If you’re looking for the best vegan breakfast cereals, or perhaps a vegan and gluten free cereal brand, then we have all of the information you need below.
Whether you’ve been following a vegan diet for a while and are looking to implement small changes to your diet, or slowly transitioning to a vegan lifestyle, breakfast is still the most important meal of the day.
Before I adopted the vegan lifestyle, I was used to having a big bowl of honey cereal and milk every morning, so I pretty much had to revise my entire routine.
In those days, finding healthy vegan cereal brands was rare, fortunately, now, things have changed for the better. With many more of us turning to plant-based and gluten-free lifestyles, brands have slowly adapted to bring us more suitable vegan alternatives.
In our comprehensive list below, we show you the best plant-based cereal brands on the market today (including gluten-free options), to help you kick start your day in the right way.
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If you want to learn what to look out for when browsing the cereal aisle in your local grocery store, scroll down below to read about commonly found non-vegan-friendly ingredients and additives. Otherwise, I’ll cut to the chase and let you in on our favorite vegan-friendly cereals!
Best Vegan Cereals
For those of you who aren’t concerned about a gluten-free diet, the following vegan cereal guide is for you. If, however, gluten isn’t your friend, scroll down for our recommendations for the best gluten-free vegan cereals.
BARBARA’S Puffins Peanut Butter Cereal is suitable for vegans and those following a Kosher diet. Although the cereal is pretty heavy on organic cane sugar, it is delicious and great for a treat, especially when alternated with healthier breakfast cereals.
The peanut butter flavored, crunchy corn pillows can be served with blueberries, bananas or other fresh fruits and are delicious with lashings of vegan yogurt with a smaller portion of the cereal sprinkled on top.
Other Vegan Cereal Options from Barbara’s Organic:
- Brown Rice Crisps Cereal
- Original Morning Oat Crunch
- Original Multigrain Spoonfuls
- Organic Corn Flakes
- Shredded Wheat Cereal
The products are manufactured in a facility that also processes milk, hazelnuts, coconut, almonds and wheat, so it’s always best to check if you feel this may cause you problems.
Nature’s Path Organic cereals are non-GMO and contain whole grains with Omega-3 rich flax seeds which have anti-inflammatory effects and are great for the brain and eyes.
The cereal is hearty, crunchy and delicious when served with almond milk or yogurt and fresh berries. The brand prides itself on being certified USDA Organic, vegan and kosher, and they don’t use any artificial flavors, colors or preservatives in their breakfast products.
They come in other flavors if you fancy a change, plus, they do contain wheat, therefore, may not be suitable for some diets. In addition, the cereals are produced in a facility that uses soy, peanuts and tree nuts.
Other Vegan Options from Nature’s Path:
- Peanut Butter Panda Puffs
- Pumpkin Seed & Flax Granola
- Smart Bran Cereal
- Choco Chimps Chocolate Cereal
- Dark Chocolate Keto Cereal
- Coconut and Cashew Butter Granola
These 14oz packs contain rolled oats combined with everything from chia seeds, dates and apples to coconut milk and cinnamon.
The containers are packed with vitamins and anti-oxidants and the oats are super easy to make. Simply mix in organic soy milk or oat milk at night and enjoy in the morning for a healthy breakfast!
You can use the breakfast oats in protein shakes with added fruit, prepare them as snack-style breakfast bars, or eat them as a bowl of cereal. They are high in protein – 15g per serving, low in sugar and are the perfect choice for breakfast if you’re looking for a slow release of energy throughout the day.
The great news is, the Amrita Overnight Protein Oats are allergen-friendly too. They are peanut, dairy, gluten, egg, soy and sesame free! They come in a range of flavors and are suitable for vegans.
Other Vegan Cereal Options from Amrita:
- Chocolate Coconut Overnight Protein Oats
- Blueberry Hemp Overnight Protein Oats
- Coconut Maple Overnight Protein Oats
Food for Life Ezekial 4:9 Spouted Grain Cereals are made with organic grains, seeds and legumes containing no artificial colors or refined sugar. This makes it the best vegan cereal for weight loss on our list.
The company says that ‘sprouting’ is the only way to release all the nutrients stored in these grains as beneficial enzymes are activated providing more protein and carbohydrates to keep you going throughout the day.
Their slow bake technique also helps to preserve them and retain all-important natural fibers your body needs. Ingredients of this particular cereal include nutritious goodies such as all organic sprouted wheat, malted barley, sprouted barley, sprouted millet, lentils, soybeans, spelt and sea salt.
It’s fair to say, this cereal may be too plain for some tastes, however, pair it with soy or rice milk, yogurt and fresh berries and it adds a different dynamic altogether.
The nutritional benefits of this cereal are the highest of any we have on the list of vegan cereals. You can purchase other flavors, too, if you want to mix up your breakfast menu a little! The cereal is suitable for age ranges 24 months and upwards.
