While it’s not difficult to find vegan snacks, some of our favorite snacks are the ones we originally ate as children, but they turn out to not be vegan upon closer inspection. Doritos, for example, have a lot of flavors that are not suitable for vegans, and that breaks the heart of a lot of new vegans.
Much like Doritos, not all Takis flavors are vegan. In fact, according to the flavor lineup taken from Takis’s official website, two flavors are vegan, but the remaining three contain animal ingredients.
The table below details which flavors are vegan and which ones aren’t:
|Takis:||Flavor profile:||Is it vegan?|
|Fuego||Hot chili pepper and lime||Vegan|
|Nitro||Habanero, lime, and cucumber||Vegan|
|Crunchy Fajita||Spice and fajita||Not vegan|
|Guacamole||Spicy guacamole||Not vegan|
|Wild||Spicy buffalo||Not vegan|
In this article, I’ll explain in detail why some of the flavors are not vegan, and I will also discuss some of the ingredients present in ALL Takis that are deemed as questionable within the vegan community. If you’re interested in knowing more about this sort of information, I invite you to continue reading this blog post.
What Are Takis?
Takis is a rather popular snack in the United States. It’s a spicy, roll-shaped snack inspired by the traditional Mexican taquito.
Wikipedia suggests that are way more flavors than the ones available on Barcel USA’s official website, but a lot of them have been discontinued.
Takis are known for being hot and spicy with complex flavor profiles, which many people appreciate and that’s why Takis are still going strong after two decades.
Recommended Read: Are Doritos Vegan?
Takis’s core ingredients are corn flour, vegetable oil, seasonings, preservatives, and colors. Obviously, the ingredients vary based on the flavor you choose, but the core ingredients typically remain the same.
For instance, let’s look at the ingredients of the most popular Takis flavor, the Takis Fuego:
- Corn Masa Flour (Processed With Lime)
- Vegetable Oil (Palm And/Or Soybean And/Or Canola Oil And/Or Rice Bran Oil )
- Seasoning [Salt, Maltodextrin, Citric Acid, Sugar, Monosodium Glutamate, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Onion Powder, Yeast Extract, Artificial Color (Red 40 Lake, Yellow 6 Lake), Natural And Artificial Flavors, Baking Soda, Soybean Oil, Chili Pepper (Chile), Disodium Inosinate, Disodium Guanylate, TBHQ (Antioxidant)].
The Takis Fuego are vegan because they do not contain animal ingredients, but you’ll still find what’s called “questionable ingredients”, which are ingredients that may be indirectly or directly associated with animal cruelty in one specific phase of the supply chain. I’ll go over those ingredients later in this article.
Recommended Read: Why Sugar May Not Be Vegan
Why Aren’t Most Takis Vegan?
Unfortunately, three out of the five Takis flavors are not vegan, including:
- Crunchy Fajita (contains natural flavors derived from milk and eggs)
- Guacamole (contains Sodium Caseinate, a milk derivative)
- and Wild (contains both buttermilk and whey, which are derived from milk)
If you want to tell vegan and non-vegan products apart, these are the sort of ingredients you want to be particularly careful about, as they will dictate which products are vegan.
All Takis Have Questionable Plant-Based Ingredients
Questionable ingredients are ingredients that may have involved sacrificing animals at some point during the particular ingredient’s supply chain.
Takis contain three questionable ingredients: sugar, artificial colors, and palm oil.
I’m going to explain the issue with each one individually so that you have an idea of whether or not you should go ahead and consume Takis.
Sugar May be Processed with Animal Ingredients
While it’s not always the case, some sugar may be processed with a property called bone char.
Bone char is a charcoal-like powder used to process, filter, and bleach cane sugar, that is obtained by heating the bones of cattle at high temperatures.
Bone char is only used in cane sugar, so if the company uses sugar derived from beets, it means that no bone char was used during the refinement phase.
Since both cane sugar and beet sugar are used in equal amounts, vegans are afraid that even products that do not contain obvious animal ingredients may not be vegan. For example, brands like Oreos and Ghirardelli have a mixed pool of sugar suppliers, including ones that use bone char.
The good news is that vegan alternatives like ion-exchange resins and activated charcoal are gaining traction.
Artificial Colors Are Tested on Animals
This isn’t anything new, and you probably already know what I’m about to say here.
A lot of the artificial colors present in some of our favorite foods have been tested on animals, and some of these artificial colors continue to be tested on animals to prevent future health issues from arising.
These tests from 2017 and 2018 show us that Red #40 (which is also present in Takis) is routinely tested on mice, which is obviously something that anyone with strong compassion towards animals dislikes.
For that reason, some vegans may be against consuming products that contain artificial colors.
Recommended Read: Are Natural Flavors Vegan?
Palm Oil Production Can be Harmful to Animals
While a plant-based ingredient, palm oil production has proven to be very harmful to our planet and the species that inhabit it. Its impact on Borneau Orangutangs, according to Cell.com, is daunting.
It turns out that between 1999 and 2015, 100,000 orangutans have perished as a result of palm oil demand and the poor agricultural practices employed by companies like Nestlé, for instance.
The video above gives you an idea of what takes place when new plantations are built.
Some of the Takis, including the Fuego and Nitro-flavored Takis, are suitable for vegans, as they do not contain any flagrant animal ingredients like milk or eggs. However, other than those two flavors, the remaining flavors contain animal ingredients, so be sure to check the ingredient label before purchasing.
With that said, keep in mind that Takis contain questionable ingredients, or in other words, ingredients that may have involved animal sacrifice at some point throughout the supply chain. So, if you consider yourself to be a strict vegan, it’s quite likely that you’re against some of these questionable ingredients.
If you found this blog post useful, feel free to share it with friends or family that may also find it useful.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Takis Bad For You?
Takis are made with ingredients that are not healthy, including flour (refined), oils, artificial flavors, and dyes, as well as seasonings and preservatives.
Even though some of the flavors are vegan, that doesn’t mean they are healthy.
A healthy vegan diet is essentially a diet comprised of whole foods, in other words, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and other food sources that are minimally refined and packed with lots of vitamins and minerals.
The same can’t be said about Takis because they contain a lot of ingredients associated with health problems.
Are Takis Gluten-Free?
Takis are not gluten-free, as they are processed in a facility that deals with wheat, which means that if you’re acutely sensitive to gluten, you should avoid Takis to prevent an allergic reaction.