With so much focus on being healthier and eating fresh, “real” food, many people are turning to veganism. Some people do it for the health benefits, while others do it because of their love for animals – regardless of why they do it, it can still make finding a good beer hard sometimes. Why the trouble with beer? Vegans do not eat foods that come from animals, which extends far beyond just meat. We’re talking eggs, dairy, and sometimes foods that are processed using animal products, like refined white sugar…or occasionally, beer.
Beer seems like it would be vegan since it’s basically just water, hops, yeast and malt. However, breweries have been known to use animal products in the brewing process; they’re used as clarifying agents, and for things like coloring and head retention. Some of the more common animal products used in the production of beer include gelatin, isinglass, casein, and even insects (they’re made into dyes for coloring). Sometimes it can be pretty hard to tell if a beer has non-vegan ingredients, so if you’re not sure, don’t hesitate to contact the brewery.
We checked out PETA’s website and there were a ton of great beers they’d recommend for vegans, so you definitely will never go thirsty. It’s also not just smaller craft breweries that are catering to vegans – you should be able to find a good selection at any bar you go to. Many Anheuser-Busch products are vegan including:
- Budweiser, Bud Light and Bud Dry
- Busch and Busch Light
- Michelob, Michelob Classic Dark, Michelob Dry, Michelob Light
Many beers from the following breweries are also vegan:
- Brasserie Dieu du Ciel Brewpub
- Bristol Brewing Company
- Elliot Bay Brewing Company
- Goose Island Beer Company
- Lagunitas Brewing Company
- Mad River Brewing Company
- North Coast Brewing Company
- Pennsylvania Brewing Company
- Sierra Nevada Brewing Company
What are some of the best vegan beers you’ve had?