Nutella is a spread loved by many people, especially children, to the point that Nutella has become synonymous with chocolate cream and hazelnut spreads.
However, is Nutella suitable for vegans?
Nutella is not suitable for vegans because it contains one animal ingredient. However, there are chocolate creams from other brands that are completely vegan.
Often 100% vegan options are healthier yet still quite delicious.
Scroll down if you wish to know why Nutella is not vegan and want to learn of other alternatives.
What is Nutella Made Of?
Nutella is considered a chocolate and hazelnut spread, yet its first two ingredients are sugar and palm oil.
Nutella ingredients: sugar, palm oil, hazelnuts, skim milk powder, cocoa powder, soy lecithin, and vanillin.
Skim milk powder is a milk derivative, sourced from animals, often cows, and is therefore not suitable for vegans, strict vegetarians, and ovo-vegetarians.
Also – while the sugar refining process is controversial, and may not even be vegan, according to the brand’s website, 80% of the sugar purchased comes from beets.
In addition to the spread, the brand also sells the Nutella B-ready bar that contains skim milk powder and whey protein, which are both non-vegan ingredients.
Who Produces Nutella?
Nutella is produced by the Ferrero Group, which also owns other well-known brands such as Kinder (which produces Kinder Eggs, Kinder Chocolate, Kinder Bueno, and Kinder Joy), Ferrero (which produces Ferrero Rocher, Raffaelo, Golden Gallery), and Tic Tac.
Despite researching quite deeply, I wasn’t able to find the brand’s animal testing policy.
However, the group claims to use 100% RSPO and 100% traceable palm fat, which is quite admirable, even though some organizations like Greenpeace often have issues with the RSPO.
Is Nutella Unhealthy?
The main ingredients in Nutella are not cocoa or hazelnut but sugar and palm fat, which makes Nutella a very nutritionally poor as well as sweet and addictive cream.
To give you an idea:
- 56.3 % of Nutella is sugar.
- 30.9 % of Nutella is fat, of which 10.6 % is saturated fat.
- Only 6.3 % is protein.
Thus, Nutella is not considered a healthy food and its consumption should be limited.
This does not mean that it cannot be eaten occasionally, however, eating it daily or in large quantities is very much discouraged.
Vegan Alternatives to Nutella
Nutiva Organic Vegan Hazelnut Spread
The Nutiva hazelnut spread contains the following ingredients:
- Cane Sugar;
- Palm Oil;
- Cocoa Powder;
- Flax Flour;
- Red Palm Oil;
- Coconut Manna;
- Chia Oil;
- Palm Stearin;
- Sunflower Lecithin;
- Vanilla Extract.
The ingredients are all organic and fair trade certified, and it contains 40% less sugar than leading brands, namely Nutella. Therefore, it’s certainly more healthy, as well as sustainable, ethical, and so forth.
Pyure Organic Vegan Hazelnut Spread
The Pyure hazelnut spread contains the following ingredients:
- Organic Vegetable Oils And Organic Fats (Organic Sunflower Oil, Organic Coconut Oil, And Organic Cocoa Butter);
- Organic Erythritol;
- Organic Tapioca Fiber;
- Organic Hazelnuts;
- Organic Cocoa Powder;
- Organic Flax Flour;
- Organic Gum Acacia;
- Organic Sunflower Lecithin (Emulsifier);
- Organic Stevia Leaf Extract (Reb-A);
- Organic Natural Flavors.
The Pyure hazelnut spread also contains organic ingredients and 90% less sugar than leading brands, and also 50% less sugar than the Nutriva hazelnut spread.
Vegan Nutella Recipe
Making “Nutella” at home is super easy and fast as long as you have a good food processor.
This recipe is one of my favorite because it has few ingredients and you can make it more or less healthy by cutting back on the amount of sugar. The fat in the recipe derives only from hazelnuts and cocoa.
For this recipe you’ll need 6 ingredients:
- Cocoa powder
- Brown sugar
- Vanilla extract
Another option for making “Nutella”, is to add to the hazelnut and cocoa paste ingredients such as vegan margarine, and vegetable drink (I usually use soy milk). You can also swap the cocoa powder for baking chocolate.
Nutella is a sugar and fat-based spread that is not suitable for vegans because it contains skim milk powder.
The brand’s other products are also not vegan because they include milk derivatives and/or honey.
Nutella belongs to the Ferrero Group, which markets other chocolates such as Kinder Eggs and Ferrero Rocher, which are also non-vegan.
If you wish to find a vegan product similar to Nutella, look at the alternatives I’ve shared or follow the recipe above for a simple, yet delicious hazelnut spread.
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