What Vegans Should Know Before Eating Twix

Vegans and vegetarians are often free to enjoy foods that list dark chocolate as a primary ingredient. Hershey's Signature Oat Made Dark Chocolate, for example, landed on Peta's list of the best vegan chocolate bars. But when the ingredients list specifies milk chocolate, like in a Twix, it's a safe bet that some sort of dairy — most likely milk — is involved.

The caramel and shortbread-filled Twix bar is sheathed in milk chocolate, which is prepared using skim milk, per the ingredients list. Twix also lists milkfat as its own separate ingredient. But milk is not the only ingredient that vegans should be wary of in Twix.

In 2021, Twix landed at number six on the list of most popular candy bars ranked worst to best. The chocolate-coated, nostalgia-filled favorite may be indiscriminately delicious, but some can't enjoy the tasty treat because, alas, it's not vegan. And it hasn't been for a while.

One ingredient vegetarians need to watch out for in Twix

In 2007, the BBC reported that the Twix parent company, Masterfoods, a division of Mars Inc., added an animal product called rennet to its UK recipe. Milky Way, Snickers, Maltesers, and Mars Bars also began including the animal-based ingredient, which is made from the stomach lining of young cows (per The Spruce Eats). The ingredient is also a common component in cheesemaking. 

Following backlash from vegetarians and vegans, Mars decided to pull rennet from the recipes of several candies (via The Guardian). However,  candy bars produced in the UK that have a "best before" date anytime after October 1, 2007, probably contain rennet. Today, according to UK grocery store Sainsbury's, the product is vegetarian once again and includes whey, but no rennet. The U.S. version is also suitable for vegetarians, per the nutrition facts.

Whether at home or when traveling, vegans, and anyone with dietary restrictions, should be conscious of the different ingredients in their favorite snacks.