Other Vegan Cereal Options from Food For Life:
Vegan and Gluten-Free Cereals
If you’re interested in discovering which cereals are vegan and gluten-free, look no further, we have four delicious vegan breakfast cereals below for you to choose from.
If you’re looking for a low sugar vegan cereal, Purely Elizabeth Ancient Grain Granola may tick all the boxes. It’s certified gluten free, vegan, non-GMO, and packed with nutritious ingredients including amaranth, quinoa and chia seeds to give you an energetic boost to start the day.
The superfood infused grains are baked in small batches for a wholesome, gourmet taste, and they are lightly sweetened with unrefined coconut sugar which won’t deplete your energy as the day progresses.
There are several flavor choices, including cranberry pecan (featured), blueberry hemp, maple almond butter, banana nut butter, and chocolate peanut butter which are all made with natural, organic and gluten-free ingredients.
Serve with vegan yogurt and chopped fruits or plant-based milk for a delicious beneficial morning treat.
It’s worth noting that Purely Elizabeth Ancient Grain Granola cereals do contain nuts and they are prepared in a facility with soy. Also ingredients and allergens can differ from flavor to flavor, so be sure to check before purchasing!
Other Vegan & Gluten-Free Cereal Options from Purely Elizabeth:
- Maple & Almond Butter Granola
- Pumpkin Cinnamon Granola
- Grain-Free Banana Nut Butter Keto Granola
- Superfood Oats – Apple Cinnamon
One Degree breakfast cereals believe in the connection between healthy plants, soil and healthy people. Their products are USDA organically grown and processed according to a specific set of standards. Ingredients are all GMO-free, organic, vegan, and gluten-free and they come in artisan flavors such as cacao or ancient maize.
Further proof of the company’s commitment to healthy eating is visible on their packaging, where ingredients are listed as primarily organic including – sprouted gluten-free organic oats, cane sugar, brown rice and brown rice syrup, quinoa, cacao powder and more.
There is a code on the packaging that you can scan to learn about the farmers and producers that bring each ingredient to the final cereal. It’s an informative tool for those keen to know more about where their food comes from and make ethical choices as they shop.
There are no common allergens in the cereal; however, it is made in a factory that uses soy, nuts, and dairy in other products.
Other Vegan & Gluten-Free Cereal Options from One Degree:
- Sprouted Brown Rice Cacao Crisps
- Sprouted Apple Cinnamon Instant Oatmeal
- Sprouted Vanilla Chia Granola
IWON Organics was created by a dad of two because he believes we should all feel good about giving the right kinds of food to those we love.
Made with real organic ingredients, the cereals are sweet and delicious, brimming with wholesome foods like organic brown rice flour, navy beans, safflower or sunflower oil, cane sugar and cinnamon. Their organic protein crunchies also have up to three times less sugar than other breakfast cereals.
IWON Organics products are also non-GMO, gluten-free and vegan.
There are no known allergens listed, however, you can check with the manufacturer if you are unsure prior to purchase.
Other Vegan & Gluten-Free Cereal Options from IWON:
Founded in Berkeley, California, Nuthouse! Granola Company offer uniquely inspired breakfast cereals, made by a former professional chef, using spice blends, slow-roasted nuts and organic oats.
This three-pack of NutHouse! best-selling granolas come in three different flavors – Original, Harvest Orange and Blueberry Crunch.
They are delicious to feast on when paired with vegan yogurt and as an additional benefit, the cereals are all gluten-free, dairy-free, soy-free, vegan, non-GMO and kosher!
You can top smoothies with this cereal, enjoy with vegan ice cream or eat it with plant-based milks for a hearty breakfast treat. The company manufacture their cereals using an artisan process and make smaller batches, so that every bag is fresh and ready to eat.
Ideal for a treat, these delicious cereals may contain some allergens, therefore it’s always wise to check prior to eating.
Other Vegan & Gluten-Free Cereal Options from NutHouse!:
What should I look for in a vegan cereal?
Now we know the best vegan breakfast cereal brands, let’s recap on what to look out for when you’re reading the ingredient label.
Navigating the world of nutritional information can be tricky, especially when many ingredients are hard to decipher and come under ‘umbrella’ terms such as ‘natural flavors’ or ‘coloring’.
As vegans, we don’t want to accidentally ingest any animal ingredients or by-products, therefore, paying close attention to the details on the labels is vital.
Please remember though, that a slip-up is okay, even the most experienced of us still get caught out once in a while!
Below, we take a look at the information often found on labels of popular vegan cereal, so that we can make informed decisions on which ones to buy.
Natural flavors are broad, generic terms that can be difficult to identify as vegan without contacting the company directly. There is always a possibility that these ‘natural flavors’ are derived from animals, as eggs, meat and dairy are all allowed under this banner.
Some ethical brands will list where the natural flavors have come from, making it easier to identify whether they’re vegan or not. However, unless the information is accessible, it’s often easier to avoid these brands altogether, unless the product is specifically labelled as vegan.
