Fritos are one of the most famous corn chips that have been a worldwide household favorite for over 80 years! Whether eaten solo or as an essential part of a dish, this crunchy salt cracker is a filling snack to say the least.
But for anyone enforcing sustainable eating habits, there’s only one question that comes to mind: “are Fritos vegan?” In this article, we’ll discuss how Fritos is made and dissect Fritos’ ingredient label to give you a clear understanding of what you’re consuming. From Fritos BBQ chips to Fritos scoops, we are going to review all Fritos flavors to inform you about all Fritos flavors that may or may not be consumed by vegans.
Fritos – Brand overview
Fritos is an American brand of corn chips that was founded by Charles Elmer Doolin after his experience trying corn chips in Mexico. These salted chips are made from just three ingredients: corn, corn oil, and salt. Fritos have been in the market for over 80 years and are usually the first brand that comes to mind when you think of corn chips.
How are Fritos made?
Fritos follow a basic corn chip recipe that uses salt and oil. The ingredients to be specific are-
- Stone-ground cornmeal or other fine cornmeal
- Extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil
- Optional vegetable oil for frying
The procedure is not very complicated and involves simple steps.
Step 1. One should set aside two pieces of parchment paper the same size as a baking sheet, then one should boil about 3/4 cup of water.
Step 2. Then combine cornmeal and salt in a small mixing bowl and mix using a fork until batter is smooth. Add extra hot water, if necessary, 1 teaspoon at a time until batter is thick and slightly runny.
Step 3. Scrape the batter into the center of a piece of parchment paper on a work surface, cover with a second layer of paper, and roll out the batter to about 33 inches thick. You can remove the paper from the top sheet and cut the batter into small rectangles. Then fry it until golden brown.
Step 4. Set aside, a paper towel-lined plate. Heat some vegetable oil in a small frying pan for 1 to 2 minutes. Finally, fry half of the chips before draining them on a paper towel using a metal strainer.
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Flavors of Fritos
Vegan Frito flavors
- Lightly salted
- Fritos Scoops
Non-vegan Frito flavors
- Classic Ranch
- Honey BBQ
- Flaming Hot
- Chile Cheese
- Spicy Jalapeno
- Flavor Twists Honey BBQ
1. Fritos Original Corn Chips
The Fritos Original Corn Chip Flavor is one of the most popular classic flavors – and one of the best vegan options. These 100% vegan chips are made from only three basic ingredients – whole corn, corn oil and salt, so they contain no animal ingredients.
2. Fritos Scoops Corn chips
Just like the Fritos Original Corn Chip Flavor, the Fritos Scoops Corn Chips are also vegan. It contains no animal-based products and uses corn, corn oil, and salt as its main ingredients. In addition, Fritos scoops are also gluten-free, with no artificial flavors and preservatives.
3. Fritos Flamin Hot & Fritos Chili Cheese
Both the Fritos Flamin Hot and Fritos Chili Cheese flavors are disappointingly not vegan. In addition to the three basic ingredients, which are whole corn, corn oil, and salt, they also contain two different types of cheese. The rennet cheese they use is extracted from the stomach mucosa of goats or sheep. The cheddar cheese, on the other hand, is made from milk and is not plant-based. In addition, whey, another milk-based product, is used to improve the texture of the chips, making these two flavors non-vegan!
4. Fritos Honey Grip-BQ Twists
Fritos Honey BBQ Twists are not only non-vegan but also one of the most processed Fritos chips. In addition to cheese, they also contain honey and eggs, making them non-vegan and non-vegetarian. In addition, they also use artificial dyes which are non-vegan and should be avoided by anyone who eats sustainably.
5. Fritos Bar-BQ
There is a lot of confusion about the nature of Fritos Bar BBQ; but just to break it down for you, these Fritos are non-vegan. This is because the sugar they contain, despite being plant-based, is processed using the bone char refining process. In addition, the artificial colors are synthetically produced, making them non-vegan. These chips are also tested on animals to be declared fit for human consumption. These processes blur the status of these chips and leave it up to the consumer to choose whether they are vegan or not.
Also read: Are Pop Tarts Vegan?
So, are Fritos vegan?
Both yes and no. While certain flavors are vegan, a large majority of Frito’s contain animal ingredients, making them non-vegan.
If you are willing to look at other brands, there are alternative options that you can opt for. While answering the question, “what chips can vegans eat” – we discovered options like certain pringles and Dorito flavors for you to try! For those who want to stick with Fritos, the Original and Fritos Scoops varieties are the only viable options. However, it’s best to find a vegan brand in the future if these chips aren’t your personal favorites.