Americans Expected to Eat 160 Million Vegan Wings on Super Bowl Sunday

|Updated Feb 11, 2022
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Super Bowl Sunday is here and as the Bengals and the Rams prepare for the final face-off of the season, Americans are gearing up to celebrate the unofficial feasting holiday. But this year the Big Game Day spread is going to look a little different if predictions hold true. Instead of the traditional nachos, dips, and wings, there will be all that and vegan wings on the table.

A new report estimates that some 160 million vegan wings will be consumed before the final down of Super Bowl LVI, according to Compassion In World Farming (CIWF). As more people are making the shift towards plant-based alternatives, the traditional chicken wing is getting benched in favor of a new crop of plant-based wings. The group estimates that 10 million Americans will decide to purchase and eat (or cook from scratch) vegan wings instead.

Compassion in World Farming conducted the report based on the current estimates of vegans, vegetarians, and flexitarians within the United States. With nearly 100 million Americans tuning into the Super Bowl this year, the organization believes that a significant portion will defer to the sustainable alternative. The data notes that nearly a third of Americans have adopted flexitarian, or mostly vegetarian, diets in recent years and that approximately 6 percent of Americans currently identify as vegan.

“Every year we’re told how many animal-based chicken wings will be eaten during the Super Bowl,” US Executive Director of Compassion in World Farming Ben Williamson said in a statement. “But one of the fastest-growing food trends is the increasing popularity of healthy and humane plant-based versions of classic American foods, which taste identical to the animal variety. So, we decided to estimate how many football fans will be eating compassionately next Sunday.”

Typically, the Super Bowl is ranked with Thanksgiving as one of the most meat-heavy days of the year. Last year, Americans consumers nearly 1.4 billion chicken wings, putting high strain on the animal agriculture industry and greatly increasing the environmental and ethical harm in the industry. Currently, the price of animal-based wings is also skyrocketing as market demand over recent years has caught up to the poultry sector.

The price surge will also encourage Super Bowl viewers to look for cheaper and more accessible alternatives. Recent data from Wells Fargo found that the cost of meat is up approximately 20 percent this year. Beyond price, the plant-based chicken options produce 43 percent less greenhouse gas emissions than conventional chicken.

“Plant-based meat products are now more widely available than ever before, online and in your local supermarket,” Williamson said. “There’s never been a better time to replace your meat made from animals, with meat made from plants—for your health and for the sake of the planet.”

There’s Plenty of Plant-Based Chicken to Go Around

Recently, Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) announced the largest plant-based chicken debut that people had seen. The fast-food giant released its Beyond Chicken Tenders to nearly 4,000 locations nationwide. The plant-based meat is made with Beyond Meat. Customers can stop at KFC locations all over the United States to get 6 or 12-piece tender meals for the Super Bowl watch parties.

Likewise in the retail sector, the up-and-coming vegan meat company LikeMeat just launched its signature plant-based buffalo wings at 3,600 Walmarts nationwide. The new Like Chick’n Wings will be sold in one-pound family packs nationwide, giving consumers an accessible and affordable plant-based option.

Looking for more plant-based chicken? Check out The Beet’s Beet Meters to find the best vegan chicken to try this weekend.

The Surprising Reasons these Five Country Singers Went Meat-Free

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1. Carrie Underwood Loved Her Family's Farm Animals

Seven-time Grammy Award winner Carrie Underwood has been hailed for her “enormous” vocal range. When it comes to her diet, Underwood’s a fan of breakfast burritos and lots of tofu. She doesn’t shy away from the carbs, either. According to Cheat Sheet, one of her favorite snacks is a toasted English muffin with peanut butter.

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2. Blake Shelton Wants to Keep Up With His Older Girlfriend

Singer, songwriter, and “The Voice” coach, Blake Shelton, 43, has been working to stay fit recently with help from his long-time love, Gwen Stefani, who is a vegetarian and told him to get off the meat if he wants to feel fitter and lose some weight. Shelton has been trying to keep up with Stefani's impressive fitness level, according to an interview Stefani gave this fall. The former No Doubt singer and Hollaback girl is a longtime vegetarian, eats a mostly vegan diet, and is super fit-- and at 50, looks younger than her years. A source told Gossipcop, “Gwen’s told him the way to lose it is to stay the hell away from meat and bad carbs.” We're rooting for him!

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3. Shania Twain Has the Key to Gorgeous Skin

The best-selling female country music singer in history isn’t buying any expensive steak dinners after a performance. The “Queen of Country Pop” has sold more than 100 million records but says she keeps her meat-free diet simple. She is both vegetarian and eats very little dairy -- though at times has said she does eat eggs.


4. Annette Conlon, Folk Artist with a Passion

Americana singer and songwriter Annette Conlon is also a passionate vegan. She started “The Compassionette Tour,” in an effort to bring compassion, social consciousness, human interaction, and animal issues to a mainstream audience.

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5. Johnny Cash, Walked the Vegan Line Late in Life

The Man in Black is synonymous with country music, even nearly two decades after his death (1932-2003), probably in part because of the biopic about his life starring vegan actor Joaquin Phoenix. Ask any die-hard country music fan (or your dad, for that matter) and they will tell you that Johnny Cash was one of the best-selling musicians of all-time. His scores of hits include “I Walk the Line” and "Hurt" "A Boy Named Sue" and dozens of others. Cash himself was believed to have lived meat-free later in life to help combat some health issues. At Johnny Cash’s Kitchen and Saloon in Nashville, you can also load up on the meat-free dishes as the restaurant boasts a fully stacked veggie menu that includes greens, sweet potato mash, and fried okra.