Are Jelly Beans Vegan?

Are Jelly Beans Vegan

If you like jelly beans and are vegan or thinking of going vegan, you have probably been wondering whether the rainbow-colored candies are vegan or not.

In this guide, you will learn how these candies fare on our “is it vegan” check.

What’s In It?

Depending on the sourcing of the ingredients that make up the candies, jelly beans can be vegan. However, non-vegan ingredients are present in the majority of jelly beans available on the market.

To create jelly beans, manufacturers often use a wide variety of ingredients to give the candy different appearances and flavors. However, there are a few common ingredients that you will find in almost all jelly beans. These include:

  • Beeswax
  • Gelatin
  • Shellac
  • Confectioners’ glaze
  • Food coloring

Unfortunately, animal sources are associated in some shape or form with all the aforementioned components.

are jelly belly beans vegan

Arguably, the most controversial ingredient on the list is food coloring. Corporations generally use animals to test new food coloring variations or products. It is this aspect of the manufacturing process that draws much ire from those who are vegan for ethical reasons.

Similarly, another ingredient to look out for is confectioners’ glaze. This product helps to give jelly beans their characteristic shiny aesthetic. Most manufacturers will gravitate towards the version of the ingredient which includes diary. Fortunately, there are some versions of confectioners’ glaze which are vegan-friendly.

Is it Vegan or Not?

Jelly beans can be vegan or not.

The distinction depends entirely on the ingredients the manufacturer chooses to incorporate into the product.

Unfortunately, most popular commercial brands are not vegan-friendly. However, there are a handful of brands that make vegan jelly belly beans a possibility.

Jelly Bean Alternatives

Fortunately, if you are vegan or thinking of going vegan, there are a number of brands that provide vegan-friendly jelly bean alternatives.

One such example includes candies made by a company known as YumEarth. YumEarth creates its candies using ethically sourced organic ingredients, focusing on providing the market with clean treats. Their jelly beans effortlessly pass the vegan test. 

Other examples of vegan jelly bean brands include VeganSweets, Wonka, Jolly Rancher, and Warheads.

Finally, to ensure you are consuming a product that is in line with your personal principles, it is always advisable to inspect the ingredient list.


Marion is a Kenya-based freelance writer who covers a wide range of topics from politics and business to health and nutrition.

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