Are Tootsie Rolls allergy free?

Tootsie Rolls are a classic American candy that have been around since the early 1900s. They are chewy, chocolatey bites that are beloved by many. But with food allergies becoming more prevalent, many people wonder – are Tootsie Rolls allergy free?

Common Food Allergens in Candy

Some of the most common food allergens found in candy and sweets include:

  • Milk – This includes ingredients like milk chocolate, butter, and lactose.
  • Eggs – Used in things like marshmallows, nougat, and candy coatings.
  • Peanuts – Peanuts and peanut butter are used in things like peanut brittle and chocolate bars.
  • Tree nuts – Almonds, cashews, walnuts, and more may be used in brittles, toffees, nut barks, etc.
  • Soy – Soy lecithin and soy proteins are often added to chocolate as emulsifiers.
  • Wheat – Candy bars often contain wheat-based ingredients like malt syrup.

So are Tootsie Rolls free from all of these common allergens? Let’s take a closer look at the ingredients.

Tootsie Roll Ingredients

According to the Tootsie Roll Industries website, the ingredients in Tootsie Rolls are relatively simple:

  • Sugar
  • Corn syrup
  • Palm oil
  • Cocoa
  • Whey
  • Soy lecithin
  • Artificial flavors

Let’s go through each ingredient one-by-one to determine if it poses an allergy risk.


Regular granulated sugar is not considered a common allergen. However, sometimes sugar may contain traces of wheat due to the manufacturing process. According to Tootsie Roll Industries, their sugar does not contain any gluten ingredients.

Corn syrup

Corn syrup is made from cornstarch, which is generally not allergenic. High fructose corn syrup sometimes contains trace gluten as well, but Tootsie Rolls use regular corn syrup.

Palm oil

Palm oil is extracted from the fruit of palm trees and does not contain any of the major allergens.


The cocoa powder used in Tootsie Rolls is a pure cocoa powder without any dairy ingredients like milk. Therefore, it should be safe for people with milk allergies.


Here is the first major allergen found in Tootsie Rolls – whey. Whey is a dairy component that comes from milk. People with milk allergies need to avoid products containing whey.

Soy Lecithin

Next up is soy lecithin. This emulsifier additive is derived from soybeans and is another allergen to be aware of.

Artificial Flavors

The artificial flavors used in Tootsie Rolls could potentially contain hidden allergens like wheat, eggs, peanuts, or tree nuts. However, Tootsie Roll Industries states that their artificial flavors do not contain any of the major food allergens.

Are Tootsie Rolls Gluten-Free?

Based on the ingredients list, Tootsie Rolls do not contain any wheat, barley, rye or gluten-containing ingredients. The company also states that their candy is gluten-free. However, the facility that manufactures Tootsie Rolls does handle wheat products. The equipment is thoroughly cleaned between production runs, but there is a small chance of trace amounts of gluten contamination. The brand suggests that people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivities contact them directly for the most current gluten information.

Are Tootsie Rolls Vegan?

No, Tootsie Rolls are not vegan candies. They contain milk-derived whey and potential animal products in the artificial flavors. People following a vegan diet will want to avoid Tootsie Rolls due to the non-vegan ingredients.

Are Tootsie Rolls Kosher?

Tootsie Rolls do meet kosher dietary guidelines. The Orthodox Union certifies Tootsie Rolls as a kosher food. This certification means they contain no pork or shellfish ingredients and have been processed according to kosher standards.

Potential Cross-Contamination Risks

While the ingredients themselves may not contain major allergens beyond milk and soy, the Tootsie Roll factory handles peanuts and eggs. Traces of these allergens could potentially be introduced during manufacturing. The company states:

“All Tootsie Roll Industries, Inc. candies are made on equipment that may also be used to make products containing peanuts, eggs and other allergens. While thorough sanitation procedures are followed, there is a possibility of cross-contamination.”

So those with severe peanut or egg allergies may want to avoid Tootsie Rolls or check with their doctor to see if trace amounts could be risky.

Are Tootsie Rolls Nut-Free?

