Is Gardetto’s Vegan and Cruelty Free? The Cheesy Truth

Trying to work out whether Gardetto’s snack mixes are safe for vegans to consume can be challenging.

Makers of chips and snack mixes often hide their ingredients behind vague terms, such as “natural flavors,” and even when they do list them, it can be hard to figure out what exactly they are.

To make sure that you are only eating food that aligns with your vegan diet and ethics, I’ve looked into the ingredients and production processes of Gardetto’s.

Here’s what I found.

Is Gardetto’s Vegan?

No. Gardetto’s is not vegan.

Gardetto’s is a type of snack mix that typically contains pretzels, rye chips, and breadsticks coated in a cheesy flavoring. So unfortunately this brand is not suitable for vegans.

Most Gardetto’s products contain cheddar, Parmesan, and Romano cheeses, butter, milk, whey, and buttermilk. Other flavors, such as their Original Recipe and Garlic Rye Chips, also contain questionable ingredients, such as sugar, molasses, and caramel color.

The cheeses, butter, milk, and whey are all clearly derived from animals and are therefore not vegan. The other ingredients might be plant based, but they may have been processed using animal products.

Refined sugar is often processed using bone char, which is made from animal bones, to make the sugar whiter. As a result, most refined sugars in the market are not vegan.

Molasses is a by-product of the sugar refining process and, as such, is not vegan either. Caramel color is also made using sugar that may have been processed with bone char.

Some vegans don’t mind bone char, others do. The best we can do is let you know a product is possibly filtered through bone char. Whether that violates your vegan ethics is up to you.

These ingredients make it clear that Gardetto’s is not vegan.

Is Gardetto’s Cruelty Free?

Yes. Gardetto’s is cruelty free.

Gardetto’s products are not tested on animals at any point in their production process nor do they contain ingredients that are routinely tested on animals, such as artificial colors.

Animal testing is a practice that needs to end. Innocent animals often end up disfigured, maimed, and even killed in the name of ensuring that products are safe for human use. There are many alternative methods that don’t involve animals and are just as effective, so there is no excuse for food brands to continue this cruel practice.

What Is Gardetto’s Made Of?

Here are the ingredients of Gardetto’s Original Recipe:

  • Enriched flour (wheat flour, niacin, iron, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid)
  • Vegetable oil (soybean, high oleic soybean, canola, and/or high oleic canola oil)
  • Rye flour
  • Salt
  • Yeast
  • Sugar
  • Monosodium glutamate
  • Corn syrup
  • Maltodextrin
  • Dried Worcestershire sauce (vinegar, molasses, corn syrup, salt, caramel color, garlic powder, sugar, spice, tamarind, natural flavor)
  • Baking soda
  • Barley malt extract
  • Caramel color
  • Onion powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Fumaric acid
  • Spice
  • Disodium inosinate
  • Disodium guanylate
  • Sodium diacetate
  • Freshness preserved by BHT

Let’s break down each ingredient of Gardetto’s:

Enriched flour

Enriched flour is wheat flour that has been enriched with nutrients, such as niacin, iron, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, and folic acid. Enriched wheat flour is vegan.

Vegetable oil

Vegetable oils are derived from plants. The oils used in Gardetto’s are soybean, high oleic soybean, canola, and/or high oleic canola oil. These oils are vegan.

Rye flour

Rye flour is wheat flour that is milled from rye berries. It is vegan.

Salt

Salt is a mineral used to add flavor or as a preservative. It is vegan.

Yeast

Yeast is a single-celled fungus. It is used as a leavening agent in baking. Yeast is vegan friendly.

Sugar

Sugar is a sweetener that is made from sugarcane or beets. It is technically vegan, but most sugars in the market are processed using bone char, which is made from animal bones. Unless the sugar is labeled “raw,” “organic,” or “unrefined,” it is probably not vegan friendly.

Monosodium glutamate

Monosodium glutamate is a salt that is used as a flavor enhancer. It is vegan.

