If you are from America, then you know what the favorite type of cracker is for everyone in the country, regardless of state or city affiliation. Graham Crackers.
No one knows really why we love these little crackers so much or why we buy so many of them, but you can bet your bottom dollar that should an apocalypse come, one of the foods that people will have long after the reckoning is graham crackers.
However, this doesn’t mean that everyone could eat them at will. Graham Crackers are so ubiquitous that not many people bother to look up what is even in their ingredient list.
If you are a vegan, though, you generally have to look at every food label to understand exactly what is inside, or you could end up eating animal products unintentionally.
So, are Graham Crackers Vegan? Are they dairy-free?
The Vegetarian History Of Graham Crackers
Surprisingly, Graham Crackers have a fairly interesting history that could answer this question quite well. See, the Graham Cracker was a snack that was inspired by the teachings of a Presbyterian minister known as Sylvester Graham.
He is most well known for being a part of the temperance movement – a movement that tried to force through the abstinence of alcohol during a time when its consumption was destroying families – and as a dietary reformer.
This second one is the most crucial to the story of Graham Crackers, as the primary message he spread for people to be vegetarian – ‘as God intended’ in his words. For all Sylvester Graham’s good messages, it is important to note he had some bizarre and some awful ones as well.
His preaching was really noticed until the cholera epidemic between 1829 and 1851. Since it was a message that spread good health and good diets, people began to pay attention and thus his followers the Grahamites were born.
This became one of the earliest vegetarian movements in the United States, and they set about making many vegetarian products after their founder, including the Graham Cracker.
It should be noted that Sylvester Graham didn’t invent or profit from any of these inventions, much to his credit.
By 1851, Graham Crackers had become so popular that they were even mentioned in Herman Melville’s epic ‘Moby Dick’. Nowadays, they are everywhere and so many brands make different varieties that it is hard to imagine a world without them.
Graham Crackers: Vegan Or Not?
Graham Crackers are a sweet and slightly cinnamon flavored cracker that typically uses enriched flour, graham flour, oil, molasses, and salt in its production. This means that Graham Crackers are almost certainly dairy-free at the very least.
Yet, saying they’re vegan might be a bit of a stretch, as whether they are vegan or not depends on the brand they are sold under. This is because some brands use honey as a sweetener to the product themselves.
Since honey is made by honeybees, it is an animal product and so it is generally not considered vegan.
With that in mind, we decided to create a list of the most vegan friendly Graham Cracker brands, so you don’t have to sift through them at the supermarket:
The most popular and probably the best vegan kind of Graham Crackers are the Nabisco Original Graham Crackers. Nabisco is one of the largest producers of cookies and other snacks foods in the world, with their bakery in Chicago being the largest of its kind in the world.
Its product line includes other favorites, like Belvita, and some completely vegan products, like Oreos – even if they aren’t comfortable saying they are vegan, we know they are. As such, they have kept up this tradition, and they make vegan graham crackers as well.
You’ve got to love a company that has been in the game for 170 years and charm the hair off you with their adorable mascots. But what’s even better is that Keebler’s Graham Crackers are completely vegan, using no animal products whatsoever in their production.
If you are also looking to make a vegan pie, then we will offer Graham Cracker Ready Pie Crust, which is also completely vegan.
Nairn’s Gluten Free Oat Grahams
For another type of Graham Cracker, we have to travel a bit back across the pond, all the way to Scotland in the northern British Isles. This country is known for its cookie and biscuit production, with its long history of making both.
The company of choice to go to for such treats is definitely Nairn’s, who are based in Edinburgh.
While all their Graham Crackers are gluten-free, there are three flavors that are suitable for vegans: Original, Stem Ginger, and Raisin.
The fourth flavor, Chocolate Chip, that they have available is said to be suitable for vegetarians, but since it may contain traces of milk, it might not be good for vegans.
Kinnikinnick’s Smoreables Graham Style Cookies
Kinnikinnick’s mission has always been to provide gluten-free products to people, since at the time of their first production, there were very few products out there that offered this.
Over time, this has evolved to also offer products to other groups of people who have dietary restrictions as well.
Enter the Kinnikinnick’s Smoreables Graham Style Cookies. These Graham Crackers are not only gluten-free, but also completely vegan as well.
However, it is worth noting that although they are vegan, there is the potential for cross contamination with egg, since that is used in their other products as well.
Nabisco Teddy Grahams
Now, unfortunately those above and the list of what products are the best vegan Graham Crackers to buy if you are vegan, but there are other similar products out there that are very similar to Graham Crackers and just as delicious, like the Nabisco Teddy Grahams.
While the most popular flavor of Teddy Grahams is not vegan – the honey flavor – the other three flavors that Nabisco offer are completely vegan.
These include the cinnamon, chocolate chip, and chocolate flavors, which are absolutely delicious, and you should give it a try when you want.
Graham Cracker Brands To Avoid
With all the good brands out there, though, there are some Graham Crackers that you should almost certainly avoid if you want to remain on a vegan diet:
- Honey Maid.
- Annie’s Homegrown.
- Market Pantry in Target.
- Trader Joe’s.
- 365 Everyday Value.
The original purpose of Graham Crackers was to be vegetarian, so there should always be a vegetarian option out there for you to find. If you are struggling, follow the brands on this list, and you will find what you are looking for.