Is Nutella Vegan Friendly? (No, Here’s Why)

Is Nutella Vegan Friendly

Nutella has become a widely beloved dessert spread for over 50 years. With numerous varieties of Nutella products on the market it’s no wonder people are reaching for this hazelnut spread for an indulgent treat but, what is in this spread besides hazelnut and cocoa? Is Nutella a vegan-friendly spread?

No, Nutella is not considered vegan-friendly. Nutella contains skim milk in its ingredients list, an animal byproduct. The good news is that many companies have created vegan-friendly hazelnut spreads very similar to Nutella. The best vegan friendly alternatives to Nutella include Artisana Organic Hazelnut Cacao Spread, Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut and Almond Butter, and Gooey Hazelnut Cocoa Spread.

Now that we know Nutella is not considered vegan-approved, let’s take a deeper look at Nutella, its health benefits, and drawbacks and some suitable vegan-friendly options. 

Is Nutella Healthy?

Since Nutellas debut, this creamy spread was known as a dessert topping. Over recent decades, Ferrero, the Italian company that created Nutella, has begun advertising their hazelnut cocoa spread as a breakfast topping and even hinted at it being a healthy addition to one’s diet. Although it is made from hazelnuts and often advertised as containing simple ingredients, is Nutella really healthy for us? Let’s take a look.

Health Benefits of Nutella

One of the positives of Nutella as a breakfast topping is that it does contain simple, natural ingredients. Aside from Vanillin, an artificial vanilla flavoring, Nutella is free of high fructose corn syrup and artificial colors which make this product more favorable to those looking to avoid those additives.

Ferrero also works hard to use sustainable ingredients in their Nutella product, such as certified sustainable palm oil and cocoa powder. Nutella does contain a small amount of certain nutrients, such as calcium and iron. However, overall, it is not highly nutritious. If consumed in moderation, Nutella can be a part of a healthy diet but is discouraged from consuming in excess. 

Health Drawbacks of Nutella

Although Nutella contains relatively limited ingredients, its main ingredients are sugar and fat. For those who don’t know, the ingredients list on a food label goes in order of predominance, with the foods used in the greatest amounts being first on the list. Nutella’s first two ingredients are sugar and palm oil. This is what gives Nutella its signature flavor and creamy texture, however it’s not something we want to be eating a ton of for the sake of our health and our waistline.

The American Heart Association recommends no more than 6-teaspoons of added sugar per day for women (25 grams) and no more than 9 teaspoons for men (38 grams). With 21 grams of added sugar per 2-tablespoon serving, Nutella contains about the maximum recommended intake of sugar for an entire day for women and over half for men. High intake of added sugars in the diet is linked to various chronic diseases including obesity, diabetes, and heart disease [1].

Does Nutella Cause Weight Gain?

Nutella is high in fat content which increases the caloric density of the product. Fat contains roughly 9 calories per gram compared to carbohydrates and protein which only contain 4 calories per gram. With 11 grams of fat per serving, Nutella’s calories are derived from fifty percent fat.

Because of its creamy texture and sweet flavor, many find it challenging to stick with the 2-tablespoon serving size. At 200 calories per serving, eating past the serving size on a regular basis can significantly increase risk for overweight and obesity. Those who are overweight or obese are at higher risk for developing chronic conditions such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, osteoarthritis and even mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety [2, 3].

Although it is a risk for those who over-consume Nutella, the spread itself will not cause weight gain. Weight gain is a result of a cumulation of habits, often including chronic over-eating, physical inactivity, and high intake of processed foods. By choosing these foods, such as Nutella, in moderation, watching portion sizes and adding in movement, risk for overweight and obesity is decreased significantly [4].

Nutrition Facts for Nutella


  • Sugar
  • Palm oil
  • Hazelnuts
  • Skim milk
  • Cocoa
  • Soy lecithin (as an emulsifier)
  • Vanillin (an artificial flavor)

Nutrition Facts (Per 2-tablespoons):

  • Calories 200
  • Fat 11g
  • Saturated fat 4g
  • Sodium 15mg
  • Carbohydrates 22g
  • Sugar 21g
    • Added sugar 21g
  • Fiber 1g
  • Protein 2g

Healthier Vegan-Friendly Alternatives to Nutella

Because of the growing trend of plant-based diets combined with love for this classic staple spread, many companies have created their own, vegan-friendly versions. Below are some of the top-rated chocolate hazelnut spreads that work well as replacements for Nutella in recipes or as a topping for baked goods.

Artisana Organic Hazelnut Cacao Spread

Vegan-friendly and completely free of palm oil, Artisana organic hazelnut cacao spread is lower in added sugars, carbohydrates and saturated fats compared to Nutella with the same rich flavor. With a short and simple ingredients list, this spread is approved by many health-conscious consumers. You can find this product online at various retail sites, including Thrive Market, priced at $10.29 for an 8-ounce jar. 


  • Organic hazelnuts
  • Organic coconut sugar
  • Organic cacao powder
  • Organic coconut MCT oil
  • Organic vanilla extract
    • Organic sucrose
    • Organic vanilla oleoresin

Nutrition Facts (Per 2-tablespoons):

  • Calories 170
  • Fat 13g
  • Saturated fat 1.5g
  • Sodium 20mg
  • Carbohydrates 14g
  • Sugar 9g
    • Added sugar 9g
  • Fiber 3g
  • Protein 4g

Gooey Hazelnut Cocoa Spread

Marketed on their website to contain “low sugar, no dairy, no palm oil and no bad vibes!” Gooey hazelnut spread is vegan-friendly and gluten-free, with half the calories and lower sugar compared to Justin’s chocolate hazelnut and almond butter spread. The secret is in the liquid allulose, a zero-calorie sweetener used to make this product taste as guilty as it sounds without the added calories and sugar. You can find this product online at, priced at $9.99 for a 10-ounce jar.


