The fast-food chains are paving the way for plant-based options at any time of day.


If you pay attention to the media, or, basically, don't live under a rock, chances are you've recently seen names like Impossible Burger and Beyond Burger popping up everywhere—and for good reason. Climate change is causing people to rethink their diet choices, which means going vegetarian or full-out vegan. At the very least, many are cutting back on meat. Still, many more are crushed at the idea of giving up the protein-packed food group. Enter: plant-based burgers. Designed to taste like real meat, each patty uses a whole slew of different ingredients—including mung beans, soy, and beet powder for color. According to loyal fans, these burgers really do taste like meat.

Food chains are jumping on the bandwagon, which is where Hardee's and Carl's Jr. come into play. The restaurants are owned by the same company, CKE Restaurants, which is one of the largest groups to partner with Beyond Meat—the tastemaker behind the Beyond Burger.

Carl's Jr. Beyond BBQ Cheeseburger (3)
Credit: Carl's Jr.

Carl's Jr. kicked things off in 2018 with the wildly popular Beyond Famous Star, a meatless version of the most popular menu item. Now, Carl's Jr. is pairing the Beyond Burger with another classic sandwich—the BBQ Cheeseburger.

This new dish has everything you love about BBQ burgers, from tangy-sweet sauce to crispy onion rings to melty cheese, but you can keep your conscience when you eat it. Plus, you might not even realize it's not actually meat. Carl's Jr. has sold over 4.5 million Beyond Famous Star burgers, and with the jam-packed flavor lineup, it's safe to say the Beyond BBQ Cheeseburger will garner just as much support.

When you're craving a meatless morning meal, Hardee's is hoping to have you covered. Beginning October 16, the restaurant is testing Beyond Meat options in two locations: Raleigh, NC and Kansas City, MO. If you're in one of those two spots, lucky you—you get to try the new Beyond Breakfast Sausage Biscuit. Rather than a meatless burger, this item stacks a meatless sausage patty on Hardee's made-from-scratch biscuits.

Credit: Hardee's

Hardee's is also introducing their own meatless burger—the Beyond Thickburger, which piles all your favorite classic toppings on a toasted bun. With the burger costing just $5.99 and the biscuit only $2.99, there's no excuse not to try plant-based meat.

Another extra incentive: On October 28, Hardee's locations in those two cities are doling out Beyond sammies for free, as long as you purchase a large drink. Head over in the morning to sample the sausage, or make your way for lunch or dinner to try the burger. But hurry up, because the plant-based products are there for a limited time.

Whether you stop at Carl's Jr. or Hardee's (or both!), you'll be helping the planet without sacrificing flavor—and that goes above and beyond. Order up!