Oregon State researchers say that a new strain of seaweed they recently patented tastes just like bacon when it is cooked.

Chris Langdon, one of the researchers, said his team started growing the new strain when they were trying to identify a good source of food for edible sea snails. Langdon realized he had something potentially great on his hands when a colleague visited his office and saw the seaweed growing.

The seaweed grows quickly, looks like lettuce, has twice the nutritional value of kale—oh, and it tastes JUST LIKE BACON.

When you fry it, which I have done, it tastes like bacon, not seaweed. And it's a pretty strong bacon flavor.

Yes, you heard right—something that looks like lettuce and has twice the nutritional value of some other healthy food tastes just like one of the most celebrated foods in the history of eating.

No U.S. companies are currently growing this seaweed for people to eat, but apparently Europeans have been aware of this amazing stuff for centuries.

There is uncertainty that commercializing the bacon-seaweed will be profitable, but some believe it would be of interest in the vegan/vegetarian markets.

Hey—I'm just here for the healthy bacon.

[via BusinessInsider]