but the fillet is replaced with Quorn

KFC’s vegan offering, pictured above, looks like a fried chicken burger but the fillet is replaced with Quorn

McDonalds 

For flexitarians, vegetarians, vegans or those looking to make more meat-free choices during ‘Veganuary’, McDonald’s will be offering their first ever fully vegan meal from today. 

The new Veggie Dippers – which have been approved by The Vegetarian Society and certified as vegan compliant as well as gluten free – are available as both an adult meal and Happy Meal. 

They are made with red pepper, rice, sundried tomato pesto and split peas surrounded by light and crispy breadcrumbs. 

The dippers are now a permanent menu item so will remain available even after ‘Veganuary’ ends.

For four Veggie Dippers, fries and a soft drink the RRP is £4.99, while the veggie dippers Happy Meal will be £2.99.  Alternatively, the four Veggie Dippers can be purchased separately for £3.29. 

The new McDonald's Veggie Dippers (pictured) - which have been approved by The Vegetarian Society and certified as vegan compliant - are available as both an adult meal and Happy Meal

The new McDonald’s Veggie Dippers (pictured) – which have been approved by The Vegetarian Society and certified as vegan compliant – are available as both an adult meal and Happy Meal

 



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