Are Frosted Cheerios Vegan? (No – Find Out Why!)

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Frosted Cheerios is a deliciously sweet cereal that’s loved by kids and contains whole-grain oats that are puffed and baked. At first glance, the ingredients in Frosted Cheerios appear to be vegan and healthy. Oats are a plant – right? And sugar is sugar – right? So what’s the problem? Are Frosted Cheerios vegan or not? Let’s take a closer look at this popular cereal to find out.

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Are Frosted Cheerios Vegan?

Unfortunately, Frosted Cheerios are not vegan. This is because they include animal-derived components such as lanolin and bone char within their ingredients. For vegan alternatives popular with children try Envirokidz Choco Chimps or their Peanut Butter Panda Puff cereals.

Frosted Cheerios Ingredients

Frosted Cheerios Calories per 36g Serving Size: 140kcal

Whole grain oats
Corn starch
Corn syrup
Trisodium phosphate
Brown sugar syrup
Natural flavor
Vitamin E (mixed tocopherols) added to preserve freshness.
 Calcium carbonate, vitamin C (sodium ascorbate),
iron and zinc, A B vitamin(niacinamide),
vitamin B6 (pyridoxine hydrochloride),
vitamin B1 (thiamin mononitrate),
vitamin A (palmitate), vitamin B2 (riboflavin),
A B vitamin (folic acid), vitamin B12, vitamin D3.

Non-Vegan Ingredients In Frosted Cheerios

There are two non-vegan ingredients in Frosted Cheerios: Vitamin D and refined sugar.

Vitamin D3

Vitamin D3 is a vitamin that is important for bone health. It can be found in fortified foods or supplements, and it can also be produced by the body when exposed to sunlight. Vitamin D is commercially made from lanolin. Lanolin is a waxy substance derived from sheep’s wool. Given vitamin D is derived from an animal source, this means that breakfast cereals fortified with this are not vegan, however, they are suitable for vegetarians. (1)


The problem with sugar is because of its processing, not the actual ingredient itself. Sugar Cane is processed using bone char, which is made from animal bones heated at high temperatures. Bone char is widely used commercially to filter and whiten sugar. Although the sugar itself doesn’t contain fragments of bone – it’s the number of animals that are used to produce the bone char which is an issue. (2)

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Frosted Cheerios Dairy Free?

There are no dairy products listed in Frosted Cheerios. However, they are not certified as dairy-free and it’s unclear whether cross-contamination may occur during processing.

Are Frosted Cheerios Healthy?  

According to Healthline, Cheerios are low in fat and calories as well as loaded with vitamins and minerals. However, they do note that some varieties are high in sugar and low in protein and recommend choosing Multigrain as the healthier option with additional protein such as nuts and nut butter. (3)

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