Gluten-free Oreos are not necessarily vegan. While the original Oreo recipe contained dairy products like milk and was therefore not vegan, some alternative gluten-free Oreo recipes can be made vegan by substituting plant-based ingredients. However, Oreos marketed specifically as “gluten-free” by Nabisco or other major brands still contain dairy and are not vegan. Those adhering to a vegan diet should carefully inspect the ingredients list to confirm whether a gluten-free version of Oreos is vegan or not.
Ingredients in Regular Oreos
The original Oreo cookie recipe contains several animal-derived ingredients that would make it unsuitable for vegans. These ingredients include:
– Milk – Gives Oreos their creamy texture and color. Vegans avoid milk products.
– Whey – A protein extracted from milk during cheese production. Not vegan.
– Egg yolks – Used to add color, moisture, and texture. Vegans do not consume eggs.
So while non-vegans may enjoy Oreos as an indulgent treat, these ingredients exclude Oreos and similar cream-filled sandwich cookies from vegan diets. Those wishing to replicate the Oreo experience with a vegan cookie have had to come up with alternative recipes substituting the dairy and eggs with vegan ingredients.
Are Gluten-Free Oreos Vegan?
Gluten-free Oreos sold by Nabisco are not vegan, because they still contain dairy ingredients like milk. However, some homemade gluten-free Oreo recipes can be made vegan.
When a cookie is labeled as “gluten-free”, this only indicates that it does not contain wheat/gluten. Removing gluten does not automatically make a cookie vegan. Dairy ingredients like milk, whey and eggs can still be present.
Nabisco’s gluten-free Oreos are marketed to those with gluten intolerance or celiac disease, not to vegans. They use alternative grains like rice flour instead of wheat, but still contain milk, whey and egg components. So gluten-free Oreos from Nabisco or similar brands are not vegan. Always check the ingredients list rather than assuming “gluten-free” equals vegan.
However, there are many recipes online for homemade gluten-free Oreos that substitute the dairy and eggs for vegan ingredients. As long as they don’t contain any hidden animal products, these can provide a vegan alternative to traditional non-vegan Oreos.
Vegan Gluten-Free Oreo Ingredients
Here are some examples of ingredients that allow gluten-free Oreos to be vegan:
Instead of wheat flour:
- Rice flour
- Oat flour
- Almond flour
- Coconut flour
Instead of milk/butter:
- Non-dairy milks (almond, oat, soy etc.)
- Vegan butters/spreads
- Coconut oil
- Vegetable oil
Instead of eggs:
- Flax or chia eggs (mixing seeds with water)
- Commercial egg replacers
- Applesauce or bananas
- Aquafaba (liquid from canned chickpeas)
Instead of white sugar:
- Coconut sugar
- Maple syrup or agave
- Date paste
Using these substitutions allows you to create gluten-free Oreo cookies that don’t contain any animal products, making them vegan.
Example Vegan Gluten-Free Oreo Recipe
Here is an example recipe for DIY gluten-free Oreos that are also vegan:
- 1 1/4 cups brown rice flour
- 1/4 cup potato starch
- 1/4 cup tapioca flour
- 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup coconut sugar
- 1 flax egg (1 tablespoon ground flaxseed + 3 tablespoons water)
- 1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1/4 cup vegan butter
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment.
- In a bowl, whisk together the rice flour, potato starch, tapioca flour, xanthan gum and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat together the coconut sugar and flax egg. Then stir in the coconut oil, vanilla and almond milk until combined.
- Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix well. The dough should be thick and sticky.
- Roll dough into small balls and place them on the prepared baking sheets, flattening slightly.
- Bake for 9 minutes then remove and allow to cool completely.
- To make the filling: Beat together the vegan butter, powdered sugar, almond milk and vanilla until creamy.
- Spread filling onto one cookie and top with another to make a sandwich.
This recipe substitutes the non-vegan ingredients for plant-based alternatives, allowing you to create gluten-free Oreos that are vegan.
Are There Vegan Gluten-Free Oreos in Stores?
