We love it when mainstream companies and known food makers embrace the meatless trend, since it's clearly done to bring more consumers into the plant-based movement. So when we saw the headline that Nestle was bringing out DiGiorno meatless pizza and Stouffer's lasagna as part of its next push, we were thrilled -- since most consumers trust these brands and will eat these meatless options from two of their favorite frozen food brands.

But then we noticed the cheese on the pizza and in the lasagna is still dairy and that makes it virtually impossible to scrape off the top of the pizza -- and thoroughly useless with the lasagna since the cheese is all throughout. So while we are happy for the vegetarian set or anyone trying to eat a more plant-based diet and embrace the trend toward plant protein, it defeats the purpose when the item is smothered with, or infused with, actual dairy cheese.

The  story was reported as a win for the meatless leaning public on Baking Business, 

And on CNET, which points out that the Awesome Grounds used in the new Stouffer's and DiGiorno products are made mainly from textured pea protein, a key ingredient in the Beyond Burger. The meatless grounds also include wheat gluten, canola oil, coconut oil and juice concentrates from fruits and vegetables; all-natural but the gluten-free set will want to avoid.

And interestingly the reports cite statistics that are positive when it comes to the public embracing plant-based eating. According to the press release, the company is responding to new consumer attitudes that are shifting away from meat and toward plant-based proteins. Nestle USA reports that a consumer survey they commissioned found that nearly half of consumers have either integrated plant-based meat into their diet or would consider doing so long-term. The survey also found that 3 in 10 people who have not yet tried plant-based meat would try it if they had the opportunity. We say: that's great news. Next time add a dairy-free option, and check as to whether the public is also avoiding dairy as well as gluten. Our bet: Even more people would bring these home if Nestle rolled out a cashew-nut cheese and a rice or corn or cauliflower-based crust. For our favorite frozen vegan pizzas check out The Beet Meter and our reviews here. 

Question: Would you try the new meatless DiGiorno pizzas and Stouffer's lasagna if it has dairy cheese? Or would you prefer it with non-dairy cheese? Please go on The Beet's FB page and take our poll


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