Is Vinegar Vegan?

Another Question submitted from our Question Form that we are happy to answer.

The short answer is, yes, almost always vinegar is vegan.

Vinegar comes in many varieties and is made by fermenting ethanol into aceyic acid.  This starts with a plant base (grapes, apples, barley) which is then fermented or distilled into wine, beer or malt, and then further fermented to yield a vinegar. Vinegars can also be infused with fruits and herbs which enhance their flavor profiles.

The only animal based exception I found is honey vinegar, which would not be vegan as honey is used as the flavoring agent. However, honey vinegar is fairly rare, at least here in the US and will likely be labeled specifically.

Vinegars are a great way to add and enhance flavors of food without adding extra fats. A good balsamic vinegar is a great complement to many vegetable dishes and fruit vinegars make excellent companions for crisp leafy greens. White vinegar makes an excellent environmentally friendly cleaning agent for everything from the laundry to the kitchen sink.

6 comments for “Is Vinegar Vegan?

  1. August 9, 2011 at 9:57 am

    Hi, being vegan and knowing that not all yeast is made from sugar or plant base a necessary ingredient for vinegars and wines, how do I find or what company makes vegan vinegar taking my concern of the yeast factor into considerations along with Sorbitan monosterate present in yeast which can be corn based or animal based thanking-you in anticipation

    • @isitvegan
      August 10, 2011 at 10:04 pm

      I’d suggest you check out barnivore.com for all your wine needs. As for the vinegars, you are probably going to have to ask individual producers, one company at a time. If you have any specific product questions, hit us up!

  2. May 26, 2012 at 4:39 am

    Many (if not most) wines use animal products in the winemaking process. Does anyone know if this is made also in the process of making vinegar? Since vinegar is basically wine that fermented for a longer period of time…

  3. Simone
    April 20, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    During the “fining” process in winemaking, fish and animal products such as egg albumen, blood and bone marrow and gelatin are used to clarify the liquid. These agents bind to protein residue in the liquid and makes for easy removal via filtration. Normally the label states that sulphites are present ( indicative of egg). I would think that vinegar made from wine ie. Balsamic vinegar etc, would have undergone the same process. I’m not yet sure myself. Hoping someone else has definitive info. Here is a lnk to winemaking info: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/03/24/is-wine-vegan_n_6924570.html

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