Answer: Yes, but with some small technicalities! There are certain types of mustards (such as honey mustard and Dijon) that may have ingredients processed with animal by-products or honey. However, any common brown or yellow mustard is usually just mustard seeds, vinegar, salt, and spices. Even if it contains xanthan gum as a thickener (an ingredient you might not recognize), it is still vegan!
Mustard is a common condiment dating all the way back to 1800 BC. Unlike other condiments, it can be prepared with a wide range of flavor profiles which range from spicy to sweet and everything in between. It can even have a variety of different textures from completely smooth, to gritty, to completely whole grain.
As mentioned earlier, common types of mustards that you might not want to consider vegan are honey mustard and Dijon mustard.
Dijon mustard, although appearing animal product free, is made with white wine. While wine doesn’t technically have animal products in it, often times it is used as part of the filtering process.
Honey mustard obviously contains honey and many people do not consider honey to be vegan. This is, however, a widely debated topic.
Also, if the mustard has added sugar (most don’t) there’s a chance that the sugar was refined with bone char. This is not permitted in organic sugars according to regulations in the US, so if your stuff is organic then you’re fine!
Mustards that use the term “natural flavors” would be impossible to discern if they were vegan or not (read more about natural flavors). If you wanted to be 100% sure, you’ll have to contact the manufacturer of the company directly. However, if you find this too restricting be sure to read our conclusion.
There are gourmet and fancy tons of mustards out there, but our number one choice for simple mustard is going to be Gulden’s. It’s been one of the bestselling brands for a long time, and they’ve always kept their ingredient list super simple: Vinegar, Mustard Seed, Salt, Spices, and Turmeric. Check it out below!
There are tons of other vegan condiments out there besides mustard that many people don't think about. In case you're interested, we've covered the following in other articles:
Remember, it's plants that give our food the flavors that we love so much - not animal products!
Honey is a controversial and highly debated topic in the vegan community. If you’re trying to transition to veganism, we don’t recommend getting caught up in some of the more debated vegan topics, such as honey, or even nitpicking yourself for products that don’t blatantly state they contain animal products. In addition, being fully against honey without understanding the complexities of the debate is never a good way to go about things. You should always be learning, understanding, and then acting.
Focus on giving up all obvious animal products such as meat, dairy, eggs, and fish. After that, you can then explore some of the more nuanced topics and make your own decisions. Once you’ve fully adapted to the lifestyle, consider your side of the debate on honey and do your best to find the more deeply hidden ingredients that may require manufacturer outreach and digging.
Cooking healthy, delicious, plant-based meals has been Joey’s true passion since he went vegan in 2015. He has a masters in Nutrition and Food Science and is committed to making the internet a place of education and knowledge rather than misinformation and clickbait. He currently lives in Delaware with his wife.