Is Wonder Bread Vegan and Dairy-Free? [Updated]

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Verdict: Wonder Bread is not vegan.

Summary:

  • Classic white Wonder bread contains multiple ingredients that may or may not be vegan. Most importantly, it says “contains milk” on the ingredients label.
  • It’s likely dairy-free (but I wouldn’t take a chance if you have an allergy).
  • There’s a fairly high chance that either the sodium stearoyl lactylate, lecithin, or glycerides are derived from animal products.

White Wonder bread used to clearly not be vegan.

It contained whey, which is a dairy byproduct in the cheese-making process.

But at some point in the past few years, the ingredients seems to have changed, and there’s no longer any whey in it.

That doesn’t necessarily make it vegan, but there are no longer any obvious animal products in it.

Wonder Bread Ingredients

wonder-bread

Here’s the list of ingredients in classic white Wonder bread (I’ve highlighted the ones relevant for vegans) pulled right from the Wonder Bread website:

Unbleached Enriched Flour (Wheat Flour, Malted Barley Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Contains 2% or Less of Each of the Following: Yeast, Salt, Soybean Oil, Wheat Gluten, Dough Conditioners (Contains One or More of the Following: Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Calcium Stearoyl Lactylate, Monoglycerides and/or Diglycerides, Calcium Peroxide, Calcium Iodate, DATEM, Ethoxylated Mono- and Diglycerides, Enzymes), Soy Flour, Yeast Food (Ammonium Sulfate), Monocalcium Phosphate, Calcium Sulfate, Soy, Lecithin, Calcium Propionate.

 

Important note: This loaf used to say “Contains: Wheat, Milk, Soy”, but doesn’t appear to anymore. Double-check in stores to be safe, it may vary based on location.

Regardless, while most ingredients in this bread are clearly vegan, there are a few that may or may not be vegan:

  • Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate – This can be made from either plant or animal sources. Usually is not vegan (source).
  • Mono- and Diglycerides – Glycerides can also be made from either plant or animal sources. Most labels say “vegetable monoglycerides” if they are vegan-friendly, so this isn’t a good sign.
  • Lecithin Again, some lecithin is vegan because it’s made from plant sources (i.e. soy, sunflower), but animal-based lecithin is also quite common.
  • Enzymes – Most enzymes in bread are vegan these days, but there is still a chance that they’re not in this case.

The only ones who know what these ingredients were made from is the manufacturer.

It seems very likely that at least one of them contains animal-based ingredients.

The whole grain and whole wheat Wonder Bread loafs have almost the same ingredients, just different flours.

Verdict: Wonder Bread Is Not Vegan

I’ve requested additional information from Wonder Bread multiple times since first publishing this post (both through their contact forms and public support email addresses), but have never received a response.

So while we don’t know exactly where the dairy comes from, we know that white Wonder Bread (or other varieties) is not likely vegan-friendly.

Are Any Bread Brands Vegan?

Many store-bought loafs of bread happen to be vegan-friendly.

Your best bet are sourdough loaves and brands are marketed more as “natural” or “healthy.”

For example, a local brand of sprouted bread that I buy regularly is clearly vegan.

About the author

Dale Cudmore

Your friendly neighborhood vegan from Toronto. I've spent over 6 years as a freelance nutrition writer and researcher. During this time, I've tested over 50 vegan protein powders, and over 100 other types of vegan supplements.