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Is Aunt Jemima complete pancake mix vegan?

Whether Aunt Jemima complete pancake mix is vegan or not is a common question for those following a plant-based diet. With more people adopting vegetarian and vegan lifestyles, there is an increased demand for packaged foods that fit within dietary restrictions. Understanding the ingredients in popular foods like Aunt Jemima pancake mix can help consumers make informed choices.

The Short Answer

No, Aunt Jemima complete pancake mix is not vegan. While the mix contains mostly vegan ingredients like enriched bleached wheat flour, sugar, leavening agents, and salt, it also contains milk solids and potential egg ingredients. This makes Aunt Jemima pancake mix unsuitable for a vegan diet.

Examining the Ingredients in Aunt Jemima Complete Pancake Mix

To determine if a food product is vegan, it is important to carefully read the ingredient list. Here are the main ingredients in Aunt Jemima complete pancake mix:

  • Enriched bleached wheat flour
  • Sugar
  • Leavening (sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium bicarbonate)
  • Cornstarch
  • Salt
  • Monocalcium phosphate
  • Baking soda
  • Milk solids
  • Potential egg ingredients
  • Soy lecithin
  • Natural and artificial flavors

While most of these ingredients are vegan, the milk solids and potential egg ingredients would make this pancake mix non-vegan. Milk solids are derived from milk, which comes from cows. Eggs also come from animals, so any egg-related ingredients would be non-vegan.

Key Animal-Derived Ingredients

Let’s take a closer look at the two main non-vegan ingredients:

Milk Solids

Milk solids come from milk, which comes from cows. All dairy products including milk solids are non-vegan.

Potential Egg Ingredients

The “potential egg ingredients” is unclear, but possibilities could include:

  • Egg whites
  • Powdered eggs
  • Egg yolks

Since eggs come directly from chickens, any form of eggs would be non-vegan.

Why Are Milk and Eggs Added to Pancake Mix?

Milk and eggs are commonly added to pancake mix for the following reasons:

  • Milk solids add flavor and browning. The lactose in milk solids helps pancakes achieve a golden brown color.
  • Eggs help pancakes rise and become fluffier. Eggs act as a leavening agent.
  • Milk and eggs also add moisture, richness, and binding to the batter.

While milk solids and eggs improve the taste, texture, and appearance of pancakes, they prevent the mix from being vegan-friendly. Vegan pancake mixes rely on plant-based ingredients to replicate the properties of milk and eggs.

Popular Brands of Vegan Pancake Mix

While Aunt Jemima is not vegan, there are many widely available vegan pancake mix options, including:

Brand Key Features
Krusteaz Protein-enriched, non-GMO
Birch Benders Organic, grain-free, high-protein
Nature’s Path Organic, gluten-free, nutritious
Bob’s Red Mill Whole grain, stone ground flour
Hungry Jack Affordable, widely available

These vegan pancake mixes rely on ingredients like soy milk, plant-based protein powders, bananas, flax eggs, and more to recreate the classic pancake experience without milk or eggs.

Tips for Finding Vegan Pancake Mix

When searching for vegan pancake mix, look for these clues on the packaging:

  • Certified vegan logo
  • “Dairy-free” or “non-dairy”
  • “Egg-free”
  • Plant-based alternatives like “flax egg,” “banana,” “soy milk,” etc.

You can find vegan pancake mixes in the baking aisle at most major grocery stores. Natural food stores like Whole Foods and Sprouts are also great places to search.

How to Make Vegan Pancake Mix at Home

If you want complete control over the ingredients, you can make your own vegan pancake mix at home. Here is a simple recipe:


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp sugar or sweetener
  • 1 mashed banana
  • 2 tbsp oil or melted vegan butter
  • 1 1/4 cups non-dairy milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


  1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar.
  2. In a smaller bowl, mix together the banana, oil/butter, non-dairy milk, and vanilla.
  3. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix just until combined (avoid over-mixing).
  4. Use the pancake mix right away or store in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
  5. When ready to use, scoop 1/4 cup of mix per pancake and cook as usual.

