Junk food! Oh, how we hate to love it!
You won’t see a lot of junk food posts on this blog (well, hardly any) but it’s that time for my monthly junk food binge. You know what I mean, ladies! 🙊
From chips to candies, we all get cravings for something bad every once in a while (if that’s wrong, then I don’t want to be right!). Whether it’s movie night, road trip time, you’re up late studying hard or just want to treat yourself, there are plenty of vegetarian friendly options for junk food!
Don’t get me wrong, I love sticking to a clean diet, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t also enjoy indulging in junk every now and then. But with complicated ingredient lists and varieties, it’s sometimes hard to tell what’s really vegetarian friendly or not. In fact, when I first became a vegetarian, I wasn’t quite sure how many of my favorite, go-to snacks I’d have to give up. However, after some research and label studying, I’ve got a pretty good list of junk food I still enjoy.
So here are a couple of classic junk food options you’ll be happy to know are actually vegetarian friendly!
1. Ramen Noodles
Ramen noodles are the king of junk food! Who hasn’t lived off of Ramen at one time or another?? (I’m looking at you, college kiddos!) But there’s sometimes a lot of confusion around Ramen noodles. So let me set the record straight.
Ramen noodles are actually vegan. It’s the flavor packets that you need to be careful about. But there are two instant ramen flavors that are veggie friendly: Oriental and Chili. But make sure you buy the Top Ramen brand, otherwise read the label very carefully!
2. Taco Bell
Taco Bell: the fast food mecca for vegetarians (and Saturday night partiers). Fast food is definitely a junk food classic and Taco Bell is both cheap and you can make almost any of their menu items vegetarian friendly by substituting meat for beans. But there’s a lot of misinformation floating around (especially on YouTube) about Taco Bell’s vegetarian friendly options.
The biggest misconception about Taco Bell is that their potatoes are veggie friendly. They are not! According to their website, the majority of their fried options are not vegetarian friendly, simply meat free. Menu items such as chips and potatoes are fried in the same oil as their meat options. So next time you’re at Taco Bell, I’d suggest ordering a 7 layer burrito instead of the spicy potato taco.
3. Lay’s Potato Chips
Junk food doesn’t get much more classic than potato chips! And Lay’s are definitely the most popular option. So good news! The majority of Lay’s potato chips are vegetarian friendly, and they even have vegan friendly options, such as Classic and Salt & Vinegar.
4. Fruit Roll-Ups
90s kids rejoice! Fruit roll-ups are vegetarian friendly! And, I’m happy to report that Fruit by the Foot and Gushers are vegetarian friendly as well! PETA even lists Fruit by the Foot as vegan (I’ll have to do more research as to if these other varieties are vegan friendly as well).
These fruit snacks use fruit pectin instead of gelatin as their ingredients, which means these lovely fruit snack staples are free and clear of those pesky animal bones that like to hide in our favorite foods.
5. Sour Patch Kids
Yep, this classic sour candy is vegetarian friendly! It’s hard to tell what foods have gelatin in them to give them their chewy texture. But a quick scan of Sour Patch Kids’ food label will show you these deliciously sour then sweet candies are completely vegetarian friendly!
6. Hunt’s Snack Pack Puddings
While definitely not healthy, these lunch box staples are technically vegetarian friendly. However, if you avoid Palm Oil, this product is definitely not for you! From what I could find, both chocolate and vanilla flavors are vegetarian friendly, so feel free to get a variety pack!
And if you’re vegan looking for a good pudding option, Jell-O’s pudding is vegan friendly!
As always, make sure you check the labels of your favorite snacks! Recipes and ingredients are notorious for changing. Also, not all brands/varieties are created equal.
If you see anything that is incorrect or have any vegetarian-friendly junk food staples to add, feel free to let me know in the comments below!