Are Reese’s Vegan? 2023 Update

Reese's peanut butter cups

Although Reese’s is best known for their Peanut Butter Cups, America has consumed all the other Reese’s products with just as much enthusiasm. The Peanut Butter Cups are absolutely delicious, and so are Reese’s Peanut Pieces, Crispy Crunchies, and Puffs.

But are Reese’s vegan?

The truth is: some Reese’s products are vegan, while others are not.

In this updated 2023 article, we will delve into each of Reese’s delicious products and carefully examine their ingredients to determine which ones are vegan-friendly and which ones are not. Additionally, we’ll present you with delicious vegan alternatives that will surely satisfy your sweet tooth.

Furthermore, we were filled with joy when we came across some thrilling news in 2023 about the latest products from Reese’s.

Are Reese’s Vegan?

Unfortunately, most of Reese’s products are NOT vegan due to the presence of dairy-based ingredients. Reese’s typically include milk chocolate, milk fat, and nonfat milk, which make them unsuitable for those following a vegan lifestyle.

Reeses's peanut butter cups


Are Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups vegan?

The original Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are NOT vegan or dairy-free due to the presence of milk chocolate, milk fat, and nonfat milk in their ingredients. Moreover, they also include controversial components such as processed sugar and palm oil, which may raise concerns for strict vegans.

But, we have exciting news for our fellow vegans!

In March 2023, Hershey’s launched a dairy-free, oat-based version called Reese’s Plant-Based. These delicious vegan peanut butter cups are made with oat milk instead of cow milk, providing a delightful treat for all plant-based enthusiasts. Hershey’s is also expanding its plant-based offerings with an Almond & Sea Salt flavor chocolate bar, adding more delectable options for those following a vegan lifestyle.

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Are Reese’s Peanut Pieces vegan?

Sadly, Reese’s Peanut Pieces are not vegan. They contain non-vegan ingredients like whey, a milk product, and resinous glaze, also known as confectioner’s glaze.

They also contain some controversial ingredients: processed sugar, artificial colors (blue 1 lake, yellow 5 lake, yellow 6 lake, red 40 lake), and palm oil.

Are Reese’s Puffs vegan?

No, Reese’s Puffs are not considered vegan. The presence of Reese’s Peanut Butter, which contains ingredients like peanuts, sugar, monoglycerides, and peanut oil, indicates that it contains animal-derived components. Additionally, it includes Vitamin E (mixed tocopherols) as a preservative, which can be derived from either plant or animal sources.

As Reese’s Puffs lack direct animal-derived ingredients (such as dairy or eggs), some non-strict vegans may occasionally choose to include it in their diet.

Are Reese’s Crispy Crunchy vegan?

Reese’s Crispy Crunchy is clearly not vegan. The non-vegan ingredients include milk, whey, milk fat, and nonfat milk. Also, processed sugar and palm oil are questionable components in Reese’s Puffs cereal that strict vegans would rather avoid.

Are Reese’s Sticks vegan?

Reese’s Sticks are not vegan because they contain dairy products: whey, milk, and milk fat. Strict vegans may not like the presence of palm oil and processed sugar.

Is Reese’s NutRageous vegan?

Reese’s NutRageous are not vegan because of the presence of whey, whey protein concentrate, sodium caseinate, and nonfat milk. Mono and diglycerides and processed sugar are the other doubtful ingredients in this product.

Are Reese’s Dark Peanut Butter Cups vegan?

Unsurprisingly, Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are also not vegan. The chocolate in these butter cups contains milk fat. The other problematic ingredient is processed sugar.

Is Reese’s Peanut Butter Sauce vegan?

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Yes, Reese’s Peanut Butter Sauce is completely vegan. There are no dairy or animal-derived ingredients in this delicious Peanut Butter Sauce. The only environmentally unsustainable ingredient in this product is palm oil that strict vegans might want to avoid.

See also: Is Butter Vegan?

Is Reese’s Peanut Butter Topping vegan?

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Yes, Reese’s Peanut Butter Topping is also vegan. No dairy or animals derived products are a constituent of this sauce. Processed sugar might be a problematic ingredient for strict vegans.

Vegan Alternatives to Reese’s peanut butter cups

1. Unreal Nut Butter Cups


Unreal Nut Butter Cups have become a go-to treat for us as vegans. One afternoon, while hanging out with friends, we shared a pack of these delectable butter cups. As we took the first bite, the creamy sunflower butter filling combined with the rich dark chocolate coating left us utterly delighted. Certified vegan, gluten-free, and non-GMO, these butter cups meet all our dietary preferences while ensuring a guilt-free indulgence.

