Is Knorr Chicken Bouillon Vegan and Cruelty-Free?

July 22, 2023

Identifying whether or not Knorr Chicken Bouillon is vegan is quite a challenging task. Chicken bouillon sounds like an ingredient for making chicken broth, but you still never know these days what’s vegan or not. 

This difficulty is primarily due to manufacturers often veiling the exact nature and sources of their ingredients. 

However, fear not, for this article aims to uncover the truth and assist you in your noble pursuit of a vegan lifestyle.

Is Knorr Chicken Bouillon Vegan?

No, Knorr Chicken Bouillon is not vegan. Not surprisingly, this is due to specific ingredients that it contains — namely, chicken and chicken by-products. Knorr Chicken Bouillon includes chicken fat and chicken meat — both animal-derived ingredients, which are inherently non-vegan.

Is Knorr Chicken Bouillon Cruelty-Free?

Regrettably, Knorr Chicken Bouillon is not cruelty-free either. The presence of chicken fat and chicken meat in its composition indicates that animals were used and likely harmed in its production, contradicting the core principles of a cruelty-free product. Indeed, chicken farming can hardly be called cruelty-free.

What Is Knorr Chicken Bouillon Made Of?

Knorr Chicken Bouillon is a popular ingredient in many recipes, known for its savory, concentrated chicken flavor. But have you ever wondered what exactly goes into this product to give it its rich, versatile taste? 

Let’s delve into the composition of Knorr Chicken Bouillon, breaking down each ingredient, its origin, and role in the product, as well as its suitability for vegan diets.

Knorr Chicken Bouillon primarily contains the following ingredients:

  • Salt
  • Monosodium glutamate
  • Cornstarch
  • Sugar
  • Chicken fat
  • Hydrolyzed corn protein
  • Dried chicken meat
  • Natural flavor
  • Yeast extract
  • Disodium inosinate
  • Disodium guanylate
  • Turmeric


Salt, or sodium chloride, is a mineral harvested from seawater or mined from rock salt deposits. It’s used in food preparation worldwide and is an essential part of the human diet. In Knorr Chicken Bouillon, salt enhances the other flavors and helps preserve the product. Salt is a vegan ingredient.

Monosodium glutamate

Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is a flavor enhancer derived from the fermentation of natural sugars, similar to the process of making yogurt or vinegar. MSG contributes to the umami (savory) taste in the bouillon. It is considered vegan because it is not sourced from animal products.


Cornstarch is a carbohydrate extracted from corn. It is used as a thickening agent in the bouillon, helping to give it a rich, satisfying consistency. Cornstarch is a plant-based ingredient and thus vegan friendly.


Sugar is a sweetener derived from either sugarcane or sugar beet. It adds a subtle sweetness to the bouillon, balancing the savory and salty flavors. Sugar can be vegan, but some sugars are processed using bone char from animals, so it may not always be considered vegan.

Chicken fat

Chicken fat is obtained from rendering chicken parts. It provides a rich, authentic chicken flavor to the bouillon. Because it is derived from an animal source, chicken fat is not vegan.

Hydrolyzed corn protein

Hydrolyzed corn protein is a flavor enhancer made from the protein in corn kernels. It contributes to the savory, umami taste of the bouillon. It is vegan friendly because it comes from plants.

Dried chicken meat

Dried chicken meat is dehydrated chicken that adds a strong, concentrated chicken flavor to the bouillon. It comes from chicken, so it is not suitable for a vegan diet.

Natural flavor

“Natural Flavor” is a catch-all term for flavorings derived from plant or animal sources. In the context of Knorr Chicken Bouillon, it’s likely that the natural flavorings are not vegan as they may come from chicken or other animal sources.

Yeast extract

Yeast extract is a flavor enhancer derived from yeast, a type of fungi. It adds a savory, umami taste to the bouillon. Because it’s sourced from fungi, it is considered vegan.

Disodium inosinate

Disodium inosinate is a flavor enhancer that works synergistically with MSG to boost the umami taste of the bouillon. It can be derived from various sources, including animals, but can also be produced from bacteria, making its vegan status uncertain without further information.

Disodium guanylate

Disodium guanylate is a flavor enhancer used in conjunction with MSG and disodium inosinate to enhance the umami taste. It’s often derived from fish or seaweed, but can also be produced from yeast. The vegan status of this ingredient would depend on its source.


Turmeric is a spice derived from the root of the turmeric plant. It adds color and a subtle earthy flavor to the bouillon. Turmeric is plant based and therefore vegan.

Vegan Alternatives to Knorr Chicken Bouillon

While Knorr Chicken Bouillon may not fit into a vegan diet, there are numerous brand alternatives that can still add a rich flavor and savory taste to your vegan dishes. Some categories of products that could be used include vegetable bouillon, miso paste, soy sauce, and vegetable broth. Specific examples of vegan alternatives include:

  • Knorr Bouillon Vegetable cubes: Click here for more info.
  • Better Than Bouillon Vegetable Base: Click here for more info.
  • Hikari Miso Organic Miso Paste: Click here for more info.
  • Bragg Liquid Aminos (a soy sauce substitute): Click here for more info.


In conclusion, Knorr Chicken Bouillon is neither vegan nor cruelty-free, primarily due to the inclusion of chicken fat and chicken meat. 

However, you don’t need animal products to make a flavorful broth. A multitude of vegan food alternatives exist that can impart the same savory flavor and depth to your cooking, making your vegan lifestyle both delicious and ethical. 

Remember, your choices matter — for your health, the animals, and our planet.