Crickets As a New Alternative to Meat

If you're looking for interesting alternatives to tempt your palate, giving crickets a try might be the perfect quirky option.

Bitty Foods founders Megan Miller and Leslie Ziegler are on a quest to sneak an unusual ingredient into an American household favorite: they're turning out chocolate chip cookies made with cricket flour. Containing a mix of cassava, coconut and powdered cricket, each cookie results in a total of eight crickets to pack a protein punch. Each cup of Bitty Food’s baking flour includes 28g of protein, twice as much as wheat.

Miller wonders why no one was utilizing this “existing biomass of wonderful, high quality protein on the Earth--organic crickets," especially since they are praised for their sustainability and health benefits. They provide five times the amount of magnesium and three times as much iron as beef, and even include all nine essential amino acids a person needs. Additionally, crickets grow from egg to adult in just seven weeks, cutting down not only on resources used but the amount of waste produced as well. This makes them much more sustainable than conventional poultry farms, which author Clint Carter refers to as “nuclear waste dumps.”

Ziegler explains, “Eighty percent of the world’s population eats insects.” However, it’s the visual and often emotional barrier that needs to be overcome with eating insects for most Americans, which is why companies such as Bitty Foods is putting bugs into cookies and bars, products we all know and love. So next time you're looking for a great source of protein, maybe pick up a box of cricket cookies.

Written by Donna Chen