What pleasantly surprised us was that despite being lower in sugar than mainstream alternatives, Unreal’s dark chocolate selection didn’t compromise on taste at all. It proved that reducing sugar didn’t have to mean sacrificing flavor.

There are three fantastic varieties of Unreal Butter Cups. These include:

  • Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
  • Dark Chocolate Crispy Peanut Butter Cups
  • Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cups

2. Free2b Sun Cups

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We absolutely adore Free2b Sun Cups and can’t get enough of their three delightful varieties. One memorable experience was when we took these delicious treats on a road trip with friends. With every bite, we marveled at the rich flavors and smooth texture, all while feeling at ease knowing they are perfectly vegan and free from major allergens. Sun Cups quickly became our go-to treat for the journey and we wholeheartedly recommend them!

They come in three flavorsome varieties:

  • Dark Chocolate Sun Cups
  • Dark Chocolate Mint Cups
  • Rice Chocolate Sun Cups 

3. Justin’s Butter Cups

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As fellow chocolate enthusiasts and passionate vegans, we can’t help but rave about Justin’s vegan butter cups, a perfect alternative to Reese’s peanut butter cups. From the moment we tasted them, we were hooked on the rich and creamy flavor.

The best part is, Justin’s ensures that there are no animal-based ingredients in their product, giving us the peace of mind to indulge without any guilt. While the small note about possible traces of milk may be a concern for some, we’ve personally enjoyed these delectable treats without any issues.

Justin’s Butter Cups come in the following varieties:

  • Justin’s Organic Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
  • Justin’s Organic Dark Chocolate Cashew Butter Cups
  • Justin’s Organic Dark Chocolate Almond Butter Cups

4. No Whey! Seed Butter Cups

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We were thrilled to discover “No Whey! Seed Butter Cups” and decided to give them a try during a weekend movie night. The creamy texture and rich flavor were simply divine, and we couldn’t believe they were completely dairy-free.

With no soy, sesame, gluten, or peanuts in sight, their Pea Not Cups may not be technically peanut butter cups, but they are a delightful sunflower butter delight suitable for everyone to enjoy!

5.Go Max Go Butter Cups

go max peanut butter cups

Last but not least, Go Max Go’s vegan butter cups have been an absolute delight from the first bite! The moment we tasted them, we were blown away by the creamy texture and the rich, chocolatey taste. It felt like indulging in a classic milk chocolate butter cup, but without any of the guilt or worry about animal-based ingredients. These butter cups have become our go-to treat when we crave something sweet and satisfying.

Their 2 flavors are:

  • Go Max Go Traditional Peanut Butter Cups
  • Go Max Go White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Go Max Go Butter Cups can be purchased at Vegan Essentials.

Controversial ingredients in all Reese’s Products

1. Sugar

More than half of the sugar factories in America use bone char to filter and whiten cane sugar, which raises ethical concerns for vegans. While it’s possible that Reese’s products may use sugar processed differently, the uncertainty prompts strict vegans to avoid such items. Sugar can also be derived from coconut and beetroot, and some factories now prefer using granular activated carbon for whitening.

On a personal note, we suggest focusing on avoiding meat, dairy, and eggs, as this brings about significant change, rather than getting caught up in the details of factory-made food.

See also: Is Sugar Vegan?

2. Palm oil

When considering Reese’s products, it’s important to be aware of the environmental impact of palm oil used in their production. While palm oil comes from plants, its sourcing involves clearing large forest lands for palm plantations, leading to deforestation and the depletion of soil nutrients, particularly in countries like Indonesia. This deforestation has resulted in habitat loss for endangered flora and wildlife, pushing many animals closer to extinction.

Moreover, palm plantations contribute to global warming by releasing peat into the soil, eventually emitting methane, a potent greenhouse gas.

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While most of the products offered by Reese’s are NOT suitable for vegans, the year 2023 brought an exciting surprise with the introduction of Reese’s Plant-Based peanut butter cups by Hershey’s. This delightful dairy-free version is made with oat milk, making it a great option for plant-based enthusiasts.

Additionally, there are some other vegan-friendly options in Reese’s lineup. The Peanut Butter Sauce and the Peanut Butter Topping do not contain animal or dairy-based products, making them suitable for vegans. However, it’s essential to note that these items may contain processed sugar and palm oil, which could be a concern for stricter vegans.

We sincerely hope this article has been helpful for you in making informed choices about which Reese’s products to purchase as a vegan. As fellow vegans ourselves, we understand the importance of being conscious consumers and selecting products that align with our values. By knowing which treats are vegan-friendly, we can indulge in delicious sweets without compromising on our beliefs.

Joe became a vegan after watching Cowspiracy. He always knew something was off with the way we consume animal products, but watching the documentary made him realized how bad it actually is. Joe is now making sure that every product he buys is 100% vegan!