Buffalo sauce is a hot sauce created in Buffalo, New York by a woman named Teressa Belissimo in 1964, also known as the inventor of the popular spicy Buffalo wings, which are also referred to as “chicken wings”, “hot wings”, or simply “wings”.
The spicy Buffalo wings are generally deep-fried and then coated or dipped in Buffalo sauce, which is essentially a combination between hot sauce and butter.
According to food connoisseurs, this combination creates a delicious, creamy sauce with a hint of spiciness that is not too overwhelming.
So, Is Buffalo Sauce Vegan?
Unfortunately, although one can easily make a vegan buffalo sauce, most traditional recipes and store-bought buffalo sauces are not vegan because they contain butter, a non-vegan ingredient.
However, if you’re up for it, you can easily make the base for Buffalo sauce by simply combining a cayenne pepper-based hot sauce, vegan butter (or other fat), and vinegar. You can also adjust the pepper content to make it mild, medium, or hot.
Also, contrary to what most people might think, not all store-bought Buffalo sauces contain real butter, for instance, Frank’s Buffalo sauce contains the following ingredients: distilled vinegar, aged cayenne red peppers, salt, water, canola oil, paprika, xanthan gum, natural “butter” flavor, and garlic powder.
Even though it has a “natural butter flavor”, the company has actually confirmed that this flavor is not actual butter and contains no animal derivatives or milk-based proteins. Though to be honest, this is an exception, not the rule.
Other ingredients such as Worcestershire sauce and garlic powder can also be used to make Buffalo sauce, but they’re not seen as often, particularly in places that stick to traditional roots.
Can Buffalo Sauce Be Made Vegan?
Although you won’t find a vegan Buffalo sauce in a restaurant where they prepare hot chicken wings, it’s still possible to come across vegan Buffalo sauce.
Amazon is a place where you can find a wide variety of sauces, including vegan Buffalo sauce. Primal Kitchen, a brand of vegan Buffalo sauce, replaces dairy butter with cashew butter to replicate the same flavor and consistency of the original Buffalo sauce.
If you wish to make your own vegan Buffalo sauce, you can also do so at home.
Recipe blogs like The Edgy Veg happen to have a delicious vegan buffalo sauce recipe that is pretty easy to make and takes no time. The author uses a regular cayenne pepper-based hot sauce, vegan butter, white vinegar, paprika, vegan Worcestershire sauce, ground cayenne pepper, garlic powder, salt, and voilá.
Here is a quick video of the recipe:
Therefore, yes, it’s possible to find commercial vegan Buffalo sauce in marketplaces like Amazon (as well as other niche marketplaces) and you can also make your very own version at home with just a handful of ingredients.
Buffalo sauce is not vegan because it’s traditionally made with butter, which means the buffalo sauce used on chicken wings usually contains butter, which is bad news if you’re allergic to dairy.
However, it’s possible to find vegan Buffalo sauces in marketplaces like Amazon, Walmart, and other health food stores. Some popular brands of Buffalo sauce are also accidentally vegan, which is the case with Frank’s Buffalo sauce.
Therefore, whilst most Buffalo sauces are not vegan, there are a few vegan options here and there.