Are Rold Gold Pretzels Vegan?

Call them hard pretzels, call them a salty snack that you usually find in snack bowls all the time, but are Rold Gold pretzels vegan? The answer is yes, they usually are.

Still, there are a few flavors to consider. We are going to take a closer look at their ingredients, and see what the best vegan options are.


The traditional recipe consists only of flour, water, and salt, but as any ingredient list will show you, this is rarely the case anymore. 

The ingredients list for Rold Gold Pretzels Original Flavor reads as follows:

Enriched flour (WHEAT flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), salt, corn syrup, corn oil, malt extract, yeast, and ammonium bicarbonate.

It is easy to see that as a vegan, there are no problematic ingredients to be concerned about in Rold Gold Pretzels. 

However, there are other variants to consider, so let’s take a close look at their other products to see if they are vegan friendly as well. 

Original Fat-Free Pretzels

The ingredient profile here is only slightly different, meaning the amount of each ingredient is likely to be the biggest difference. The ingredients are as follows:

Enriched Flour (Wheat Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Salt, Corn Oil, Corn Syrup, Ammonium Bicarbonate, and Malt Extract. 

Again, there is nothing to be concerned about as a vegan, so these can be enjoyed by anyone following a plant-based diet.

Cheddar Flavor Tiny Twists

Anything that is cheddar flavored should always be treated with caution so it is no surprise to see that this version is not vegan. They come in “Tiny Twists” form only and there are several ingredients that make this unsuitable:

Enriched Flour (Wheat Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Salt, Corn Oil, Corn Syrup, Maltodextrin (Made from Corn), Whey, Cheddar Cheese (Milk, Cheese Cultures, Salt, Enzymes), Monosodium Glutamate, Sunflower Oil, Lactose, Natural and Artificial Flavors, Onion Powder, Blue Cheese (Milk, Cheese Cultures, Salt, Enzymes), Corn Syrup Solids, Skim Milk, Ammonium Bicarbonate, Malt Extract, Yeast, Citric Acid, Buttermilk, Lactic Acid, Artificial Color (Yellow 5, Yellow 6), Garlic Powder, Spices, Sodium Caseinate, Disodium Inosinate, and Disodium Guanylate. 

Whey, cheddar cheese, milk, cheese cultures, blue cheese, skim milk, and buttermilk are all dairy products.

Dairy is problematic to a vegan because of the use of dairy cows, and their mistreatment. They are often taken away from their newborn calves on the first day, robbing them of their natural desire to feed and care for their young.

They are injected with hormones to speed up the milk-producing process and are continually inseminated to ensure that they lactate for 10 months after. 

With so many questions of ethics surrounding dairy cows, it is no wonder many stay clear of dairy, even those who aren’t strictly vegan.

Honey Wheat 

Available in the “braided” version only, they contain honey (of course). This makes them unsuitable for many vegans as it is an animal-derived ingredient. However, some will turn a blind eye to this.

The ingredient profile reads as follows:

Enriched Flour (Wheat Flour, Niacin, Reduced Iron, Thiamin Mononitrate, Riboflavin, Folic Acid), Whole Wheat Flour, Sugar, Honey, Corn Oil, Salt, and Ammonium Bicarbonate. 

Any vegan will look to avoid the common animal-derived ingredients such as dairy, meat, and eggs, but many will keep the same standard when it comes to insects. It is another case of an animal being exploited for what it can produce.

Removing honey from a beehive leaves the bees vulnerable. They may not have the proper food stored to make it through the cold months which is one of the reasons many vegans avoid honey.

How They’re Made

The process of making any pretzels is simple, and an age-old process. Some say it is the oldest snack in history.

The ingredients are mixed in large vats in factory compounders before being left to ferment for a short time. After this, it is moved onto a hopper which feeds it into the equipment that turns it into unique twisted shapes. The pretzels are still soft when they are transferred along the production line and cooked on a wire mesh belt. 

Other Vegan Brands

Although the Rold Gold Pretzels are vegan, there are some wholesome alternatives available from the following brands:

Real Food From The Ground Up, Cauliflower Pretzels

Being vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO, and a little healthier than regular pretzels, these tick a lot of boxes. They are made from the following ingredients:

Cassava cauliflower, non-GMO corn starch, non-GMO expeller pressed canola oil, vegetable blend (spinach, broccoli, carrot, tomato, beet, shitake mushroom yeast. 

Unique Snacks – Extra Dark Splits Delicious Vegan Pretzels

Using only a handful of ingredients, these vegan pretzels still manage to be big on flavor. They are purposely well done to bring out flavors without burning the pretzels on the inside. 

A simple ingredient profile is often a good sign and theirs reads as follows:

Unbleached wheat flour, sunflower oil, salt, soda, and yeast.

Final Word

Hard pretzels are an excellent choice of vegan savory snack since they have a simple ingredient profile, and there isn’t a lot that can be done to make them unsuitable for a plant-based diet.

Still, some flavors manage to include dairy and honey, but with numerous vegan-friendly brands making it easier to eat cruelty-free, crunchy pretzels will seemingly always be on the menu.

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