Unfortunately for a lot of vegans, increasing your calorie intake can be a hassle.
There simply aren’t that many purely vegan foods that have a high amount of calories and when you find them, you tend to eat them all the time.
Nuts, rice, bread, even oats are all great foods, but sometimes we want something that is rich and a little saucy as well.
For most people, they would include pasta in their diet, thus expanding the ease of culinary cooking and giving themselves an assortment of dishes that they can have on the go easily.
However, the problem is that fresh pasta is not normally vegan, as it contains egg. If fresh pasta is not vegan, does that mean all pasta is not vegan?
And if it is, what are the vegan pasta brands? In this article, we shall explore this topic and give you the rundown of pasta and what vegan brands there are out there.
Pasta: Is It Vegan?
As we mentioned earlier, there is some debate over whether or not pasta is vegan. This is because the way pasta is made – for both fresh and dried pasta – has changed significantly over the years.
Originally, old school traditional pasta was made with simply flour and water, because that’s all the common people of Italy had to cook with.
In the modern day, though, other ingredients such as egg or milk have been added to pasta.
As such, we will look at both kinds: fresh and dried (or boxed pasta). If you buy your fresh pasta at the store, then the probability is that it is not vegan at all.
Normally, for fresh store bought and pre-made pasta, egg or milk have been added to it to keep the pasta from drying out or for making its shelf life in its current state slightly longer.
This is because fresh pasta made from flour and water needs to be cooked immediately, otherwise the mixture cannot maintain its shape or consistency and will begin to fall apart.
If you are looking for fresh pasta on a vegan diet, it is best to make your own, rather than buying it.
Dried pasta is a completely different story. Almost all dried pasta on the market today is vegan.
They do not contain dairy or animal products, mainly because the pasta is going to be sitting in a cupboard for potentially months at a time.
Any product made from dairy or animal fats would last maybe a week in those conditions.
Now, with that said, it is still important to check whether your product is actually vegan before buying.
There is nothing worse than planning a meal and finding out you cannot eat it, due to what it contains.
With this in mind, we have decided to compile a list of the best vegan pasta brands currently available down below to make it easier on your next shopping trip.
Vegan Pasta Brands
If you are worried you cannot find these brands, then don’t. We have compiled this list of the most popular brands that make vegan pasta available, so you can find them in any store, from your local to a huge Walmart.
We will start off with an easy one: De Cecco. Everyone has heard of De Cecco or at least has seen the box, they are one of the most iconic pasta brands on the market today.
They are a good quality brand of dried pasta that is reasonably priced and is available almost anywhere.
The company was founded in 1886 by the De Cecco brothers in central Italy, and they have risen to become the third-largest pasta brand as well, without changing the recipe.
Which is a surprise because every one of their products is vegan. Yep, that’s right, every single pasta product produced by De Cecco is a vegan pasta product, from their bucatini down to their gnocchi.
A veritable win for pasta loving vegans everywhere.
De Cecco may hold the third place spot, but the real heavyweights of the pasta producing world are Barilla. They are the largest pasta producing company in the world.
It began as a bakery shop in 1877 in Parma, Italy and has grown continuously since then, with it eventually becoming a true pasta factory in 1910.
The Barilla family has maintained ownership of the company that entire time, and they have cornered the market with their business acumen, so to speak.
Everyone can afford their pasta, and they make a variety of different shapes and sizes of it.
However, not all of their products are vegan and unlike De Cecco, they did use animal products in their pasta for a long time.
The current products that are vegan are:
- Barilla Ready Pasta
- Barilla Whole Grain Pasta
- Barilla Legume Pasta
- Barilla Classic Blue Box
- Barilla Collezione Pasta
- Barilla Gluten Free Pasta
- Barilla Organic Pasta
- Barilla Veggie Pasta
- Barilla Protein+
Previously, a few of these pastas were made with egg whites, like Protein+, but with the rise of considerations made by people of what is in their food, Barilla have followed the new line of thought along with the public.
As such, more vegan friendly choices are now offered to people and every pasta above is vegan.
The only pastas that they make that are not vegan are:
- Barilla Collezione Tortellini
- Barilla Oven-Ready Lasagna Sheets
This isn’t hugely surprising, as these two kinds of recipes – tortellini and lasagna – use animal products traditionally, something that is hard to dislodge in most people’s minds.
Now, we move on to the pasta products that are nowhere near as ubiquitous or common as the two brands above.