  • Hazelnut butter
  • Organic agave syrup
  • Liquid allulose
  • Cocoa powder
  • Sunflower lecithin
  • Natural flavor
  • Cultured dextrose
  • Salt

Nutrition Facts (Per 2-tablespoons):

  • Calories 110
  • Fat 8g
  • Saturated fat 1g
  • Sodium 30mg
  • Carbohydrates 13g
  • Sugar 6g
    • Added sugar 5g
  • Fiber 1g
  • Protein 2g

Additional Vegan-Friendly Alternatives to Nutella

Justin’s Chocolate Hazelnut and Almond Butter

Justin's Chocolate Hazelnut and Almond Butter, Organic Cocoa, No Stir, Gluten-free, Responsibly Sourced, Packaging May Vary, 16oz Jar Gluten-free, egg-free, shellfish-free, milk-free, and wheat-free, Justin’s chocolate hazelnut and almond butter spread is allergy-friendly for most and indulgent tasting for all. Made with simple ingredients, not only is Justin’s chocolate hazelnut spread vegan-friendly, but it also contains half the amount of carbohydrates and nearly one-third the number of added sugars as Nutella.

You can find this product in-store or online at various retail locations, including Publix and Walmart, priced at $13.29 for a 16-ounce container.


  • Dry roasted hazelnuts
  • Dry roasted almonds
  • Organic powdered sugar
    • Organic cane sugar
    • Organic tapioca starch
  • Organic cocoa powder
  • Organic cocoa butter
  • Palm oil
  • Sea salt

Nutrition Facts (Per 2-tablespoons):

  • Calories 200
  • Fat 16g
  • Saturated fat 3g
  • Sodium 90mg
  • Carbohydrates 11g
  • Sugar 8g
    • Added sugar 8g
  • Fiber 2g
  • Protein 4g

Peanut Butter and Co. Dark Chocolatey Hazelnut Spread

Peanut Butter & Co. Dark Chocolatey Hazelnut Spread, 13 Ounce Jar (Pack of 6) Another suitable vegan-friendly alternative to the beloved Nutella is Peanut Butter and Co. dark chocolatey hazelnut spread. With slightly less added sugar than Nutella and significantly more fiber from chicory root extract, this hazelnut spread has the same smooth, creamy texture. This product is widely available in-store or online at various retail sites, including Walmart, priced at $5.99 for a 13-ounce jar.


  • Cane sugar
  • Cocoa powder
  • Hazelnuts
  • Palm oil
  • Chicory root extract
  • Lecithin from sunflowers

Nutrition Facts (Per 2-tablespoons):

  • Calories 220
  • Fat 11g
  • Saturated fat 4g
  • Sodium 0mg
  • Carbohydrates 21g
  • Sugar 15g
    • Added sugar 14g
  • Fiber 6g
  • Protein 3g

Nutiva Organic Vegan Hazelnut Spread

Nutiva Organic Vegan Hazelnut Spread, Classic Chocolate, 13 Oz, USDA Organic, Non-GMO, Fair Trade & Sustainably Sourced, Vegan & Gluten-Free, Plant-Based Spread with Less Sugar USDA certified organic, non-GMO, certified vegan, gluten-free, and zero waste, Nutiva organic vegan hazelnut spread shares the rich texture and flavor of Nutella without the animal products. It contains similar calorie and fat content to Nutella but slightly lower added sugars and an impressive amount of fiber per serving. You can find this product online or in-store at various retailers, including Walmart and Amazon, priced at $5.58 for a 13-ounce jar.


  • Cane sugar
  • Cocoa powder
  • Palm oil
  • Flaxseed powder
  • Inulin
  • Hazelnut
  • Palm olein
  • Palm stearin
  • Refined coconut oil
  • Chia seed oil
  • Sunflower lecithin
  • Natural flavors

Nutrition Facts (Per 2-tablespoons):

  • Calories 210
  • Fat 13g
  • Saturated fat 5g
  • Sodium 0mg
  • Carbohydrates 20g
  • Sugar 12g
    • Added sugar 12g
  • Fiber 7g
  • Protein 3g

Related Questions

Does Nutella Have Caffeine?

Most chocolate contains small amounts of caffeine. Caffeine is found in cocoa, therefore the darker the chocolate the higher the caffeine intake. Nutella has about 3mg of caffeine per 2-tablespoon serving size. To put that into perspective, an 8-ounce cup of black coffee contains about 95mg of caffeine.

Does Nutella Go Bad?

Yes, like any food item Nutella is susceptible to spoilage. The biggest indicator that your Nutella has started to go bad is the change in texture. Fresh Nutella is soft, creamy, and easily spreadable while Nutella that has gone bad will be dry, hard to spread and have an off odor.

Can You Freeze Nutella?

Yes, for those looking to increase the shelf life of Nutella, you can put it in the freezer. The only downside to freezing Nutella is a change in texture. Previously frozen Nutella may be hard, and the texture can become grainy.

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Meghan Stoops

Meghan Stoops is a Registered Dietitian and Licensed Nutritionist born and raised in San Jose, California. Growing up she struggled with disordered eating and poor self-image. On a journey to learn to love herself, she discovered a passion for nutrition and dietetics. Dedicated to helping others learn the healing powers of food, Meghan uses the platform of writing to help make nutrition simple for everyone.

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