Tootsie Rolls do not contain tree nuts, peanuts, peanut butter, or other nut products in the ingredients list. However, they are produced in facilities that also handle nuts. There is potential for minimal cross-contact for those highly sensitive. Overall, Tootsie Rolls can be considered nut-free, but not safe for those with life-threatening nut allergies.


Tootsie Rolls contain two major food allergens directly – milk (in the form of whey) and soy (as soy lecithin). The artificial flavors may potentially contain other allergens, but the company states that the major ones have been avoided. While not certified, Tootsie Rolls are considered gluten-free to most levels. The equipment does process wheat, so trace gluten is possible.

There is also some risk of cross-contamination with peanuts and eggs during manufacturing. Overall, Tootsie Rolls cannot be considered hypoallergenic. Those with milk, soy, peanut, or egg allergies may want to avoid eating Tootsie Rolls or enjoy them with caution under medical supervision. But for people avoiding most common food allergens, Tootsie Rolls can be a nice gluten-free, nut-free treat.

Nutrition Facts

Here is the nutrition information for a standard Midgee Tootsie Roll that weighs 17 grams:

Nutrition Facts 1 Tootsie Roll (17g)
Calories 70
Carbohydrates 13g
Sugar 9g
Fat 2g
Saturated Fat 1g
Protein 1g

Tootsie Rolls are high in sugar with 9g per serving. They do provide a small amount of fat, protein, and carbohydrates. Overall, they are low in nutritional value and are considered more of a fun occasional treat. Those looking for healthier candy alternatives may want to consider options with less added sugar.

Flavors and Varieties

Tootsie Rolls come in a wide variety of flavors and shapes beyond just the classic chocolate Tootsie Roll. Some examples include:

  • Cherry – Chewy cherry-flavored Tootsie Roll
  • Vanilla – Vanilla-flavored chew
  • Chocolate – The original chocolate Tootsie Roll
  • Lemon – Tangy lemon-flavored candy
  • Orange – Bright orange cream-flavored chew
  • Cotton Candy – Sweet blue raspberry cotton candy flavor
  • Charms Blow Pops – Tootsie Roll lollipops with fruity filling
  • Fruit Chews – Chewy fruit-flavored candies in shapes
  • Junior Mints – Mint chocolate covered mints

The various flavors contain differences in ingredients, so some may be more allergy-friendly than others. But in general, all Tootsie Roll products contain some risk of cross-contact with major food allergens during production. Checking each individual ingredient list can help determine the safety for each flavor and variety.

Buying Tootsie Rolls

Tootsie Rolls can be found at most grocery stores, mass retailers, drugstores, and convenience stores year-round. They are typically located in the regular candy aisle. Around Halloween, large bags of miniature Tootsie Rolls are popular for handing out to trick-or-treaters as well.

The company also offers a variety of pre-made Tootsie Roll gift baskets and party packs on their website. These contain an assortment of classic and fruit chew Tootsie Rolls.

Some stores may also carry regional flavors only available in certain areas of the country. So checking candy aisles carefully can help uncover unique finds.

Online bulk candy retailers also offer large packs of Tootsie Rolls for purchase. This can be a more budget-friendly option for candy lovers, parties, and events.

Tootsie Roll Allergy Information and Contact

Tootsie Roll Industries states that their priority is the health and safety of their customers. Their Consumer Relations team can provide the most up-to-date allergy and nutritional information to help customers make informed purchasing choices.

Their contact information is:

Tootsie Roll Industries, LLC
Consumer Relations
7401 S Cicero Ave
Chicago, IL 60629

Phone: 773-838-3400

Email: [email protected]

Those with severe food allergies or detailed questions should reach out to the Tootsie Roll team directly. They can check for the latest information on manufacturing processes and allergen handling procedures. This direct line of communication can provide reassurance for candy-loving allergy sufferers.

Enjoying Tootsie Rolls Safely

Tootsie Rolls hold a special place in candy culture. Fortunately, many people with common food allergies like gluten or nuts can enjoy these nostalgic chewy candies. But those with milk, soy, egg, or peanut allergies need to exercise more caution. Avoiding Tootsie Rolls entirely or contacting the company for their guidance are the safest options. With a few precautions, candy lovers of all kinds can satisfy their cravings for classic chewy Tootsie Rolls.

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