Trying to work out if Domino’s is vegan is a tough task.
Pizza is, by definition, a non-vegan food, but more and more UK brands are marketing vegan versions of traditional foods, including vegan pizza.
To make sure you only eat foods that align with your ethical values, I’ve investigated the ingredients and production methods of Domino’s UK. Here’s what I found.
Is Domino’s Vegan?
No. Domino’s is not vegan. All Domino’s pizza doughs contain L-cysteine, which according to Domino’s customer support is microbial based but uses sweet dairy whey, a dairy by-product that is common in bread and pizza doughs.
L-cysteine is used as a dough conditioner and can be sourced from animal, poultry, or plant products. Domino’s has insisted that their L-cysteine is synthetic or microbial and is not from human hair or chicken feathers as is commonly believed. But the sweet dairy whey is a deal breaker for vegans.
When it comes to sauce, Domino’s has a vegan sauce in the form of the robust inspired tomato sauce, which is available as a base for pizzas. Other sauces like the marinara pizza sauce, garlic dipping sauce, and hot buffalo sauce are not vegan.
Is Domino’s Cruelty Free?
Domino’s is not cruelty free. While the company does not test their products on animals, they do use animal products like eggs, meat, and dairy. Some of the farms that supply Domino’s with these ingredients abuse animals and do not follow humane practices.
What Is Domino’s Pizzas Made Of?
Here are the common ingredients of Domino’s pizza:
- Flour (wheat, malted barley)
- Soybean oil
- Calcium propionate (preservative)
- Leavening (sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium bicarbonate, monocalcium phosphate, calcium lactate)
- Corn starch
- L-cysteine (dough conditioner)
- Tomato puree (water, tomato paste)
- Citric acid
Let’s break down each ingredient of Domino’s:
Flour (wheat, malted barley)
Flour is the main ingredient in pizza dough and is made from grinding wheat into a powder. Flour that is created using wheat and malted barley is vegan, and the process of making it does not use any animal products or by-products.
Soybean oil is a popular vegetable oil often used in vegan cooking. It is made from soybeans, a type of legume. Soybean oil does not contain any animal derivatives or by-products.
Salt is a mineral found in the earth’s crust. It is used in food to enhance flavour and as a preservative. Salt does not contain any animal products or by-products.
Calcium propionate (preservative)
Calcium propionate is a food preservative that prevents mould and bacteria growth. It is derived from calcium, which is a mineral found in rocks and bones. The production of calcium propionate does not involve any animal products or by-products.
Dextrose is a sugar made from cornstarch. It is often used as a sweetener in food and beverages. Dextrose is not processed using bone char or any other animal products or by-products.
Leavening is a process that uses yeast to make the dough rise. The leavening agents sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium bicarbonate, monocalcium phosphate, and calcium lactate are all vegan because they are derived from minerals and the process of making them does not involve any animal products or by-products.
Cornstarch is a type of flour made from corn. It is often used as a thickening agent in food. Cornstarch is vegan because it does not contain any animal products or by-products.
Yeast is a single-celled microorganism used to make bread and beer. The process of making yeast does not involve any animal products or by-products.
L-cysteine (dough conditioner)
L-cysteine is an amino acid often used as a dough conditioner in breadmaking. It can be derived from animal, poultry, or plant sources. Domino’s has insisted that their L-cysteine is synthetic or microbial and is not sourced from human hair or poultry feathers.
However, Domino’s also confirmed that the L-cysteine they use contains sweet dairy whey, which is a dairy by-product and therefore not vegan.
Tomato puree (water, tomato paste)
Tomato puree is a thick sauce made from tomatoes. It is commonly used in Italian cuisine. Tomato puree is 100% vegan.
Sugar is a sweetener made from sugar cane or sugar beets. It is often used in baking and as a sweetener in food and beverages. Sugar is considered vegan if given the distinctions of ‘raw’, ‘organic’, or ‘unrefined’. However, without those distinctions sugar may be processed using animal bone char, which is not vegan.
Domino’s did not specify if they are using vegan-certified sugar so strict vegans should assume that their sugar is not vegan.
Spices are dried and often ground seeds, fruits, bark, or roots used to flavour food. Spices do not contain any animal products or by-products.
Garlic is a root vegetable commonly used in cooking. It is part of the onion family and has a strong flavour. Garlic is a vegan ingredient.
