Vegan Guides

Are Nerds Vegan: Which Nerds Are Vegan?

Nerds are a widely favored candy, they are like the old ‘millions’ candies, but better! It’s just one of those sweets and treats we love

Sadly, a majority of Nerds won’t be vegan, but you need to pay attention to the flavors because it is the flavors that dictate if Nerds are vegan or not. 

Are Nerds Vegan: Which Nerds Are Vegan?

A sad truth for many candies is that they won’t be vegan, or will only have a few flavors that are vegan. Why is this? 

Well, stick around and find out! 

Which Nerds Are Vegan?

A vast majority of Nerds won’t be vegan, but some are. You see, most Nerds will have red or pink coloring in them, and in that mix is something which is carmine. And, carmine is NOT vegan friendly. 

However, not all flavors contain this. So, you will find some that are vegan. Let’s take a look at all the favorite flavors and see which are, and which are not. 

Are Green Nerds Vegan?

Sadly, most Nerds will not be vegan. This is thanks to how they are often sold in multiple colors/ flavors, and there will almost always be a red or pink flavor in there somewhere, which will have carmine in it, which is most definitely not vegan.

Are Strawberry Nerds Vegan?

Are Nerds Vegan: Which Nerds Are Vegan?

Strawberry Nerds are one of the ones that contain carmine. Although the more well-known grape Nerds will have 2 coloring agents, which are blue and red ½. This is what makes grape Nerds vegan but strawberry ones are not vegan. 

It’s all to do with the coloring agents and that pesky carmine.

Are Grape Nerds Vegan

The red and pink Nerds are made the color they are with carmine, which is a substance made from crushed insects (gross!). Insects count as animals and thus this makes them not vegan. 

However, the grape nerds do not suffer from this problem, so they are vegan.

Are Blue Nerds Vegetarian?

Blue nerds are unlikely to be found on their own. Most people will find them in the rainbow packs. This means that they are often packaged with a lot of other flavors, most of which will not be vegan. So, for this reason, I will say they are not vegan.

Are Nerds Jelly Beans Vegan?

Nerds Jelly Beans are not vegan thanks to their controversial ingredients list. 

Do Nerds Have Gelatin In Them?

Not all Nerds will contain gelatin, but some do. Remember Nerds don’t just do those little balls, they do other things too. 

Nerds also sell Gummy Worms (which contain gelatin). However, if you see the word ‘Altoids’ in the ingredients list, stay away from it as this contains pork gelatin. Sadly this is another thing that can be found in many Nerds. 

Are Nerds Suitable For Vegans?

Nerds can be vegan, but most of them are not. It really depends on the flavor. The reds and the pinks are colored using carmine. Carmine is made using crushed insects, and as insects count as animals, this is not considered as being vegan. 

Thus, any red or pink Nerds are not vegan, but flavors like grape are. Yet, most packs of Nerds will be mixed, and it is hard to separate these. So, unless you luckily get flavors that do not contain any reds or pinks, then you will end up finding that there are few Nerds available for you. 

What Are Nerds Made Of?

Instead of only telling you the ingredients that are not vegan-friendly, I have uncovered the full list of ingredients in Nerds. 

This includes: 

  • Dextrose.
  • Sugar.
  • Malic Acid.
  • Corn Syrup. 
  • Carnauba Wax (Palm Wax).
  • Artificial Flavors.
  • Carmine Color.
  • Dyes: Blue 1, Blue 1 Lake, Blue 2, Blue 2 Lake, Red 40, Red 40 Lake, Yellow 5, Yellow 5 Lake, Yellow 6, Yellow 6 Lake. 

Red 40 is controversial enough, but so are artificial flavors, as we do not know exactly what is in these artificial flavors. 

Are Nerds Healthy?

These itsy bitsy fruity flavored balls of sugar might seem pretty harmless, however, a single tablespoon of nerds actually contains a whopping 60 calories and an insane 14 grams of sugar, which makes up most of those 60 calories.
This means that nerds are NOT healthy at all. As we all know, sugar can be very bad for your teeth too.

They are absolutely jam-packed with sugar, and therefore an agreeable serving size would be tiny and it is a bit too easy to overeat them.


Want to know more? Boy ‘o’ boy have I got plenty more for you! 

Are Nerds Vegetarian?

Nerds can be vegan, but not all, and sadly, due to the inclusion of insects, the same thing stands for how vegetarian they are. They do not contain dairy, but their risk ingredients are focused on the Carmine in them, which comes from dead insects.

Are Nerds Just Sugar?

Nerds are mostly just sugar in terms of nutrition. While they taste nice, and some of the more sour flavors might fool you into thinking they are not just sugar, they pretty much are. 

Their 3 main ingredients include sugar, malic acid, and dextrose. Which makes them very sugar heavy.

Are Nerds Halal?

Nerds are not always halal, also for the same reason that they are not always vegan. It is once more the inclusion of the carmine from crushed dead insects. 

Are Nerds Gluten Free?

Nerds contain absolutely no gluten ingredients at all. They are also made in a facility that does contain any gluten though, so they are not actually considered gluten-free as there is a risk of cross-contamination. 

Are Nerds Vegan In The UK?

Are Nerds Vegan: Which Nerds Are Vegan?

Even in the UK, Nerds are not suitable for vegans due to the red and pink dyes. Sadly this is something that stands for all Nerds in every country that sells them. 

Nerds are not considered vegan suitable in the US or in the UK!


Not all nerds are vegan. So be very careful when you pick your nerd’s flavor. You should be safe with the grape nerds, as they are vegan, but other flavors are not vegan or make sure you read the ingredients list.
Reading the ingredients before you purchase anything is something I advise all vegans to do!

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