Is Ketchup Vegan? [List of Vegan Ketchup Brands]

Did you know that, in the past, ketchup was made from all kinds of weird ingredients—including egg whites, oysters, and mussels? Today, most ketchup recipes are pretty similar, focusing on tomatoes, sugar, and vinegar. But… does most ketchup today count as vegan?

Ketchup is usually vegan. The main animal ingredient to avoid is honey. Some vegans may also avoid ketchup that contains sugar, as non-organic cane sugar is often filtered and whitened with animal bone char.

Below, I’ll share the results of my research into 20+ of the most popular ketchup brands in the world. I’ll also touch on some novel forms of ketchup and their vegan status: Banana ketchup, mushroom ketchup, curry ketchup, and ketchup chips!

How to Tell If Ketchup Is Vegan

In just a moment, I’ll cover which of the most popular ketchup brands are vegan. But first, let’s cover what makes ketchup vegan or non-vegan.

Ketchup is usually vegan, as it doesn’t typically contain any milk, egg, or meat products. However, there are a few ingredients that some vegans try to avoid in ketchup:

  • Honey: Some ketchups are sweetened with honey instead of sugar or corn syrup. Since honey is made by bees, it is an animal product that most vegans try to avoid. Notable ketchups containing honey: Heinz Sweetened With Honey and Hellmann’s Real Tomato Ketchup.
  • Sugar: Non-organic cane sugar is often filtered through animal bone char to whiten it. So ketchups containing non-organic sugar may be objectionable to some vegans. But this is mostly an issue that just matters to the pickiest vegans. Many vegans are okay with eating sugar. If you want to avoid sugar filtered with bone char, I recommend choosing an organic ketchup.
  • Sucralose: If you choose a sugar-free ketchup, then it may be sweetened with an artificial sweetener like sucralose (Splenda). As I covered in a separate blog post, sucralose was tested heavily on animals in its development. So while it is a synthetic product and free of animal ingredients, some strict vegans may choose to avoid sucralose.

Now that we’ve covered the main ingredients to watch for, now let’s dive into the list of ketchup brands!

Vegan Ketchup Brands

Let’s take a look at the most popular ketchup brands and see which of their products are vegan. Again, most ketchup is vegan, but occasionally you’ll find some that aren’t.

Heinz

Almost all Heinz ketchup is vegan, including Classic, No Salt Added, No Sugar Added, Organic, Simply Heinz, With a Blend of Veggies, Hot & Spicy, Jalapeño, and Sriracha Ketchup. The only non-vegan Heinz ketchup is the Sweetened With Honey variety.

If you’re a very strict vegan, you may be worried about the sucralose in Heinz’s sugar-free ketchup. Sucralose has an infamous history of animal testing, with over 12,000 animals dying in the development of the artificial sweetener.

That said, most vegans are okay with sucralose, as it is a synthetically made ingredient that does not contain animal products.

Many Heinz ketchups also have sugar that was likely filtered with animal bone char. Most vegans are okay with this—but if you’re picky about sugar, just get Heinz Organic ketchup instead. Organic sugar isn’t filtered with bone char.

Here are the Heinz Ketchup Ingredients (Classic flavor):

“TOMATO CONCENTRATE FROM RED RIPE TOMATOES, DISTILLED VINEGAR, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, CORN SYRUP, SALT, SPICE, ONION POWDER, NATURAL FLAVORING.” (source)

Hunt’s

Hunt’s ketchup is generally considered vegan. Both the Classic Tomato Ketchup and 100% Natural Tomato Ketchup varieties are free of animal products.

The main difference between Hunt’s Classic and Hunt’s 100% Natural is that Classic includes high-fructose corn syrup, while 100% Natural has cane sugar instead.

So again, unless you’re a very picky vegan about sugar, there is nothing to worry about in Hunt’s ketchup.

Annie’s

Annie’s Organic Ketchup is confirmed vegan. There are no animal ingredients, and the cane sugar is organic, so there’s no risk of bone char being used as a filter.

Annie’s offers an “Upside Down” ketchup, but it has the same ingredients as their normal ketchup, so it’s also confirmed vegan.

Here are the ingredients for Annie’s Organic Ketchup:

“Tomato Paste*, Water, Cane Sugar*, Distilled White Vinegar*, Sea Salt, Dried Onion* Allspice*, Clove*.” (* = Organic ingredients) [source]

Del Monte

Del Monte ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal products.

Here are the ingredients for Del Monte ketchup:

“Tomato Concentrate, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Distilled Vinegar, Corn Syrup, Salt, Onion Powder, Spice.” (source)

French’s

French’s ketchup is considered vegan, including the Tomato Ketchup and Buffalo Tomato Ketchup varieties. They contain no animal ingredients. The “Natural Butter Type Flavor” in French’s Buffalo Tomato Ketchup is not derived from milk or any other animal product.