The banana and non-dairy milk help replace the moisture, fat, and binding from eggs and milk in traditional pancake mix. Flax eggs, applesauce, or silken tofu can also substitute for eggs in vegan pancake mix recipes.

Vegan Add-In and Topping Ideas for Pancakes

Vegan pancakes aren’t limited to just the basics. You can make them more exciting with fun add-ins and toppings:

Mix-In Ideas Before Cooking

  • Berries like blueberries or raspberries
  • Chopped nuts or seeds
  • Coconut flakes
  • Nut butter
  • Vanilla extract
  • Cinnamon
  • Lemon zest

Topping Ideas After Cooking

  • Fresh fruit like bananas, strawberries, etc.
  • Maple syrup or agave
  • Peanut butter or other nut/seed butters
  • Crushed nuts
  • Coconut whipped cream
  • Dairy-free chocolate chips

Let your imagination run wild with combinations of fruits, nuts, seeds, spices, sweeteners, and anything else that sounds good!

Are There Any Health Concerns with Vegan Pancake Mix?

Like pancake mix made with dairy and eggs, vegan pancake mix is still a processed food high in refined carbohydrates. Some potential health concerns include:

  • Added sugars from ingredients like cane sugar
  • Refined grains instead of whole grains
  • Lack of protein compared to pancakes made with eggs or dairy
  • Potentially less satisfying than homemade flapjack recipes

However, there are ways to maximize nutrition when buying pre-packaged vegan pancake mix or making it at home:

  • Compare brands and choose one lower in sugar
  • Opt for whole grain or protein-enriched options
  • Add nuts, seeds, or fruit to boost nutrition
  • Use mostly whole food ingredients when making your own
  • Enjoy pancakes in moderation as part of an overall healthy diet

Aunt Jemima Brand History

While Aunt Jemima pancake mix isn’t vegan, it’s important to also consider the brand’s problematic history based on racist stereotypes. The Aunt Jemima brand was founded in 1889 and originally portrayed a minstrel show-style mammy character on its packaging. The company’s website acknowledged:

“While work has been done over the years to update the brand in a manner intended to be appropriate and respectful, we realize those changes are not enough.”

In 2020, Quaker Oats announced it would retire the Aunt Jemima name and likeness from its brand and packaging due to the racial stereotypes. The product was rebranded as the Pearl Milling Company.

Rebranding Efforts

The Pearl Milling Company has said its rebranding efforts are designed to:

  • Honor the brand’s history and origins
  • Promote inclusion, equity and diversity
  • Provide transparency about the brand’s journey

The new packaging features an updated logo with the image of a 19th century watermill to represent the brand’s original milling source. While the Aunt Jemima name is now retired, the complete pancake mix recipe remains unchanged.

Finding an Ethical Vegan Pancake Mix

When searching for a vegan and ethical pancake mix option, here are some factors to consider:

  • Free of animal products including eggs and dairy
  • Not tested on animals
  • Environmentally sustainable manufacturing
  • Fair labor practices
  • Inclusive marketing
  • Minimally processed
  • Free of artificial ingredients
  • Ethical company standards and values

Looking into vegan-friendly brands and parent companies can help find pancake mixes that align not only with your dietary needs but also your ethical principles.


Aunt Jemima complete pancake mix contains milk solids and potential egg ingredients, making it unsuitable for a vegan diet. But there are plenty of store-bought or homemade vegan mixes available using plant-based alternative ingredients. With some adjustments to ingredients and toppings, vegan pancakes can be just as delicious as traditional versions.

However, Aunt Jemima’s branding history raises concerns about racial stereotyping, prompting the name change to Pearl Milling Company. When searching for an ethical vegan pancake mix, it is important to look at both the ingredients and the values and practices of the parent company.