Garlic bread without butter; Cream filling without cream; could you be eating vegan without even realizing it?
Non-vegans might raise a quizzical eyebrow at some of the products that fall into the 'accidentally vegan' category, but for those who choose to eat a diet free from animal products it is an unexpected bonus when walking down the supermarket aisle.
Not many 'accidentally vegan' products are labeled as such. In some cases this is because companies cannot guarantee what has churned through the industrial sized blenders or baked in the supersized ovens before the 'accidentally vegan' products had their turn in the production process. Companies may also refuse to guarantee whether additives sourced down the supply chain are of plant or animal origin.
Most food labels are very clear and even some have a vegan symbol. However, ingredients do tend to change and companies change their ingredients without informing the public.
Here are six 'ninja vegan' products that may surprise you…
Milk's favorite cookie is sandwiched with a ‘vanilla cream’ filling that contains absolutely no dairy. So stock up the cookie jar and skip the dunking. Oreos are a favorite of many but 'accidentally vegan' product which many use in cupcakes too. If you have a sweet tooth, Arnott's strawberry shortcake and lemon crisp biscuits are also vegan.
Pringles: barbecue and buffalo wing
The word barbecue conjures up whiffs of sizzling steaks and charred snags, but when it comes to snack seasoning it is usually veggie-based. Barbecue Pringles may be bursting with flavor but they are not bursting with beef… the packet proudly proclaims a vegan tick. Careful chip packet perusal reveals vegans can indulge their inner pseudo-carnivore guilt-free with the Xtreme Buffalo Wing Pringles, although we are guessing that is not going to be high on their to-do list.
Woolworths Homebrand Garlic Bread
A fluffy baguette with lashings of butter, herbs and garlic… is what we presume to be garlic bread; in this case, not quite. Vegetable oil margarine, which contains no dairy, is used instead of the butter. This product does not feature on all ‘accidentally vegan’ lists as emulsifier 481 is derived from glycerol, so there is a slim chance it may contain animal fats.
Praise 99% Fat Free Creamy Mayonnaise
They say you don't make friends with salad - well with this secret salad dressing you'll be sure to make some vegan friends. Traditionally a thick, creamy concoction of egg, oil, and vinegar, Praise's fat-free variety ditches the egg and replaces it with thickeners and vegetable gums.
Frozen pastry sheets
Puff pastry sheets with their expected layer upon layer of buttery goodness is not what gets sold in most store-bought options. Many frozen pastry sheets ditch the traditional butter content and replace it with vegetable oil based margarine. So while they may not possess the buttery richness of your typical Parisian croissant, these products are good to go. Pampas short-crust and puff pastry sheets are confirmed vegan.