Hidden Ingredients To Look Out For If You're Vegetarian

When shopping for food it can be easy to assume that as long as products don't contain meat or fish that they would be suitable for vegetarians to eat, but this isn't always the case. Some products contain hidden ingredients that vegetarians need to be on the look out for. Fortunately, these days a lot of products are actually labelled as being 'suitable for vegans' or 'suitable for vegetarians', but when those labels are not clear, these are some of the things that vegetarians need to check for...

  • Some beers, wine and cider are ‘fined’ or cleared using animal-derived ingredients. 
  • Some but not all orange drinks and fizzy drinks may contain gelatine, which is used as a stabiliser for the orange colour.
  • Although lots of cheese is suitable for vegetarians. Parmesan, Gorgonzola and Grana Padano cheeses are never suitable for vegetarians as they are produced using animal-derived rennet
  • If you go to order chips from a chip shop or restaurant check first if they are cooked in beef dripping or animal fat. Most places do not have to say on their menu's whether cooking methods are veggie friendly, so it is always worth asking.
  • Some desserts, marshmallows, jelly sweets and ice creams contain Gelatine which is obtained by boiling animal tissues (such as skin, tendons, ligaments and bones) of pigs and cows. 
  • Cochineal, which is sourced from crushed insects is used as a red food colouring in some gummy sweets, drinks, biscuits, desserts, sauces and cosmetics.
  • Some yogurts and chocolate mousses may contain gelatine.
  • Gravy can sometimes be made using fats or oils derived from animals.
  • Not all crisps are suitable for vegetarians, though some even 'meat flavoured' are, so always check the back of the packet. 
  • Worcestershire sauce is not suitable for vegetarians as it has got anchovies in it. 
  • A lot of thai dishes, particularly from thai restaurants or takeaways contain fish sauce in their recipes. So it is always worth checking if you are ordering Thai-food. 
  • Watch out for foods and vitamins that contain Omega-3 Fatty Acid as it is often derived from oily fish such as anchovies, salmon, and cod.
Thank you for reading. 
  Alex xo

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