Shopping Tips

Shopping can initially feel a little different as a vegan but don’t worry! As you’ll realise from my Cupboard Essentials page a lot of ingredient’s you’ll be buying stay the same but of course, some will change a bit.

Once you’ve found your veggies and base ingredients etc the best place to start is in the ‘Plant based & Vegetarian’ and ‘Free From’ sections of the supermarket. However, as these sections cater for vegetarians and for people with gluten and other intolerances too, you need to be careful not to pick something with egg or milk in.

When you pick something up in the shop the first thing you want to check for is a vegan label; if it has one you can be sure that this is fine to eat. If not have a look for a vegetarian label to be sure there’s no meat derivatives in it, and then take a look at the ingredient list. The obvious thing to check for is milk and eggs…they will often be in bold because they are allergens, which makes them really easy to spot. If you can’t see any of these, the last thing to check for are the ingredients below.

• ALBUMIN – protein in eggs
• CASEIN – milk protein
• COLLAGEN – skin/bones/tendons
• ELASTIN – neck of cows
• GELATINE/ASPIC – tendons/skin/bones
• HONEY – made by bees
• INSINGLASS – dried fish bladders
• KERATIN – skin/tissues/bones
• LACTOSE – a sugar in milk
• LARD/TALLOW – animal fat
• PEPSIN – pig stomachs
• PROPOLIS – bees use this for their hives
• ROYAL JELLY – secretion of a honeybee’s glands
• SHELLAC – insect bodies
• VITAMIN D3/ COD LIVER Oil – Fish oil
• WHEY – milk product

• E120 – (Cochineal & Carmine) created by crushing insects
• E542 – bone phosphate
• E613 – produced from meat
• E901 – Beeswax
• E904 – Shellac (from beetles)
• E913 – Lanolin secreted from woolly animals
• E966 – Lactitol/Lactose
• E1105 – from eggs
• E910/E920/E921 – I-cytosine from hair/feathers

It’s such a shame that manufacturers include these ingredients but checking packets will get easier with time as it just becomes a habit. But don’t worry if you accidentally eat one of these ingredients…everyone makes mistakes…even people who have been vegan for ages. 

(At first, I had no idea about some of these ingredients and its pretty difficult to remember the whole list…I keep a screenshot of this list on my notes page so if I see something unfamiliar I can quickly check it out).