Just because you follow a vegan diet doesn’t mean that you won’t miss the flavor of chicken from time to time. However, many people don’t know whether artificial chicken can be considered vegan or not.
It’s a difficult question to answer, as there are plenty of different companies that make artificial chicken flavor, and they will all have different ingredients lists and processes of making the flavoring.
Some artificial chicken flavoring contains dairy or egg products and is therefore not vegan-friendly. However, others are completely fine to be consumed while following a vegan diet.
Many artificial flavors do not contain an ingredients list, so it can be difficult to know whether they’re vegan or not. Below we will be looking at two different types of artificial chicken flavor to see whether they are vegan-friendly or not, as well as one type of artificially flavored chicken noodles.
Kent Artificially Flavored Chicken Bouillon Stock
The Amazon page of Kent Artificially Flavored Chicken Bouillon Stock shows that this is an artificial chicken flavor with an ingredient list containing the following:
- Potassium Phosphates
- Disodium Inosinate
- Natural Identical Flavoring Substances
All of these are considered vegan, except perhaps Natural Identical Flavoring Substances. These can be sourced from multiple different sources, so we cannot be sure whether they are all vegan-friendly or not. Whether this is enough to put you off of this artificial flavoring is up to your personal preference.
1972 US Patent - Artificial Chicken Flavor
In 1972 a patent for Artificial Chicken Flavor was submitted by Marcel Andre Perret of Florasynth Inc. Once it was granted, the patent became public knowledge and can now be read by the public. Below is an excerpt of the patent:
“The artificial chicken flavor composition of the invention is a combination of a hexose, a bland protein hydrolysate, an arachidonic acid compound, such as arachidonic acid, or methyl and/or ethyl arachidonate, or a mixture of any thereof, and cysteine and/or cystine, or a non-toxic acid addition salt thereof.”
All of these ingredients are made up of chemical compounds and therefore we cannot be certain of where they have come from. However, it seems as though they all have possible plant-based origins while others might also have animal-based origins.
With that being said, we cannot be sure that these do or do not have animal-derived products within them. For now, we will give them the benefit of the doubt and think of the flavoring as vegan-friendly.
Another excerpt of the patent is as follows:
“In addition to the above ingredients, which are essential ingredients of the compositions of the invention, there can also be employed flavor-enhancing ingredients of conventional types, such as monosodium glutamate, Mertaste (5′-inosinic acid and 5′-guanylic acid), spices of various types, ribonucleotides, vegetable oils, and lactose. These are added in small amounts, according to taste, and any or all of these can be included.”
Well, that was short-lived. The appearance of lactose shows that dairy products have been used within the Artificial Chicken Flavoring and therefore cannot be considered vegan-friendly.
Are Samyang Spicy Chicken Noodles Vegan?
These noodles are considered some of the ‘spiciest noodles in the world’ and therefore have become widely sought after by daredevils all over the world. They are also flavored with artificial chicken flavoring, but are these noodles vegan?
While the ingredients list does not contain any animal-derived ingredients directly, it does still contain artificial chicken flavor and lecithin, which is sometimes derived from egg yolks.
In 2017, a YouTuber called oh, stephyy got in touch with Samyang Food to answer this question once and for all. The reply stated that the noodles did not contain any meat or animal ingredients.
So, this would show that the Samyang Spicy Chicken Noodles are considered vegan-friendly.
Artificial chicken flavor can come from both plant and animal-based sources, meaning that artificial chicken flavor cannot always be considered vegan-friendly. The term ‘artificial’ indicates that no real meat products have been used to create the flavor, so they are likely to be considered vegan.
However, there is still some ambiguity to the question. Ultimately, the only way to completely know whether an artificial chicken flavor is vegan or not is to talk directly to the company.