The short answer: Yes, Cellucor C4 IS vegan.
It took me way too long to find that answer myself.
I kept reading mixed answers, with some saying that tons of vegan bodybuilders use it, and others saying it wasn’t because the creatine might be derived from animal sources (even though most creatine is vegan).
Even different employees in Cellucor seem to be confused.
Asking Cellucor’s Support Team If It’s Vegan
To get a definitive answer, I reached out and asked if Cellucor’s support team if Cellucor C4 uses a vegan source of creatine, here’s their reply:
In case the image is not loading, here’s a direct quote:
Thank you for contacting Cellucor! The Creatine Nitrate (NO3-T ®) is not derived from animal byproducts because it is made synthetically. Please let us know if you have any questions and have a wonderful day!
I even asked her to double-check because I’ve read conflicting statements. She quickly let me know:
“I verified with a colleague in Product Development that the Creatine Nitrate is synthesized.”
Ingredients in Cellucor
Here’s the full ingredient list for Cellucor C4 Original, the creatine nitrate is the only ingredient that was potentially not vegan friendly:
- CarnoSyn Beta-Alanine
- Creatine Nitrate (NO3-T ®)
- Arginine AKG
- Citric Acid
- Malic Acid
- Calcium Silicate
- Silicon Dioxide
- Natural Flavors
- Acesulfame Potassium
- FD&C Red Lake #40
Most of those ingredients are obviously vegan (e.g. caffeine, citric acid, malic acid, etc.). I’ve highlighted 2 that merit a bit more of a note.
First, not all natural flavors are vegan, so when you see this on an ingredients list, you need to check with the company itself. In this case, I’ve already done that for you and we can be confident that the natural flavors are all plant-based.
Second, some vegans still won’t want it because of the Red 40 in it, which is an artificial coloring – a controversial ingredient. Artificial colors are surrounded by animal testing, so many make the argument that artificial colors are not vegan. I don’t think there’s a clear answer either way, so you’ll have to make your own call.
Cellucor C4 is vegan by most standards, as all ingredients are either made synthetically (without animal products) or derived from plants. However, there is artificial coloring in it, and some vegans will want to find an alternative because of it.
Other Vegan Friendly Pre Workout Alternatives to Cellucor C4
There’s quite a few vegan pre-workout supplements if you’re looking to try something new. Here are some of the most popular options:
- Cellulor C4 Ripped (pretty much C4 Original, just without the creatine, but still have artificial colors)
- Mr. Hyde Pre-Workout (Both the NitroX and Intense Energy versions are vegan friendly)
- Vega Sport Pre-Workout Sugar-Free Energizer
Not all those products contain creatine. If that’s important to you, I’ve gone over some popular vegan friendly creatine options here.
Finally, consider just buying individual ingredients like caffeine by themselves. Most evidence shows that caffeine is the most consistently effective pre-workout for most people, and also safe to take in recommended doses.