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Food Ingredients


Sikh’s refrain from eating any meat products including eggs and fish.

Here is a list of ingredients that could be non-vegetarian, therefore non-offerable to Guru Ji (in a Gurdwara) or the Sangat. In general, devotees only offer lacto-vegetarian items (no meat, fish, or eggs). When in doubt about some specific item, you can always contact the manufacturer. The following are NOT suitable for a vegetarian diet!

Calcium stearate Emulsifiers EnzymesFatty acids, Gelatin, Magnesium stearate, Mono and diglycerides, Monostearates Oleic acid OleinPalmitin, Palmitic acid, Pepsin, Polysorbates, Rennet, Stabilizers, Stearic acid, Stearin, Tween.

In the United Kingdom, the following "E" numbers are non-vegetarian:

120, 140, 141, 153, 161-161g, 252, 280, 322, 352, 385, 404, 422, 430-436, 450, 470-478, 481-483, 491-495, 509, 516, 526, 540, 542, 545, 552, 570, 572, 623, 627, 631, 635, 904. Plus glycerol, glycine, glyceryl, glycerol triacetate, leucine, oxystearin, spermaceti, and vitamin D3.

List of Hidden Animal Ingredients


What It Is

Its Use


The protein component of egg whites. Albumin is also found in animal blood, milk, plants, and seeds.

To thicken or add texture to processed foods.


Small, silvery fish of herring family.

Worcestershire sauce, Caesar salad dressing, pizza topping, Greek salads.

Animal shortening

Butter, suet, lard (see lard below).

Packaged cookies and crackers, refried beans, flour tortillas, ready-made pie crusts.

Carmine (carmine, cochineal, or carminic acid)

Red coloring made from a ground-up insect.

Bottled juices, colored pasta, some candies, frozen pops, “natural” cosmetics.

Calcium stearate

Mineral typically derived from cows or hogs

Garlic salt, vanilla, meat tenderizers, salad-dressing mixes.

Capric acid (decanoic acid)

Animal fats

added to ice cream, candy, baked goods, chewing gum, liquor and often not specified on ingredients lists.

Casein (caseinate)

A milk protein. It coagulates with the addition of rennin (see rennin below) and is the foundation of cheese.

An additive in dairy products such as cheese, cream cheese, cottage cheese, and sour cream. Also used in adhesives, paints, and plastics.

Clarifying agent

Derived from any number of animal sources.

Used to filter wine, vinegar, beer, fruit juice, soft drinks.


Protein from bones, cartilage, tendons, and skin of animals, Much of the commercial gelatin is a by-product of pig skin.

Marshmallows, yogurt, frosted cereals, gelatin-containing desserts, molded salads..

Glucose (dextrose)

Fruits or animal tissues and fluids.

Baked goods, soft drinks, candies, frosting.

Glycerides (mono-, di-, and triglycerides)

Glycerol from animal fats or plants.

Processed foods, cosmetics, perfumes, lotions, inks, glues, automobile antifreeze. Used as emulsifier.


Gelatin from air bladder of sturgeon and other freshwater fish.

Clarify alcoholic beverages and in some jellied desserts. Rarely used now.

Lactylic stearate

Salt of stearic acid (see stearic acid below).

Dough conditioner.


Waxy fat from sheep's wool.

Chewing gum, ointments, cosmetics, waterproof coatings.


Rendered and clarified pork fat. Often fat from abdomens of pigs or the fat around the animal's kidneys.

Baked goods.


Phospholipids from animal tissues, plants, lentils, and egg yolks used to preserve, emulsify, and moisturize food.

Cereal, candy, chocolate, baked goods, margarine, vegetable oil sprays, cosmetics, and ink.


Deep yellow coloring from marigolds or egg yolks.

Commercial food coloring.

Myristic acid (tetradecanoic acid)

Animal fats.

Chocolate, ice cream, candy, jelled desserts, baked goods.

Natural flavorings

Unspecified, could be from meat or other animal products

Processed and packaged foods.

Oleic acid (oleinic acid)

Animal tallow (see tallow below)

Synthetic butter, cheese, vegetable fats and oils, spice flavoring for baked goods, candy, ice cream, beverages, condiments, soaps, cosmetics.

Palmatic acid

Animal or vegetable fats.

Baked goods, butter and cheese flavoring.

Pancreatin (pancreatic extract)

Cows or hogs

Digestive aids.


Enzyme from pigs' stomachs

With rennet to make cheese.


Resinous cement collected by bees

Food supplement and ingredient in "natural" toothpaste.

Rennin (Rennet)

A coagulating enzyme obtained from a young animal's stomach, usually a calf's stomach

Rennin is used to curdle milk in foods such as cheese and junket–a soft pudding like dessert.

Royal jelly

Substance produced by glands of bees.

"Natural foods" and nutrient supplements.

Sodium stearoyl lactylate

May be derived from cows, hogs, animal milk, or vegetable-mineral sources.

Used in cake, pudding, or pancake mixes, baked goods, margarine.

Stearic acid (octadecenoic acid)

Tallow, other animal fats and oils

Vanilla flavoring, chewing gum, baked goods, beverages, candy, soaps, ointments, candles, cosmetics, suppositories and pill coatings.


Hard white fat around kidneys and loins of animals

Margarine, mincemeat, pastries, bird feed, tallow.


Solid fat of sheep and cattle separated from the membranous tissues

Waxed paper, margarine, soaps, crayons, candles, rubber, cosmetics.

Vitamin A (A1, retinol)

Vitamin obtained from vegetables, egg yolks, or fish liver oil.

Vitamin supplements, fortification of foods, "natural" cosmetics.

Vitamin B12

Vitamin produced by microorganisms and found in all animal products; synthetic form (cyanocobalamin or cobalamin on labels) is vegan

Supplements or fortified foods.

Vitamin D (D1, D2, D3)

D1 is produced by humans upon exposure to sunlight; D2 (ergocalciferol) is made from plants or yeast, D3 (cholecalciferol comes from fish liver oils or lanolin

Supplements or fortified foods.

Ignorance is no excuse, please educate yourselves on foods and products you use.

Adapted from: The Complete Idiot's Guide to Being Vegetarian by Suzanne Havala, M.S., R.D., F.A.D.A., Food Lover's Companion by Sharon Tyler Herbst, The Vegan Sourcebook External Link Icon by Joanne Stepaniak, M.S.Ed.

More Details about E Numbers: https://vegsoc.org/info-hub/veggie-need-to-know/e-numbers/ External Link Icon

Cadbury's Heros (limited edition) now contain miniature Toblerones which are not suitable for pure vegetarians as they contain egg. It is unsure at the moment if they will continue to put Toberlone in Heros chocolate boxes.

Forward Amazing Moringa - Medicinal, edible and easy to grow.

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