Known for their crunch and sweetness, churros are a deep-fried delight that everyone should enjoy at least once in their lives. Originally from Spain and Portugal, it is still unclear how this popular dessert came to be.
Some people claim that its recipe came to life thanks to the new cuisine discovered by Portuguese sailors in China, while others believe that it is a modernized recipe of an old Greek or Roman dish. What we do know for sure is that churros have been around for centuries and are delicious! But are churros vegan?
In this article, we’ll discuss whether this snack contains animal products, give you tips on how to make your own vegan recipe, and explore its commercial availability.
Veganism and Churros
Whether traditional churros are vegetarian or not is a hot debate. Whatever the answer, finding vegan churros can be challenging because many restaurants and brands include ingredients like butter, eggs, and milk in their products.
Despite the disadvantages, choosing vegan-friendly options has enormous benefits for both animal rights and the environment. Not coincidentally, according to an article in the Guardian, limiting animal products is the single best way to reduce our impact on the planet. Okay, so let’s dive into it. Do churros contain dairy or other animal products? And if yes, how can we avoid them?
Churros and animal derived ingredients
It is not clear whether traditional churros are vegetarian or not. Some people claim that the original recipe only included three simple ingredients, flour, water and salt, while others claim that these sweets are traditionally made from choux pastry, a Dough containing butter and eggs. However the churro dough is made, it is piped through a machine called a churrera, which gives it its distinctive shape, and then deep fried.
On top of that, are the churros Sometimes filled with a sauce or paste made from milk. That’s why it’s so important to always ask your street vendor or waiter if their churros contain animal-derived products or if they’re suitable for a plant-based diet.
Make your own vegan churros
Another great option is to make your own vegan churros! Choose recipes you find online and replace all animal products with vegan options. Here are some examples. Milk can easily be replaced with plant-based alternatives, such as soy milk, cashew milk, oat milk, or another version of your choice. Eggs can be a bit more complicated but are still easy to replace. Aquafaba and ground hemp seeds are undoubtedly the best options. When it comes to butter, just check your nearest store for a vegan option.
If this seems too complicated for you, you can choose a vegetarian recipe to avoid confusion. Here is ours.
- in a bowl, Mix ¼ cup vegetable oil of your choice, one cup sugar and two cups water.
- Transfer to a pan and Bring to a boil. Now it’s time to remove the pan from the heat and add two cups of all-purpose flour.
- Mix everything until you get a thick dough. Fill a piping bag with your mixture and add a star tip to it to give your churros their traditional shape.
- Now you just need Deep fry them and when golden brown, sprinkle some cinnamon and sugar on top.
This is our recipe but you can find plenty of vegan options online, like this version from Broke Bank Vegan, or this option published by All Plants. A quick search will give you plenty of results!
Vegan churros on the market
But are churros easy to find in the market? Well, finding vegan desserts is getting easier and easier every day. Most churros from Spanish and Portuguese street vendors tend to be vegetarian, but always be sure to double-check with the person selling them who has added extra ingredients that aren’t suitable for a vegetarian dish. When it comes to supermarkets, unfortunately most churros contain animal derived products. But now there are a few brands selling vegan options such as Beyond Churros and M&S Plant Kitchen, just to mention a few.
Nutritional value of vegan churros
Now you’re wondering if vegan churros are healthy. Well, this dessert is deep fried and as such it can’t really be healthy. However, if we compare brands like M&S Plant Kitchen to other churros, we can see how the vegetarian options are slightly lower in calories on average. 398 calories per 100 grams compared to 425 calories of traditional churros. On the negative side, the lack of animal products such as milk and eggs lowers their protein percentage. M&S Plant Kitchen churros actually exist. 7.3 grams of protein per 100 grams of versions containing animal products.
What are your options?
So, if you want to enjoy vegetarian churros, there are a few things you can do.
Travel to Portugal or Spain and pick a street vendor, always remembering to ask in advance to be one hundred percent sure their products are vegan.
Make your own churros at home with our vegan recipes, or pick up your favorite from the web or any cookbook you have at home. In this case, be sure to replace aquafaba with eggs and milk with one of the many plant-based alternatives on the market.
You can make your delicious chocolate dipping by melting your favorite vegan dark chocolate with a good amount of coconut milk.
Avoid chains like Costco, Disney, and El Pollo Loco, which always use animal-derived ingredients in their products, and, if store-bought, always look for the vegan label.
So, are churros vegan? They can be, but not always. While some claim that the original churro dough is made from flour, water and salt, other traditional recipes include ingredients such as milk, eggs and butter. so, Always ask street vendors if their products are suitable for your diet or just make your own! Remember, vegan churros are just as delicious as non-plant-based ones but unlike them, they help reduce animal exploitation while benefiting the environment!
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Costco churros vegan?
No, Costco Churros contain eggs and milk.
Are Disney Churros Vegan?
No, Disney Churros contain eggs and milk.
Are El Pollo Loco Churros Vegan?
Unfortunately, El Pollo Loco Churros are not vegan although it is not clear what animal products they include.
Jack in the Box Churros Vegan?
No, Jack in the Box Churros contain eggs and milk.
Are Sam’s Club churros vegan?
No, Sam’s Club Churros contain milk and eggs.
no Sonic Churros are dairy free but contain eggs.