Banza is a company founded in the US in 2014, so very much a newcomer to the pasta making game.
However, their ideology is that pasta – and other foods – needs to not only be delicious, but needs to be made using more nutritious products.
This fits perfectly with the vegan lifestyle and Banza has taken up making vegan products very well with all of their pasta products being vegan.
Instead of any of the traditional ingredients, Banza makes their pasta from garbanzo beans (or chickpeas), pea starch, tapioca, and xanthan gum.
Every one of their products is incredibly healthy and – in relation to the pasta – there is not an animal product in sight.
They have gone even further and made a plant based mac and cheese as well, which is everything that was missing from a vegan cooking range.
Since it is a pre-made product, it is probably not going to be as good as a homemade version, but just having a premade option for a vegan meal is great, especially since sometimes you come home from a long day and simply don’t want to cook.
Moving back to Italy for another traditional Italian pasta company, Colavita is not as old as De Cecco or Barilla, being founded in 1912, but that makes their product no less good.
They have only moved once in their entire history and that was because of increased output and demand for more pasta in 1979, with the move only being to a slightly larger town in the same region of Campobasso.
Since the beginning their entire product range has been entirely vegan with every type of pasta produced by the company being made out of 100% durum wheat that has some organic compounds thrown in (niacin, thiamine mononitrate, iron lactate, riboflavin, and folic acid).
They are a good brand to give a try as well, as they offer a huge range of pastas: traditional, whole wheat, gluten-free, organic, and pasta nests, with none of them using animal products.
Another American pasta making brand and the youngest one on this list, The Only Bean was founded in 2017 in Michigan with the intent being all of their food products are only going to be made out of beans and nothing else.
The plan was to make innovative, healthy, and delicious plant-based food products that were also sustainable.
Considering how far they have come in such a short space of time, we would say they have succeeded in their endeavor.
Every one of their pastas is organic, gluten-free, low-carb, keto-friendly, non-GMO, grain-free, and – most importantly for this list – a certified vegan food.
Each type of pasta uses a single bean as its primary ingredient, so you can really pick and choose what you would like.
Currently, there are three kinds of bean available: Soy, Black Bean, and Edamame, with multiple different pastas, all of which – as we said previously – are vegan.
Moving from the youngest company on the list to the oldest one, Rummo has been in the business of making pasta since 1846 in Benevento, Italy, making them the certified pasta masters in this article.
They do everything traditionally, with their pasta being made from high quality durum wheat and cutting their pasta with a bronze die in order to create rough edges for the sauce to grip to when you eat.
Every single one of Rummo’s pastas are vegan, with the only things added to the 100% Durum wheat pasta being organic compounds (iron, thiamine, riboflavin, potassium, niacin, and folate), in much the same way as Colavita do.
Recently, they have also begun offering gluten-free and legume based pastas as well, appealing to more than one type of customer with dietary needs.
The 365 Range By Whole Foods
There are also vegan pastas offered by Whole Foods.
We put this as the last option, because – unlike most of the others – this range is limited to Whole Foods stores, which – unless you live in a large town – is probably not going to be an option for you, especially if you live in the middle of nowhere.
While they do offer a range of pastas that are vegan, in much the same way as Barilla, they are not all vegan.
Here are the vegan options for the 365 pasta range at Whole Foods:
- Pasta Linguine
- Whole Wheat Pasta
- Lasagna sheets and No-Boil lasagna sheets
- Angel Hair
- Tricolor pasta
- Pasta elbows
- Gluten-free Penne Rigate
- Gluten-free farm shapes
On the other hand, the 365 range also has a few pastas – or close cousins of pasta – which are not vegan at all.
- Wide egg noodles
- Mushroom ravioli
- Eggplant ravioli
- Butternut squash ravioli
These four pastas or close cousins of pastas are not vegan at all, as they all use cheese, egg, and whey powder, which all come from animals.
Lastly, we have Seggiano. Seggiano was founded by two friends in 1985, who had a common passion for Italian cuisine, organic food, and sustainable agriculture.
Since then their business has grown, and now it is quite common to see their products in many stores.
Their products are all vegan and organic, however the reason they are further down the list than others is that they can be a bit pricey, due to the nature of how the food is grown and made.
As you can see, there are plenty of vegan pasta brands not only for you to find, but to explore and to buy.
Many of them use traditional ingredients and have been around for hundreds of years, while others use innovative techniques and newer ingredients.
Either way, there should be no shortages of pasta dishes accompanying your vegan diet.