When I first went vegan, I heard that Twizzlers were vegan in a few different places.
And while I can see why someone might think that – there’s a very good chance that they’re not.
I’ll walk you through why I think this, and you can decide for yourself if you still want to eat them.
There’s no obvious ingredients from animals like gelatin, which is common in other candy. However, that doesn’t mean that Twizzlers are vegan.
Here are the ingredients for strawberry twists (the standard ones), but the other products like pull ‘n peels and nibs have similar ingredients.
Corn Syrup, Enriched Wheat Flour (Flour, Niacin, Ferrous Sulfate, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, and Folic Acid), Sugar, Cornstarch, Contains 2% or Less of: Palm Oil, Salt, Artificial Flavor, Mono- and Diglycerides, Citric Acid, Potassium Sorbate (Preservative), Artificial Color (Red 40), Mineral Oil, Soy Lecithin, Glycerin
I’ve highlighted the ingredients we need to go over.
- Sugar – Quite a bit of sugar in the United States is not vegan, it’s made with bone char. Companies that make candy like Twizzlers at such a large scale usually get sugar from multiple suppliers because they need so much, meaning there’s a high chance that at least some of that sugar is not vegan. (Some vegans don’t care about this, choose for yourself).
- Palm oil – While palm oil is technically vegan, many vegans still don’t eat it because the palm industry is responsible for pushing multiple species to the edge of extinction. Again, decide for yourself.
- Mono- and diglycerides – Glycerides can come from plants or animals, we have no way of telling which one here.
- Glycerin – Glycerin (or glycerol) may also be vegan, as it can come from plants or animals. Again, we have no way of telling from the ingredients list.
Verdict: Do You Want to Take a Chance on Twizzlers?
Let’s say that you’re okay with palm oil, that leaves 3 potential issues.
There is a chance that all these 3 “problem” ingredients are in fact vegan, but the chance is fairly high that at least one is not.
So, we can’t conclude one way or another here.
Most common candy that you probably grew up with has similar issues (e.g. Skittles probably aren’t vegan).
If you’re okay with taking a risk like this, then enjoy your Twizzlers. Otherwise, look for an alternative that is clearly vegan-friendly.