Drew Barrymore Swears By This Chicken Made From Fungi

As texturally divisive as mushrooms are in the culinary world, it shouldn't come as a surprise that they make excellent meat substitutes. Each item on our list of the 10 best substitutes for mushrooms has a similarly sinewy texture or umami flavor. Now, both vegans and omnivores are recognizing the ability of mushrooms to imitate the taste and feel of chicken (per The Spruce Eats). In fact, certain mushrooms inherently exhibit the same texture as fried chicken or pulled pork when prepared in a similar way.

People from all walks of life are embracing the power of the shroom to reduce their environmental impact and make a more healthy choice. A study published in the Journal, Nature, has indicated that a large portion of the rainforest could be preserved if more people swapped out meat for fungi. Moreover, scientists determined that if consumers replaced just one in five meals containing meat with mushroom-based dishes, they could decrease deforestation levels by half in just 30 years.

In a recent Delish article, Drew Barrymore came to bat for mushroom-based meat substitutes, testifying that there's a specific variety she simply can't stop eating.

Barrymore touts the taste of fungi

Actor and cookbook author Drew Barrymore has an adoration for a certain food, according to Delish, that tastes just like chicken but is something totally different. It's fungi. The celebrity may be slightly biased because she acts as the company's "Chief Mom Officer," but she swears her love for Quorn's Meatless Nuggets is as real as the company's chicken is fake.

The nuggets, which are available at most grocery stores, are made of mycoprotein, which is an ingredient Quorn uses in its meatless products to mimic the taste and texture of meat. This ingredient is composed of the fungi Fusarium venenatum, which gets fermented to produce what Barrymore considers the vegan equivalent of chicken.

The "50 First Dates" star also stated that Quorn's mission was not to convert everyone to a vegetarian lifestyle but to help them create a nice "balance" in their diet. For those who don't want to opt for a store-bought option, many food bloggers agree that oyster mushrooms create a similar effect.