Are Hot Tamales Vegan? We Have The Answer

Are Hot Tamales vegan? No. Although a particular handful of vegans believe Hot Tamales to be vegan, we’ll explain why later. After all, there isn’t a single vegan cookbook.

Hot Tamales candy has been one of the most popular sweets for individuals of all ages since its inception in 1950. Hot Tamales, named after the often pungent (spicy hot) flavour of tamales, was the most popular cinnamon candy in 1999. Hot Tamales can be found on the shelves of any movie theatre.

As a result, whether Hot Tamales are vegan comes up. And that’s what we’ll be discussing today. Continue reading to find out more about Hot Tamales, such as whether or not they are vegan.

What Are Hot Tamales?

Hot Tamales are chewy, spicy-red cinnamon-flavoured candies. The candy comes in several flavours ranging from Hot Tamales 3 Alarm Flavor, Hot Tamales Fierce Cinnamon, Hot Tamales Juniors, Hot Tamales Tropical Heat, and many more!

All of the ingredients are from the United States, and the product is made and packed in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. They’re perfect for any occasion, such as Easter, Christmas, and Halloween. It’s also a terrific snack for everyday events. There is some heat after a mouthful since they are spicy, but there is also obvious sweetness, and the balance is excellent.


  • Sugar
  • Corn Syrup
  • Citric Acid
  • Malic Acid
  • Fumaric Acid
  • Pectin
  • White Mineral Oil
  • Artificial Colors
  • Confectioners’ Glaze
  • Carnauba

Why Hot Tamales Are Considered Vegan

Veganism is classified into several categories, with some abstaining from the most visible animal products and by-products like beef, eggs, and dairy. Other vegans go a step farther and avoid eating any food that leads to animal cruelty, either completely or partially.

Those who fall into the first category should try Hot Tamales, free of the most common non-vegan ingredients found in candy, such as egg albumin, gelatine, milk or other dairy products, and animal-derived dyes.

Hot Tamales used to incorporate gelatine, which is made from the collagen found in animal body parts, but they simply switched and changed their recipe to remove it. Red 4 food colouring is also used in most candies made from beetle carminic acid.

Here are several reasons why hot tamales are vegan:

There is no egg albumin in this product.

Vegans are well aware that any animal-derived product is a no-no. There is a plethora of egg albumin-containing chocolates on the market.

Egg albumin is the water found in the egg white, which makes up 58 percent of the total weight of an egg. Egg albumin is used to make chewy candies. But there’s nothing like that in hot tamales.

There is no gelatin in this product.

Gelatin is a common ingredient in candy creation. Gelatin is a colourless, transparent substance extracted from animal tissue. There is no gelatin in hot tamales at all.

No animal-derived colours in this product.

Red 40 and red 3 are the colours of hot tamales. These dyes are azo dyes made from coal tar. Carmine acid, derived from beetles, is responsible for several of the hues. Red 4 is the name of the colour. Heaps of beetles or lots of fish glue are required to achieve this colour. Vegans can eat hot tamales because they don’t contain any of these animal-derived colours.

Why Do Some Vegans Avoid Eating Hot Tamales?

Even though Hot Tamales do not have any animal components found in confectionery, they are not completely vegan. This is because the manufacturers continue to employ ingredients that are not vegan-friendly.

They contain confectioner’s glaze and shellac, necessitating meticulous exploitation and management of the lac bags throughout production. The confectioner’s glaze necessitates a non-animal-sourced material generated from an insect. However, committed vegans avoid this for emotional reasons. The substance they use is a shellac-filled sac made by bugs called cocoons.

They need between 50000 and 30000 insect sacs to get one kilogram of shellac. Normally, the process would not hurt the bugs but merely take the sac. But who knows whether or not they were damaged. As a result, devout vegans are wary of spicy tamales.

As if it wasn’t bad enough, a slew of bugs is slaughtered when the matter is peeled from the branches. Confectioner’s glaze is not only made with animal ingredients, but it also encourages animal suffering, which vegans abhor.

Some sugar producers are now employing vegan-friendly purification agents in their production. It might be difficult to determine where a huge firm gets its sugar. In other words, we have no way of knowing whether or not the sugar in your Hot Tamales is vegan.

Vegan Alternatives

It’s not that difficult to get vegan-friendly candy. You will find lots of plant-based, vegan options right in the sweets section of your local supermarket. The coolest thing is that they do not contain confectioners’ glaze. The following are some of the greatest vegan alternatives to Hot Tamales:

  1. Brach’s Cinnamon Imperial Candy.
  2. Zachary Cinnamon Bears Candy.


Are hot tamales no longer available?

Hot Tamales Ice, a minty variation, was sold in the late 2000s but was later discontinued. In 2018, it was relaunched with conventional Hot Tamales and branded as Hot Tamales Fire & Ice.

What is the hottest tamale candy on the market?

Hot Tamales 3 Alarm is a mix of three candies in three different flavours. The orange ones are the hottest, followed by the pink ones, which are much hotter, and the dark red ones, which are the hottest.

What is it that makes hot tamales candy so spicy?

The use of cinnamaldehyde gives Hot Tamales Candy its spiciness. Cinnamon barks contain this chemical. Because it affects the skin, your tongue interprets it as ‘hot’ when it comes into contact.


Candy is highly addictive. However, you must know that none of the candies is good for your health. If you consume sugar all the time, you won’t be able to live a healthy lifestyle. So, this Halloween, limit your candy intake and be healthy. Veganism, therefore, will benefit both you and the wildlife.

If you enjoyed this article, please be sure to check out our take on whether or not molasses is vegan!

Brett White
Latest posts by Brett White (see all)