As a vegan, you may be concerned to read “Natural Butter Type Flavor” on an ingredients list. But in this case, we have word from the company that it is not derived from animal products.

You will find many products like this, as a vegan—they’re “butter flavored” but don’t actually contain butter. The most famous example is Act II Butter Lover’s Popcorn.

Here are the ingredients to the normal French’s Tomato Ketchup:

“Tomato Concentrate (Made from Red Ripe Tomatoes), Sugar, Distilled Vinegar, Salt, Onion Powder, Spices and Natural Flavor.” (source)

Hellmann’s

Hellmann’s Real Ketchup is not generally considered vegan, as it is sweetened with honey. Some vegans don’t worry about honey, however, so those vegans may be okay with Hellmann’s Real ketchup.

Here are the ingredients to Hellmann’s Real Ketchup:

“Tomato puree, honey, white wine vinegar, spices, onion powder and salt.” (source)

Leon

Leon ketchup is generally considered vegan, including their original Ketchup and their Beetroot Ketchup. Neither varieties contain animal ingredients.

The only concern would be if you’re very strict about whether the sugar was filtered with bone char. It’s likely, though not confirmed, that the sugar in Leon’s ketchup is filtered with bone char.

There are no other sketchy ingredients like honey. (source, source)

Red Gold

All varieties of Red Gold ketchup are generally considered vegan. These include the Folds of Honor Ketchup, Mama Selita’s Jalapeno Ketchup, their Organic Ketchup, and their Tomato Ketchup with Real Sugar. None of them include animal products.

Red Gold offers a few different ketchup products, but the only ingredient to really be suspicious of is the sugar, if you are worried about it being filtered with bone char. (source)

Again, if you’re worried about bone char, just get the organic option. Organic sugar is not filtered with animal bone char.

Daddies

Daddies Ketchup is generally considered vegan. It contains no animal products. Daddies ketchup is actually made by Heinz—did you know? And just like most of the Heinz options, it’s fully vegan.

Here are the ingredients for Daddies Ketchup:

“Tomatoes, Spirit Vinegar, Sugar, Modified Cornflour, Salt, Preservative – Potassium Sorbate, Spice Extract.” (source)

One interesting side note about Daddies Ketchup: It’s one of the few ketchups to contain the preservative potassium sorbate. This ingredient causes allergic reactions for some, including in this alarming case where a woman said the ketchup gave her baby “burn marks.”

Bramwells

Bramwells Ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal ingredients.

Here are the ingredients to Bramwells Tomato Ketchup:

“Tomatoes, Sugar, Spirit Vinegar, Salt, Flavorings (Contains Celery), Spice, Garlic Powder.” (source)

Stokes

Stokes Tomato Ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal ingredients.

Here are the ingredients for Stokes Tomato Ketchup:

Tomatoes, Unrefined Raw Cane Sugar, Spirit Vinegar, Cornflour, Sea Salt, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Seasoning (Salt, Spice Extracts (contains Celery), Onion Extract). (source)

Chef

Chef Tomato Ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal ingredients.

Here are the ingredients for Chef Tomato Ketchup:

Tomatoes, Sugar, Barley Malt Vinegar, Vinegar, Modified Maize Starch, Salt, Spices. (source)

Maggi

Maggi Tomato Ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal ingredients.

Here are the ingredients to Maggi Tomato Ketchup:

“Water, Sugar, Tomato Paste, Salt, Acetic Acid, Onion Powder, Spice Extract, Garlic Powder, Sodium Benzoate and Pectin.” (source)

Burman’s (Aldi Brand)

Burman’s Tomato Ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal ingredients.

Here are the ingredients to Burman’s (Aldi) Ketchup:

“Tomato concentrate, high-fructose corn syrup, distilled vinegar, corn syrup, salt, less than 2% of: spice, onion powder, natural flavors.” (source)

Tesco

Tesco Tomato Ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal ingredients.

Here are the ingredients to Tesco Tomato Ketchup:

“Tomato Puree, Sugar, Spirit Vinegar, Cornflour, Salt, Acidity Regulator (Citric Acid), Tomato Powder, Rice Flour, Flavouring, Onion Powder, Dextrose, Spices.” (source)

Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe’s ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal ingredients.

Here are the ingredients to Trader Joe’s Organic Ketchup:

“Organic tomato puree (water, organic tomato paste), organic cane sugar, organic distilled white vinegar, salt, organic onion powder, organic spices (organic all spice, salt, organic clove, organic red pepper, organic paprika).” (source)

Great Value

Great Value Tomato Ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal products.

