You may think going vegan means cutting all of your favorite sinful foods out of your diet. But as it turns out, there are quite a few foods you wouldn’t expect that fall under the vegan umbrella. With help from Spooniversity, we take a look at 15 foods you probably never knew were vegan. (The food on page 15 was certainly a surprise to us.)
That’s right. While eating a whole sleeve in one sitting isn’t good for your waistline, they do still fit into the vegan category because they don’t contain any animal byproducts. You just can’t cross-contaminate them with milk — that defeats the whole purpose.
2. Jell-O pudding mix
This dessert mix is quite the health-conscious helper. In addition to being vegan, Jell-O mixes are also soy-free and gluten-free. Just stick to vegan milk the next time you whip up some pudding or pie filling and you’ll have a tasty vegan-friendly dessert in no time.
3. Taco Bell bean burrito
Remember, food can’t have any type of animal byproduct in it for it to be considered vegan. Since that includes milk, cheese is also a no-no. But as long as you get your bean burrito without cheese, you’re good to go. Peta2 recommends ordering a side of guacamole for dipping.
Next: Speaking of burritos and tacos …
4. Sofritas tacos
“Our sofritas is vegan and vegetarian approved,” Chipotle’s website boasts. “Vegans should avoid our meats, shredded Monterey Jack cheese, queso, sour cream, and chipotle-honey vinaigrette. Our tortillas, vegetables, rice, beans, salsas, chips, and guacamole, are vegetarian and vegan.”
5. Hershey’s chocolate syrup
Sure, it’s full of high-fructose corn syrup. But this infamous and delicious chocolate topping is, in fact, a vegan food. Keep your whole dessert vegan-friendly by putting chocolate syrup on top of dairy-free ice cream or stir it into almond milk.
6. Betty Crocker Bac-O bits
“While Betty Crocker brand Bac-Os are advertised as bacon bits, they do not actually contain any pork products,” Powered-by-Produce.com says. The website tells us McCormick Bac’n Pieces are also pork-free and therefore vegan-friendly.
“Instead of using dairy, the brand uses hydrogenated palm oil because it has a longer shelf life,” MartiniHouse.com tells us. “And because of that simple switch, their crescent rolls are accidentally vegan!” The site also gives some good ideas for stuffing your crescent rolls to make them even more delicious.
8. Ritz crackers
You may think this tasty snack gets its flavor from being packed with butter. But like crescent rolls, Ritz crackers are accidentally vegan because it contains vegetable oil instead of butter. Keep this snack vegan-friendly by pairing it with soy cheese or a dairy-free dip.
9. Unfrosted Pop-Tarts
Not all Pop-Tarts are created equal, therefore not all kinds are vegan-friendly. But the versions that aren’t topped with frosting — strawberry, blueberry, and sugar-cinnamon — fit the bill. Unfortunately, the maple-bacon variety isn’t vegan.
10. Lindt dark chocolate bars
“Described as something more than a food but less than a drug, most dark and high-quality chocolate is completely vegan, as it usually contains a high amount of cocoa and no milk or dairy products,” UrbanVegan.net tells us. Try 70-percent dark and up.
Bust out the Goya — this
12. Nature Valley crunchy granola bars
Like other foods on this list, not every version is vegan-friendly. But if you grab an Apple Crisp, Peanut Butter, Cinnamon, Pecan Crunch, Roasted Almond, or Maple Brown Sugar granola bar, you’ll be enjoying a crunchy energizing snack that is also vegan.
13. Krispy Kreme fruit pies
Their signature donuts may not be vegan-friendly, but the fruit pies you can buy at your local grocery store are. But as OneGreenPlanet.org points out:
“If your idea of vegan doesn’t include high-fructose corn syrup, artificial coloring, modified corn starch
14. Teddy Grahams
Only the chocolate chip and cinnamon versions of these little graham cracker-cookie hybrids are vegan. But they also contain other forms of goodness. “They are a tasty source of calcium and iron,” proprofs.com tells us.
15. Speculoos cookies
That’s right. This Belgian cookie made popular in the states by Trader Joe’s are a vegan food — even though not every brand of speculoos cookies fit the vegan-friendly criteria. Take a cue from Spooniversity and dip these spicy cookies in almond butter.
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