While the major brands like Nabisco don’t offer vegan gluten-free Oreos, some smaller specialty bakeries are beginning to create them. These are harder to find in regular supermarkets, but may be available in health food stores or ordered online. Some brands offering vegan gluten-free Oreos include:
- Matilda’s Vegan Cookies – Their “Gluten-Free Vegan Golden Oreos” use chickpea flour instead of wheat.
- Morell’s – They have gluten-free vegan Oreo thins available in flavours like chocolate, lemon and matcha.
- Promise Gluten Free – Their dairy-free Oreos are also egg and peanut-free.
- Trust Treats – Offers gluten-free Oreos in flavours like chocolate chip, double chocolate and lemon poppyseed.
So while Nabisco’s standard gluten-free Oreos aren’t vegan, smaller niche brands are beginning to offer vegan consumers gluten and dairy-free options modelled after the famous Oreo cookie taste and appearance.
Price Comparison of Vegan vs Regular Oreos
|Original Oreo Cookies
|$3.79 per pack
|Gluten-Free Oreo Cookies
|$4.99 per pack
|Gluten-Free Vegan Oreos
|$6.99 per pack
This table compares the prices of regular Oreos, gluten-free Oreos, and vegan gluten-free Oreos. The specialized dairy-free gluten-free Oreos cost almost twice as much as regular Oreos. This price premium is typical for specialty allergen-free baked goods. However many vegans feel the added cost provides important animal welfare and health benefits.
Here’s how the nutritional info for vegan gluten-free Oreos compares to regular Oreos:
|Regular Oreos (3 cookies)
|Vegan Gluten-Free Oreos (3 cookies)
The vegan gluten-free Oreos tend to be higher in fat due to ingredients like coconut oil, and higher in protein and fibre with the use of alternative flours. But they are comparable in calories and sugar content. Those avoiding gluten get the benefit of added nutrition from alternative grains like rice, coconut and almond flour.
Environmental Impact of Vegan Oreos
Eating plant-based vegan cookies instead of milk-containing ones has potential environmental benefits. Animal agriculture generates significant greenhouse gas emissions due to methane from cattle, land usage and transportation.
One study by the University of Oxford estimated that producing 1 kilogram of dairy protein emits around 3 times more greenhouse gas than 1 kilogram of plant protein. So switching to vegan dairy-free Oreos could reduce your food-based carbon footprint.
Researchers have also found that vegan diets use much less land and water resources per gram of protein compared to meat-based diets. This is because crops like wheat and beans convert sunlight and water to protein much more efficiently than feeding them to animals.
So by choosing vegan gluten-free Oreos over dairy-containing ones, you can enjoy a sweet treat with less environmental guilt!
Are Vegan Oreos Healthier Than Regular Oreos?
While Oreos are still considered a treat food regardless of being vegan, some research suggests there may be health advantages to gluten and dairy-free versions.
Studies show many people have difficulty digesting milk due to lactose intolerance. Non-dairy milks avoid this issue. There are also health concerns around hormones and antibiotics sometimes present in dairy milk.
Those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity benefit from avoiding the gluten-containing wheat flour in regular Oreos. Alternative gluten-free flours provide fibre, vitamins and minerals.
However, the high sugar content still makes Oreos a food to enjoy in moderation on any diet. But for those requiring gluten-free or vegan options, the substitutes can be an appealing alternative.
While Oreos are traditionally non-vegan due to containing milk, eggs and other animal-derived ingredients, gluten-free Oreo recipes provide a way to enjoy the cookie’s taste and appearance in a vegan version. By using plant-based alternatives for the dairy and eggs, it’s possible to create homemade gluten-free Oreos that are friendly to vegan diets. And some smaller specialty bakeries now offer store-bought vegan gluten-free Oreos as well.
Going vegan and gluten-free does affect the price, nutrition and environmental impact of Oreos. But those seeking to avoid eggs, dairy and gluten for health, ethical or sustainability reasons can still enjoy Oreo cookies in creative dairy-free recipes. So for vegans with a craving for Oreos, there are now more options than ever to get the famous cookie taste and look without the animal products.