Citric acid is a type of acid found in citrus fruits. It is often used as a preservative or flavouring agent in food and beverages. Citric acid isn’t processed using animal derivatives or by-products.
Why Isn’t Domino’s Vegan?
Domino’s offers vegan pizzas. However, they are not vegan for the simple fact that they used three ingredients that are not safe for vegan consumption.
Domino’s uses L-cysteine as a dough conditioner, which is often derived from chicken feathers or human hair.
Domino’s have also disclosed that they use sweet dairy whey in their dough, which is a dairy by-product.
Domino’s does not use vegan-certified sugar in their pizzas. While sugar is plant based, some sugar may be processed using bone char, which is not cruelty free or vegan.
Domino’s has five pizza crusts, and three of them—the Brooklyn Crust, the Handmade Pan Crust, and the Hand-Tossed Crust—have whey in them, and the Gluten-Free has honey. Domino’s Thin Crust is the only one that could be considered a vegan crust, if not for the L-cysteine, of course. When it comes to vegan pizza crust options, Domino’s leaves much to be desired.
Other ingredients, such as cheese, can be replaced with a vegan variety and the sauce with barbecue sauce, but the dough is just not safe for vegans to consume.
Domino’s also can’t guarantee that there’s no cross contamination in their kitchens.
Is Vegan Avocado Veg Pizza Vegan?
No, vegan avocado is not vegan. Domino’s crusts are not vegan. The Gluten-Free crust has honey, and the only one that is almost vegan, the Thin Crust, has L-cysteine as a dough conditioner.
L-cysteine could be from human hair or chicken feathers, and Domino’s uses one that also has sweet dairy whey. They also don’t use vegan-certified sugar, so strict vegans should assume that their dough is not safe for vegan consumption.
Is Vegan Spicy Veg Trio Pizza Vegan?
No, the Vegan Spicy Veg Trio is not actually vegan. The main reason for this is the crusts—they all have whey and non-vegan sugar. This product is not safe for vegan consumption.
Is Vegan Margherita Vegan?
No, the Vegan Margherita is not actually vegan. The main reason for this is the crusts—they all have whey and non-vegan sugar. This product is not safe for vegan consumption.
Is Vegan Beef & Onion Vegan?
No, the Vegan Beef & Onion is not vegan. The main reason for this is the crusts—they all have whey and non-vegan sugar. This product is not safe for vegan consumption.
Is the Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich Vegan?
No. While the Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich does not have any meat, it does have dairy in the form of feta, provolone, and American cheese. You could probably order it without cheese and add your own vegan cheese. This will leave you with roasted red peppers, diced tomatoes, banana peppers, fresh onions, and fresh baby spinach on ciabatta bread, which is vegan.
Is the Chicken Apple Pecan Salad Vegan?
Of course not. However, you can order it without the chicken and the cheese to make it vegan.
Is Domino’s Classic Garden Salad Vegan?
No. The Dominos Classic Garden Salad is not vegan. It contains croutons, which are usually made with dairy and eggs. It also contains cheese and dressings such as Ranch or Caesar that are not vegan. To make this salad vegan, you would need to order it with balsamic vinaigrette dressing, without the croutons and cheese.
Is Domino’s Vegan PepperoNAY Vegan?
Domino’s PepperoNAY Pizza uses vegan meat from the Vegetarian Butcher. However, their crusts are not vegan. They all have whey and non-vegan sugar. This product is not safe for vegan consumption.
Is Domino’s Bread and Penne Pasta Noodles Vegan
No. Domino’s Bread and Penne Pasta Noodles are not vegan. The bread contains dairy and the pasta contains eggs. This product is not safe for vegan consumption.
Vegan-Friendly Alternatives to Domino’s Pizza
Several brands offer vegan pizza options:
Domino’s UK has tried to be vegan friendly by offering vegan options, but they are not truly vegan. The main reason for this is that their dough contains L-cysteine, which is often derived from chicken feathers or human hair and contains whey. Domino’s also cannot confirm that they don’t use sugar processed with bone char.
So, if you’re looking for a vegan pizza, Domino’s is not your best bet. Don’t worry though, there are plenty of delicious vegan pizza options out there. The ones we listed above are all vegan friendly and will not disappoint.
As usual, to ensure the food brands you consume are safe for vegan consumption, always read the ingredients list.