Are Eggs Vegan and Do Vegans Eat Eggs?

Veganism is the term for a lifestyle without any forms of exploitation or cruelty to animals. Most people decide to go vegan because of moral, ethical and personal beliefs. Vegans do not wish to participate in the harming of animals in any way, whether it is through animal food products, meat by-products, or products tested on animals. 

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Whilst veganism is now far more widely accepted and popular, people can find it hard to make the switch to a more ethical, environmentally friendly life without the harming of animals.

Once of the biggest obstacles some vegans face is the debate as to whether a vegan can eat eggs. Some vegans have started calling themselves ‘veggans’ and adopted the vegan diet but with the addition of an egg breakfast here and there. This obviously goes against the inherent beliefs of many vegans, who argue that eating eggs is not a vegan practice.

So Can Vegans Eat Eggs?

This is the big question. Generally speaking, eggs are not vegan because they are farmed from an animal and consumed by humans. However, some people argue that cruelty-free eggs from ethically sourced and cared for hens are acceptable, because the hens produce the eggs naturally. Many vegetarians eat eggs for this reason.

For example, these types of eggs would come from a hen sanctuary, where farmers and volunteers would only collect and sell eggs that they come across. The money collected from the sale of such eggs would go towards the care of the rescue battery hens retiring  in the sanctuary.

Obviously, other vegans may feel that this goes against the basic principle of veganism, and real vegans would not want to participate or eat any foods that come from animals. This is why so many vegans can feel conflicted about eating eggs whilst trying to live a vegan lifestyle. 

Can I eat eggs on a vegan diet?

Some people can find switching to a vegan diet fairly easy. With  a wide variety of vegan alternatives to chocolate, cheese, meats and so much more, becoming a vegan has never been so easy. Because eggs are a product of the animal food industry then technically, eating eggs on a vegan diet makes it no longer a vegan diet. There is an alternative term for eating eggs but sticking to a vegan and vegetarian diet, and it is called ovo-vegetarian.

That being said, your vegan diet is specific to you. Sticking to a plant based life, and reducing or stopping your intake of meats and animal products is still a great lifestyle choice and wonderful for the environment. 

If you find cutting eggs out from your diet is too difficult, then it is not the worst thing in the world, as the egg-laying process is natural for hens and does not harm them. However, this will depend on the way in which the eggs are harvested. As long as the hen is not exploited when the eggs are produced, then you can eat them if you choose to do so.

Why don’t vegans eat eggs?

Vegans typically refrain from eating eggs as their inherent beliefs meant that to be a vegan, you must avoid all types of animal exploitation, including the egg industry. 

As eggs mostly come from farmed chickens, these hens are often kept in terrible conditions, in small cages, and are forced to produce eggs until they begin to age. After this time, many are sent to the slaughter once they stop producing eggs. 

This is obviously an abhorrent way of looking after chickens and hens, with a complete disregard for their lives. In addition, male chicks are often slaughtered within minutes of their birth as the industry has no need for them. 

Because of the practices of the egg industry, vegans feel uncomfortable participating in the sale and consumption of chicken eggs. 

What are the best egg alternatives for vegans?

If you are partaking in veganism, and finding it difficult to reduce your intake of eggs, then there are many alternatives on the market that you can eat instead.

Follow Your Heart Eggs

One of the firm favorites are the Follow Your Heart Eggs. These are completely vegan, plant based egg replacements that can be used in a whole variety of recipes.


If you just cannot live without your morning omelette, scrambled eggs, or breakfast sandwiches, then you can use the JUST Egg replacer made from plants. 

This egg alternative is totally vegan, delicious, free of cholesterol and is much more sustainable. What is even better is this egg replacement tastes and cooks just like eggs, all you have to do is scramble it.

Orgran Vegan Easy Egg

Why not try the Orgran Vegan Easy Egg alternative? This revolutionary product can help you enjoy your favorite egg dishes without exploiting animals or damaging the planet. With this egg replacement, you can make the perfect scrambled egg, quiche, frittata and omelettes!

VEGG Vegan Egg Yolk

With the Vegg Vegan Egg Yolk, you can substitute real eggs for this vegan alternative! It is healthy, delicious and tastes just like real eggs, but is made from all natural ingredients.

The Neat Egg Substitute

If you need an egg replacer for baking cakes and sweet treats, then you can use this neat egg mix instead! Simply combine with water for a great binder for your recipes!

With so many different substitutes to choose from, you do not have to cheat on your vegan principles to eat any eggs. 

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Cassie brings decades of experience to the Kitchen Community. She is a noted chef and avid gardener. Her new book "Healthy Eating Through the Garden" will be released shortly. When not writing or speaking about food and gardens Cassie can be found puttering around farmer's markets and greenhouses looking for the next great idea.
Cassie Marshall
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