Here are the ingredients to Great Value Tomato Ketchup:

“Tomato Concentrate, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup, Distilled Vinegar, Salt, Less than 2% of: Spices, Onion Powder, Natural Flavors.” (source)

Kroger

Kroger Tomato Ketchup is confirmed vegan—including Original Tomato Ketchup and 50% Less Sugar & Sodium Tomato Ketchup. Both varieties contain no animal products.

Here are the ingredients to Kroger Original Tomato Ketchup:

“Tomato Concentrate, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Distilled Vinegar, Corn Syrup, Salt, Contains 2% or Less of: Spice, Onion Powder, Natural Flavors.” (source)

Waitrose

Waitrose Essential Tomato Ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal products.

Here are the ingredients for Waitrose Essential Tomato Ketchup:

Tomato puree (75%) (water, tomato concentrate), spirit vinegar, sugar, modified maize starch, sea salt, flavoring. (source)

McDonald’s

McDonald’s ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal products.

Here are the ingredients of a McDonald’s Ketchup Packet:

“Tomato Concentrate from Red Ripe Tomatoes, Distilled Vinegar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup, Water, Salt, Natural Flavors.” (source)

Burger King

Burger King ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal products.

Here are the ingredients of Burger King Ketchup Packets:

“Tomato concentrate made from Red Ripe Tomatoes, Distilled Vinegar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup, Salt, Spice, Onion Powder, Natural Flavoring from plant.” (source)

Wendy’s

Wendy’s ketchup is confirmed vegan, as it contains no animal products.

Here are the ingredients of Burger King Ketchup Packets:

“Tomato Concentrate (made from red ripe tomatoes), Distilled Vinegar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup, Salt, Spice, Onion Powder, Natural Flavoring.” (source)

Whataburger

Whataburger ketchup is confirmed vegan. This includes both Whataburger Fancy Ketchup and Whataburger Spicy Ketchup. Both varieties contain no animal products.

Here are the ingredients to Whataburger ketchup:

Whataburger Fancy Ketchup ingredients: “Tomato concentrate (water, tomato paste), high fructose corn syrup, distilled vinegar, sugar, salt, onion powder, garlic powder, spices, natural flavors.” (source)

Whataburger Spicy Ketchup ingredients: “Tomato concentrate (water, tomato paste), high fructose corn syrup, distilled vinegar, red jalapeno pepper puree, sugar, salt, onion powder, potassium sorbate, garlic powder, spices, natural flavor.” (source)

More Kinds of Vegan Ketchup

In putting together this guide to vegan ketchup, I found some interesting kinds of ketchup that I’d never even heard of before: Curry ketchup, banana ketchup, and mushroom ketchup.

So, let’s answer the question: Are these interesting kinds of ketchup vegan? And who even eats them?

Is Curry Ketchup Vegan?

Curry Ketchup is typically vegan, as it contains no animal ingredients or animal-derived by-products.

If you’re not familiar with curry ketchup, it’s actually most popular in Germany, Belgium, Norway, and the Netherlands. It’s often put on french fries and certain meat dishes. It’s simply ketchup with more seasonings and spices added.

All the leading brands of curry ketchup are vegan:

  • Zeisner Curry Ketchup is vegan. (Ingredients here.)
  • Heinz Curry Ketchup is vegan. (Ingredients here.)
  • Hela Curry Ketchup is vegan. (Ingredients here.)
  • Knorr Curry Ketchup is vegan. (Ingredients here.)

Is Banana Ketchup Vegan?

Banana ketchup (or banana sauce) is typically vegan. The leading brands do not contain any animal products.

Banana ketchup is a condiment used mainly in the Philippines. It contains banana, vinegar, sugar, and spices. The leading brands that I could find ingredients for are all vegan:

  • UFC Banana Sauce is vegan. (Ingredients here.)
  • Jufran Banana Sauce is vegan. (Ingredients here.)

Is Mushroom Ketchup Vegan?

Mushroom ketchup is typically vegan. The leading brands do not contain any animal products.

Mushroom ketchup seems to be most popular in the United Kingdom—but I get the sense that it’s not even very popular there. It’s a bit more of a niche condiment, and a relic of how ketchup used to be made.

The leading mushroom ketchup brands are confirmed vegan:

  • Geo Watkins Mushroom Ketchup is vegan. (Ingredients here.)
  • Jack’s Pantry Mushroom Ketchup is vegan. (Ingredients here.)

Are Ketchup Chips Vegan?

Last but not least, let’s look at whether ketchup-flavored potato chips are vegan!

Some brands of ketchup chips are vegan, but others are not. Potatoes are vegan, and ketchup is usually vegan, so really, it just depends on the other ingredients that are added.

Here’s what I found for the leading brands of ketchup chips:

  • Ketchup Doritos appear to be vegan. (Ingredients here.)
  • Ketchup Lay’s appear to be vegan. (Ingredients here.)
  • Ketchup Pringles are not vegan, as they contain milk ingredients. (Ingredients here.)

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