Thomas is one of the longest-standing bakeries in the United States. While many know the company for being the first to bring English muffins to Americans, Thomas also makes some of the best-tasting bagels you’ll find on store shelves.
Are Thomas Bagels vegan, though?
Thomas Bagels are, in fact, vegan. Unlike some bagels, which may contain eggs or dairy, Thomas bagels are dairy and egg-free. The only ingredient that some vegans may question is the refined sugar used to sweeten the dough since it’s filtered through bone char.
In this post, I’ll show you all of the ingredients in Thomas Bagels, so you can decide for yourself whether or not these bagels are right for you!
Do Thomas Bagels Have Dairy?
While most bread products tend to be vegan-friendly, plant-based eaters should always be wary of added by-products like dairy and eggs when it comes to bread, bagels, and muffins.
Traditionally, dairy and eggs have always been used in baking and are commonly used to sweeten, soften, and strengthen the dough.
Thankfully, Thomas Bagels are all 100% dairy-free!
You won’t find any hidden milk products like whey, casein, or butter in these bagels. This means that they’re a great choice for both vegans and lactose-intolerant individuals alike.
How Can You Tell If A Bagel Is Vegan?
The best way to tell whether or not a certain brand of bagels is vegan is to read through the ingredients list. I know the fine print can be a bit irritating to read, but it’s always worth checking out if you want to be certain that your bagels are free from any animal additives.
In particular, watch out for dairy and egg products, as these are commonly used in bagels.
Additionally, some bagels may also contain honey as a sweetener (these are typically honey-wheat flavored bagels). Since honey is generally regarded as a non-vegan sweetener, you’ll want to stay away from it.
What Are Thomas Bagels Made Of? Ingredients Analyzed
Now, to help you better understand how to read the ingredients list, here’s a full breakdown of everything used to make Thomas Original Plain Bagels. The same base ingredients are used for all varieties of Thomas Bagels, so it’s good to get acquainted with these additives.
Now, let’s take a closer look and simplify any confusion you may have!
1) Enriched Wheat Flour & Water
Like most bagels, Thomas Bagels start with simple wheat flour and a water dough recipe. Wheat flour is a simple baking ingredient made from grinding dried wheat berries into a fine powder. This flour is then enriched with natural vitamins and minerals to make it more nutritious.
Both wheat flour and water are always vegan, so you never need to question these ingredients!
As I mentioned in the intro, refined sugar is the only ingredient that some of my readers need to worry about. This is because refined sugar isn’t as vegan-friendly as it may seem.
Although white sugar comes from sugarcane, it’s filtered through animal bone char filters to refine it from its original form.
Vegans typically go for products that contain unrefined cane sugar instead.
At the end of the day, though, white sugar is still a plant-based product. So, many dietary vegans choose to look past the not-so-vegan filtration process.
Yeast is an essential part of baking any bread product. A small amount of yeast is added to the dough.
Once water is added, the yeast awakens and begins feeding on sugars in the dough, releasing CO2 gas as a by-product. This causes the dough to rise, giving the texture and airiness of the bagels once they’re baked.
4) Wheat Gluten
Wheat gluten is the pure protein found in wheat. It’s added to the bagel dough to strengthen it and give it a chewier texture. Wheat gluten can also be used to make a popular vegan meat alternative called seitan.
Salt is added to most bread and bagel dough recipes. It adds flavor to the bagels and also helps to strengthen the dough, which improves the texture of the final product.
6) Corn Meal
Corn meal is a thick, minimally processed form of corn flour that’s made from dried and ground corn kernels. When combined with the wheat flour-based dough, the resulting bagels have a softer texture and more complex flavor.
7) Calcium Propionate & Sorbic Acid
Calcium propionate and sorbic acid are both naturally-derived preservatives that are commonly found in store-bought bread and bagels. Both come from natural, organic compounds and are not derived from any animal or meat sources, which means they’re vegan-friendly.
Monoglycerides are naturally-derived fatty acids that help oil and water mixtures bind together. In this case, the monoglycerides help the vegetable oil bind with the water-based dough.
9) Citric Acid
Citric acid is a naturally-occurring acid that’s found in citrus and other fruits. It’s often added to store-bought products as a natural preservative and flavor additive.
10) Guar Gum
Guar gum is a thick, gum-like substance that’s made from guar beans. It’s been used as a binding and thickening agent in food for quite some time and is 100% natural.
11) Vegetable Oil
Thomas Bagels are all made with a bit of natural soybean oil, which helps to soften the dough and improve the texture.
12) Soy Lecithin
Lastly, soy lecithin, a soy-based emulsifier, and preservative are added to extend the shelf life of Thomas Bagels.
Are Thomas Cinnamon Swirl Bagels Vegan?
Yes! Thomas Cinnamon Swirl Bagels are vegan-friendly.
A brief look at the ingredients list reveals that they don’t contain any animal-derived ingredients. Like the Plain Thomas Bagels, though, they do contain refined sugar, which may be an issue for some ethical vegans.
Conclusion – Are Thomas Bagels Vegan-Friendly?
If you’re looking for a healthy, vegan-friendly bagel, then Thomas Bagels is a good choice! Just be aware that all Thomas Bagels are made with a bit of refined white sugar, which could be a deal-breaker depending on how strict your vegan diet is.
If you’re looking for another great-tasting, healthy breakfast food, be sure to check out my list of the best vegan yogurt brands next!