Honey is usually easy to pick out on an ingredients label. But it’s something you need to be wary of, as it can be lurking in unexpected places, like in BBQ sauce.
The subject of eating honey has divided the vegan community for some time; however, it is still classed as an animal-derived product. If honey is on the list of cereal ingredients, it’s probably wise to continue looking.
Sugar (Especially White)
Don’t panic; we aren’t saying you can’t eat cereals with added sugar! The problem arises with bone char, which is sometimes used to make sugar white (especially in the US).
Unfortunately, there is no way to know how the sugar in your cereal has been processed without contacting the manufacturer directly. In these cases, if you see white sugar listed as an ingredient, you can’t be sure if the cereal is vegan.
Brown sugar isn’t exempt either, as it’s often processed as white sugar, and then colored to make it look brown.
The good news is, high fructose corn syrup (however unhealthy it may be), maple syrup, raw, and organic sugars are all vegan sweeteners, so you can rest assured your cereal meets requirements if you see any of these listed on the box.
As most vegetarians and vegans know, gelatin is derived from animals. It’s a fairly gruesome ingredient made from boiling animal bones, tendons, ligaments, and skin to create a gelatinous substance.
Gelatin is often found in many products ranging from marshmallows to some yogurts and even vitamin gel capsules, and you often don’t even realise it’s there.
It can also be discovered in some frosted breakfast cereals, therefore, it’s best to check if the ingredients label has any mention of gelatin.
However, it is worth mentioning that some brands now use a form of vegan gelatin, which is ok. Look for any gelatin made from agar-agar and carrageenan which are extracted from seaweed, or pectin which derives from fruit peel.
Vitamin D comes from the sun’s rays and it features in many vegan fortified cereal brands too. However, what many people don’t know is that Vitamin D usually derives from lanolin, which comes from sheep’s wool.
It’s on the innocuous end of the vegan ingredient scale, but it’s still one to be aware of if you want to completely eradicate your intake of animal-derived products.
What about the nutritional information?
Transitioning to a vegan lifestyle and adapting to a completely different diet is an achievement in itself, and once we have made the commitment, we want to ensure that our breakfast cereal is packed with the nutritional value that our body deserves.
Looking at the labels on cereal boxes can be helpful, but when we break it down, there are really just three main areas to consider.
Fiber is found in all plant-based foods and is essential to keep your digestive system in seamless working order.
It’s an essential addition to any cereal, whether vegan or non-vegan, and you can usually tell if a cereal has decent nutritional value from the grams of fiber listed on the box.
Five grams of fiber per serving is a good starting point; however, this can be adapted to suit your needs. If you are completely changing your diet, it is always wise to consult a healthcare professional or nutritionist for advice before completely transitioning to a vegan lifestyle.
Proteins are a key part of a healthy diet. Your body uses proteins to create new cells and repair any tissue that may be damaged.
It’s often regarded as something that vegans don’t consume enough of; however, protein is present in many plant-based foods such as lentils, peas, pulses and breakfast cereals.
An individual’s protein needs will differ depending on body type, gender and exercise routine. The good news is that there are plenty of resources available, and speaking with a nutritionist can help you work out exactly how much protein your body needs on a daily basis to keep you fit and healthy.
On many cereal labels you will see the tag ‘added sugar’. If sugar has been added, it has often been refined and is pretty unhealthy compared to the sugar that we find naturally in fruit.
When we look at the ingredients list for added sugar, consider the level of content. If it’s low or there is no added sugar at all, it’s a great option.
It’s worth remembering that there is nothing wrong with indulging in sugary cereal from time to time, but regular consumption may cause health problems later down the line.
Wherever possible, we have tried to include as much additional information about allergens in the cereal descriptions. However, sometimes only the most common allergens are included. There may be additional allergens in a specific cereal which may not be conducive to your personal health, therefore, it’s always wise to double-check with the manufacturer if unsure.
The popular cereals listed above are all suitable for vegans, however, not all of them are super healthy. It’s ok to indulge from time to time, especially when you are transitioning to veganism, as it can help to break you into the lifestyle gently.
We hope you have enjoyed this insight into the realms of delicious, nutritious, vegan breakfast cereals on the market today. This list of vegan cereal brands caters to every taste preference, whether you enjoy nutty, fruity, chewy, or chocolate-flavoured cereals.
As more people begin to see the benefits of a plant-based diet, more breakfast food brands will begin to pop up, giving us even more choice. However, it’s always wise to research, identify the health benefits and determine whether the cereal is truly suitable for vegan consumption, or if it contains any ingredients that may cause an allergic reaction.
Some of the vegan cereals we have featured do contain sugar, however, they are fine to enjoy as a treat. As with anything in life, as long as everything is taken in moderation, we will all continue to live happy, healthy, plant-based lifestyles!