- Food and Cooking
Hidden Animal Ingredients
Is It Vegetarian?
I have been a vegetarian for 14 years now, and I can still be surprised by "hidden" animal ingredients. As a matter of fact, I just learned today that "gum base" in many gums is not vegetarian. Although, I do try to read lables and ask questions when dining out, I find that it is much easier to just eat whole natural foods that I prepare myself. It's generally healthier, to boot! :)
Hidden Animal Ingredients List
There are many alternative names for things like milk and eggs and other non-vegan food components. These are just a few examples:
- Casein - a class of milk proteins often found in items marked 'non-dairy'
- Ghee - a common milk derivative
- Albumen - protein found in egg whites
- Cochineal/Carmine - a coloring agent made from ground up beetles
- Oleic acid - fat from sheep or cattle
- Rennin/Rennet - enzymes from a calf's stomach
- Calcium Stearate - a mineral usually derived from hogs and cattle
- Gelatin - protein from animal bones, cartilage, tendons, and skin
- Glycerides (mono/di/tri) - glycerol from animal fats
- Stearic acid - animal fats and oils
- Lecithin - phospholipids often from animal tissues and eggs
- Pepsin - enzymes gathered from pigs stomachs
If you're thinking that a trip to the grocery store just got a lot more complicated, don't worry; you'll soon get the hang of it, and your shopping time will decrease. It's a good idea to take along a more complete list of animal ingredients with you on your first few forays to the grocery store as a vegan.
Animal Ingredients A to Z is the bible for vegetarians, vegans, and caring consumers. More and more, we find our everyday foods containing peculiar -ingredients—many of which are animal derived. As well as a comprehensive listing of animal ingredients, this easy-to-navigate guide contains supplemental information on vegan nutrition, food alternatives, and contact information for animal advocacy groups. Carol Adams, author of The Sexual Politics of Meat and Bruce Friedrich, director of Vegan Outreach at PETA, offer introductions to this newly expanded edition. Finally, consumers can brave the labels at their local market with confidence.
You've heard it's made of horse hooves, perhaps. But it's actually made from the connective tissues of just about any animal. So it's not meat, per se, it's the stuff boiled down from every part of the animal you wouldn't eat if you did eat meat. So, no more Jell-O, right? Yes, but gelatin pops up all over the place. Here's a list to get you started.
- Some dairy products such as ice cream, sour cream, cream cheese, cottage cheese and yogurt.
- Some frostings and most "frosted" products such as Pop-Tarts.
- Candies such as gummy products (but not my beloved Jujyfruits), jelly beans, Skittles and Starburts, candy corn, and even Altoids.
- Marshmallows (but not marshmallow crÃ¨me) and items that contain marshmallows such as a Southern favorite, Moon Pies and breakfast cereals with "marshmallow bits" or frosting.
- Jell-O, gelatin and some pudding mixes as well as some jams, jellies, and "fruit snacks."
Harvest Direct Soy Pudding Mixes Vegan and Vegetarian Cake Mix
(Banana, Chocolate, French Vanilla, Lemon Creme)
(Available via Dixie Diners' Club)
Dr. Oetker Simple Organics
- Pudding/Pie Filling Mix (Chocolate, Coconut, Mocha, Vanilla)
(avaialable via Vegan Essentials)
Lieber's Unflavored Jel
Vegan and Vegetarian Baking Mixes
(avaialable via Vegan Essentials)
Natural Desserts Gluten-Free Vegan Jel Dessert
(available via Vegan Essentials)
- Vegan Chocolate Mousse Mix
- Vegan Custard Mix
- Many medicines and vitamins, particularly those in capsule or "gelcap" form contain gelatin.
- Some energy and diet bars (though some may list gelatin as "hydrolyzed collagen") as well as some energy/performance drinks.
- A few margarines including the fat-free version of "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter" (try Earth Balance, instead). Interestingly, the regular version of "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter" doesn't have gelatin.
- Some pre-made guacamole (really, you shouldn't be eating this stuff anyway - it's mostly filler and little avocado).
- Planters Dry Roasted Peanuts and other roasted nuts (but not all Planters nut products).
- Some soups and sauces.
- via Almost Vegetarian
iPhone App Scans Ingredient Label for Hidden Animal Products & Ingredients
Check the Vegetarian status of food additives using your iPhone 3GS Camera!
Vegetarian Scanner is a one of kind app that will scan ingredient labels of food products and automatically tell you the vegetarian statuses of the food additives contained in the product.
Vegetarian Scanner takes a photo of the ingredients label on a product, recognizes the food additive numbers using text recognition technology and checks the additives in our vegetarian database to determine whether or not they are vegetarian.
Vegetarian Scanner also lets you browse through and search our database of food additives when you need to look up additives in a hurry or if you are using an iPod Touch, iPhone 2G or 3G.
Info on the Quiz Above
Take the quiz before you read this! No cheating :)
Bacos contain no animal products - they're vegan! Bacos Nutiritional Information
Marshmallows contain gelatin. However, there are Vegan Marshmallows.
McDonald's French Fries
McDonald's USA - French Fries Ingredients they contain natural beef flavor.
Dannon (and most other brands) Yogurt
"Gelatin gives consistency and texture to certain varieties of yogurt. DANNON uses kosher gelatin, and DANNON products are made with gelatin derived from cattle hide." via Yogurt Ingredients (pdf)
Stonyfield yogurt is the only widely distributed yogurt with no gelatin, that I know of. All of the products they offer are organic, and the company is committed to healthy food, healthy people, a healthy planet, and healthy business. Stonyfield Farm Products
What is Fluff made from? Fluff is vegetarian but not vegan due to egg whites.
Planters Dry Roasted Peanuts
Planters Dry Roasted Peanuts Ingredients they contain gelatin - why?
An email response from J&D's, the makers of Baconnaise: "None of the flavors is sourced from animals or animal by-products. All of our products are vegetarian and some are even vegan to see a full product list and ingredients go to http://www.jdfoods.net/"
Act II Microwave Popcorn