Corn syrup

Corn syrup is a sugar that is made from corn starch. It is used as a sweetener. It is vegan.

Maltodextrin

Maltodextrin is a carbohydrate that is made from maltose. Maltose is a type of sugar that is made from starch. Maltodextrin is vegan.

Dried Worcestershire sauce

Worcestershire sauce is a sauce that is used as a condiment. Gardetto’s dried Worcestershire sauce is made of vinegar, molasses, corn syrup, salt, caramel color, garlic powder, sugar, spice, tamarind, and natural flavor.

Vinegar is a liquid that is made from the fermentation of ethanol. It is vegan.

Molasses is a by-product of the sugar refining process. It is not considered vegan if it is processed with bone char.

Caramel color is a food coloring that is made from caramelized sugar. Caramel color is also likely not vegan because it could be processed with bone char.

Garlic powder is a seasoning that is made from ground garlic. It is vegan.

Spice is a seasoning that is made from dried and ground spices. It is vegan.

Tamarind is a fruit that is used as a flavoring. It is vegan.

Natural flavor is a flavoring that is made from natural plant and animal sources. It can be vegan or not depending on its source.

Baking soda

Baking soda is a leavening agent that is used in baking. It is vegan friendly.

Barley malt extract

Barley malt extract is a flavoring that is made from barley malt. It is vegan friendly.

Onion powder

Onion powder is a seasoning that is made from ground onions. It is vegan friendly.

Fumaric acid

Fumaric acid is an organic compound that is used as a flavor enhancer. It is vegan friendly.

Disodium inosinate

Disodium inosinate is a salt that is used as a flavor enhancer. It is vegan friendly.

Disodium guanylate

Disodium guanylate is a salt that is used as a flavor enhancer. It is vegan friendly.

Sodium diacetate

Sodium diacetate is a salt that is used as a flavor enhancer. It is vegan friendly.

BHT

BHT or butylated hydroxytoluene is a preservative. It is vegan friendly.

Why Isn’t Gardetto’s Vegan?

Gardetto’s are unfortunately not vegan because they contain milk, cheddar, Parmesan, romano cheese, whey, butter, and buttermilk which are all animal products as well as questionable ingredients such as sugar, molasses, and caramel color.

Is Gardetto’s Pizzeria Snack Mix Vegan?

No. Gardetto’s Pizzeria contains sugar, Romano cheese, and dried buttermilk.

This snack mix is not safe for vegan consumption.

Is Gardetto’s Chipotle Cheddar Snack Mix Vegan?

No. Gardetto’s Chipotle Cheddar contains sugar, cheddar cheese, buttermilk powder, whey powder, and milk.

This snack mix is not safe for vegan consumption.

Is Gardetto’s Spicy Italian Snack Mix Vegan?

No. Gardetto’s Spicy Italian Snack Mix contains sugar and Parmesan cheese.

This snack mix is not safe for vegan consumption.

Is Gardetto’s Italian Cheese Blend Snack Mix Vegan?

No. Gardetto’s Pizzeria contains sugar, buttermilk powder, whey, cheddar & Romano cheeses, butter, and milk.

This snack mix is not safe for vegan consumption.

Are Gardetto’s Garlic Rye Chips Vegan?

No. Gardetto’s Roasted Garlic Rye Chips contain sugar, molasses, and caramel color.

This snack mix may not be safe for vegan consumption.

Vegan Alternatives to Gardetto’s Snack Mix

If you’re in the mood for a cheesy snack, there are plenty of vegan options available. Here are some of my favorites:

These pretzels are all vegan and just as delicious (if not more so) than Gardetto’s. So if you’re looking for a vegan snack option, any of these pretzels would be a great choice. You don’t have to miss out on Gardetto’s just because you’re vegan.

Final Words

So, there you have it! Gardetto’s is not safe for the vegan community, but there are plenty of delicious vegan alternatives that will satisfy your cravings. So the next time you’re in the mood for a snack, reach for one of these vegan pretzels instead. You won’t be disappointed!