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There are more and more vegan food products becoming available all the time, making eating without putting animals though horrific suffering, easier than ever. Supermarkets are always adding to their ranges, plus there are other high street shops and online retailers who sell different ranges of vegan food products.
In addition, there are websites to help you find out what vegan food products are available, and where you can get them.
Accidentally Vegan Food products In Supermarkets
Accidentally vegan food products refers to items of food that were not produced with being vegan in mind, and that are not marketed as vegan foods, but are vegan. Because they are not marketed, or marked, as vegan, you may well be surprised that some of these products are vegan.
Please be aware that palm oil is an ingredient of some of these foods and this can be a grey area for vegans. This is because palm oil itself is vegan, but the production of it is responsible for the destruction of habitat of endangered species, and the death of those, and other, animals. Unfortunately palm oil is in many products, although some products claim theirs is from sustainable sources.
Companies Funding Animal Research
Another consideration for vegans is whether they buy vegan products that are owned by companies who fund animal experimentation. Vegans will not do this.
You can find out which companies fund testing on animals on the Ethical Shopping page.
Image: More foods you already consume than you may realise are vegan.
Where To Find Accidentally Vegan Foods
There are many accidentally vegan foods found in supermarkets, smaller grocery stores, and online stores.
For a list of US accidentally vegan food, click here.
My Vegan Supermarket is a fabulous website that contains a large number of vegan products in UK supermarkets. It does not list all products available, but it does have many. To get a fuller picture of vegan products available in UK supermarkets, it is necessary to look at other sources too, such as this list, and Peta’s list of 44 Accidentally Vegan Snack Foods. These lists contain mainly brand named products.
In addition, The Vegan Society provides complete lists of vegan food items from UK supermarkets, and includes own brands.
My Vegan Food Product Reviews
I decided to change from a vegetarian diet to a vegan one because I love animals and do not want to fund cruelty towards them. Going vegetarian took a large step towards that, but I was still unhappy that I was funding the cruel dairy and egg industries.
I started by trying all the vegan food products I could find in my local supermarkets and other shops. I posted pictures of all the vegan food products I had tried on social media, along with an honest account of what I thought about them. Some of the products I have found horrible, but others I have found even nicer than their egg/dairy laden equivalent.
I purchased more and more vegan food products. Some I ordered online, others I bought from shops such as the Eigth Day Co-op in Manchester, and The Incredible Nutshell in Sheffield. I only wish there were such shops near where I live!.
Vegan Food Reviewed Website
A website grew out of the Facebook group. It is called VeganFoodReviewed.com. On it, you can see many vegan food products, what I thought of them, and where you can get them. It will give you some ideas about what is available out there for U.K. vegans. I continue to add new products as I purchase and try them. Going vegan is getting easier and easier as more vegan food products are becoming available.
I definitely have favourites out of all the vegan food products I have tried, which I keep buying again and again and always have in my house. Some of them I buy in bulk because it is cheaper. See some of my favourite products below, but don’t be put off buying vegan products by the prices below, as many of them can be found cheaper if you have time to shop around. Many of the food products are available in supermarkets.
Having such a sweet tooth, I found most vegan chocolate not sweet enough. But then I found Vivani (the smaller version of the bar) or iChoc White Nougat Crisp. I do prefer it when it is slightly melted though. This may sound a little strange, but I usually sit on it, using my heat to soften it up!
So Free Chocolate Orange Spread from Plamil:
This is the closest vegan chocolate taste I have found to Terry’s Chocolate Orange. With being a spread, the texture is softer, but the taste is extremely close indeed. I love it, it is actually sweet enough for me, which most vegan chocolate product are not. I wish it came in bar or confectionery form too, tasting exactly the same, and with the lovely spread as the filling.
This is definitely the nearest vegan taste I can find to Nutella. It tastes just about exactly the same as Nutella to me – nearer than any vegan chocolate I have tried, including Vego bars, which other people told me tasted like Nutella. It is perfect in sweetness and I absolutely love it. I wish it came in bar or other confectionary form too, with thi squishy spread in the middle. It is more expensive than the chocolate orange spread, above, probably because it has no palm oil in it to help save the rainforests, but it is so tasty, it is worth the money.
I find the toffee Flavdrops are delicious in hot drinks, in vegan milk, smoothies, and other things. Please note that the Strawberry and Raspberry flavours of the same brand are not vegan, as they contain the red coloured carmine food colouring, which consists of crushed beetles.
I have tried most of the available milk alternatives and my favourite is Alpro (also called Provamel) Cashew milk. It taste most like cows milk out of the ones I have tried, and also has the most subtle taste. It is nice to drink on its own and nice in anything else.
This is my second favourite vegan milk alternative, as it reminds me of the taste of rice pudding. It also tastes lovely and creamy in cereal, tea and coffee, etc. Unless I drink the milk on its own, I cannot taste the rice flavour. There is also a vanilla flavour available.
Alpro do quite a few products I like. This includes their 4 packs of lovely creamy vanilla dessert pots…
This comes in a carton, but it tastes the same as the vanilla dessert to me.
These dark chocolate desserts are delicious (much nicer than their Smooth Chocolate flavour)…
With all the Alpro products, I cannot detect any “woody” kind of taste that I sometimes can with soya milk products. I would never be able to tell that they were not made with cows milk.
Non Vegan Ingredients To Watch Out For
In ingredients lists on food packages it is sometimes not clear what is vegan and what isn’t, unless you know the terms used. Here are a few to look out for:
- Cochineal, Carmine or anything that sounds like it is a red food coloring made from ground-up beetles.
- Casein and similar-sounding substances are milk proteins.
- Collagen and keratin are rendered slaughterhouse proteins.
- Gelatin is derived from the skins or bones of animals.
- Lactose is a sugar extracted from milk.
- Lard and tallow are both fancy names for animal fat.
- Whey is a milk-based byproduct of cheese making.
- Glycerine, lactic acid, mono or diglycerides, and stearic acid can be produced from slaughterhouse fat, but they could also be vegan.
Other ingredients to look out for that MAY be animal derived: Lactoperoxidase,
PEG-100 Stearate Carmine,
Sodium Chondroitin Sulphate,
If you do not want products with palm oil in, there are many names that can be used for palm oil – over 200! You can see these names here.
Image: Orangutan Foundation International lists the most common names for palm oil
Some products are vague and only list vegetable oil. This could be palm oil, but may be rapeseed or other oils. However, if the label states vegetable oil and then goes on to state the amount of saturated fat, it will be either palm kernel oil, palm oil or coconut, as other vegetable oils are not saturated.
Please note: Palm Sugar is a different species of palm and is not palm oil. Vegetable gum is not palm oil derived. Vitamin D can be animal derived, but may not be.