From crumpets drenched in (vegan butter) to your favourite doorstop sandwich, bread is not only a staple food in most daily diets, it’s also a favourite comfort food. So, if you’re considering converting to plant-based eating, you’ve probably given more than a passing consideration to this question – can vegans eat bread?
Here we talk vegan bread and what common bread ingredients could catch you out.
From crusts brushed with butter to sweet, fluffy breads that often contain egg, there are lots of animal-derived ingredients to look out for in bread. Sometimes it’s blatantly clear a loaf isn’t going to fit into your plant-based diet. For example, flavour additions such as bacon, cheese and honey are usually added to the title on packaging and marked clearly in the ingredients. But it’s the cryptic sounding additives and preservatives that aren’t vegan approved that can be harder to spot.
These milk proteins are sometimes added to bread products to increase protein content, lengthen shelf life and sometimes for flavour purposes.
This amino acid is sometimes used in bread as a softening agent. One source is poultry feathers.
These fatty acids are emulsifiers. They change the texture of bread and help preserve moisture. Although they’re often a derivative of soybean oil, they can also come from animal fats.
This is an emulsifier used to improve texture and help preserve moisture. Leithin can come from plants but it could also be from egg yolks.
|Bread||Is it a vegan bread?|
|Ciabatta||Usually (except ciabatta al latte which contains milk)|
|Rye||Occasionally contains milk and eggs|
|Crumpets||Usually (when shop bought)|
|Muffins||No. Look out for butter|
|Brioche||No. Contains eggs and butter.|
The short answer is yes.
So, if you’re considering veganism but don’t want to give up your bakery habit, it will be a relief to hear most breads are naturally vegan.
However, this is not to say that you shouldn’t check the ingredients carefully. Some breads contain non-vegan friendly ingredients to achieve a certain texture, to add extra flavour or to extend shelf life. As well as the obvious eggs and dairy products (that should be clearly labelled) look out for more cryptic additives and preservatives that could be animal derived.
Last updated: 24 July 2020