Do Sour Patch Kids Have Gelatin in Them? It Depends on This

Do Sour Patch Kids Have Gelatin

Do Sour Patch Kids Have Gelatin?

After writing an article previously on the topic of Sour Patch Kids being Vegetarian or Vegan, we were walking downtown and happened to stumble into a candy store.  I noticed the Sour Patch Kids on the shelf and had to take a look at the box and ingredients to see if these Sour Patch Kids have gelatin in them.  One of the main concerns when deciding if they were vegetarian or vegan, was the use of gelatin.  So, did these have gelatin, and do Sour Patch Kids have gelatin in them?  That’s a little bit of a debate, so I’ll try to answer that specific question here and show what I found.

What is Gelatin?

Gelatin in gummy bears

Gelatin found in gummy bears

Gelatin or gelatine is a flavorless food ingredient.  More specifically, it’s a protein that is derived from collagen taken from animal body parts.  Parts such as the animal skin, tendons and bones are boiled in water to create gelatin.  It’s usually made from cows or pigs.

Gelatin is gummy when wet, and so it is used in food to create a gummy or gelatinous consistency.  It’s usually found in desserts such as Jell-O, marshmallows, candy corn, gummy bears and more.  It’s also used as a stabilizer in margarine, yogurt, cream cheese and also in some types of Chinese dumplings.  Learn more about gelatin.

Do Sour Patch Kids Have Gelatin in Them?

So the question of if Sour Patch Kids have gelatin has been debated and given different answers online.  And there’s a reason for this.  What I discovered is that Sour Patch Kids makes different versions of their candy, and it depends on the producer in each location.

U.S. Sour Patch Kids that don't have gelatin

In the U.S. Sour Patch Kids don’t have gelatin as an ingredient

So what do I mean?  Well Sour Patch Kids that are made in the United States generally have not had gelatin in them.  They are gelatin free and use modified corn syrup and corn starch as the gelling agent, the thing that makes them gummy.  Take a look at the image to the right that I took of the Sour Patch Kids box here in the United States.  You’ll notice that there is no gelatin listed in the ingredients.  Instead, you find modified corn syrup and corn starch as two of the top ingredients.

In my case, I live in the United States, and for the box that I looked at in the store, the Sour Patch Kids did not have gelatin.

Also, if you see Sour Patch Kids American webpage, you will also see that gelatin is not listed in the ingredients.

So, does that mean that Sour Patch Kids don’t have gelatin in them?

Well, not necessarily.  Apparently, Sour Patch Kids that are made in the U.K. have been found to list gelatin as an ingredient on the box.  If you notice the picture below, you will see gelatin listed as an ingredient.  This is probably because the manufacturer of the Sour Patch Kids in that area, is using a different recipe to make them.

U.K. Sour Patch Kids have Gelatin in them

In the U.K. Sour Patch Kids have gelatin listed as an ingredient

So really to determine if Sour Patch Kids have gelatin in them, you will have to look at the nutrition label wherever you are.  If you live in the U.S., you will probably be o.k. if you are looking to avoid gelatin.  But, it is best to check the ingredients first before buying or eating.  You never know when this might change, or if this is consistent for all parts of the U.S.

Do you live in a particular area and have found Sour Patch Kids have gelatin or don’t have gelatin?  Leave a comment below!

Sour Patch Kids Ingredients

Let’s look at the Sour Patch Kids Ingredients to see if they do have gelatin.  For the U.S., here are the ingredients:

  • SUGAR
  • INVERTSUGAR
  • CORN SYRUP
  • MODIFIED CORN STARCH
  • CONTAINS LESS THAN 2% OF TARTARIC ACID,CITRIC ACID,NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR,YELLOW 6,RED 40,YELLOW 5,BLUE 1.

As you can see, the Sour Patch Kids do not have gelatin in the ingredients list in the U.S.

For those in the U.K. or possibly elsewhere, here is the ingredient list as seen on a package of Sour Patch Kids.

  • Sugar
  • Glucose Syrup
  • Water
  • Starch
  • Gelatine
  • Acid (malic acid)
  • Concentrated apple juice
  • Colours (anthocyanins, vegetable carbon, paprika extract, lutein, curcumin)
  • Acidity regulator (calcium citrates)
  • Palm oil
  • Flavourings

So, as you can see, the ingredients are quite different for this version of Sour Patch Kids.  And, gelatine, which is gelatin, is listed as an ingredient.  So the Sour Patch Kids do have gelatin in the U.K.  Also, you can kind of tell it’s a U.K. packaging, due to the different spelling of colours, rather than the American word, colors.  And, it clearly lists the U.K. in the lower left side of the package under its company information.

Are Sour Patch Kids Vegan?

Many Vegans are looking to avoid gelatin.  This is because it is an animal product and is made from animal parts.  Peta lists gelatin as non-vegan friendly.

So, if  in your area the Sour Patch Kids have gelatin, then they won’t be vegan friendly.  And it the Sour Patch Kids you find your country, don’t have gelatin, technically they will be void of animal products.

But some Vegans are strict and don’t want to consume or use any products that have been tested on animals.  Sour Patch Kids have food colors and dyes which have been tested on animals to measure safety.  Also, sometimes red dyes are made from the dried bodies of female beetles.  If you are a Vegan looking to avoid these kind of products, then Sour Patch Kids will not be Vegan.

You will have to check the packaging in the country you live in to determine if they have gelatin.  If you are a strict Vegan, then all versions of Sour Patch Kids will have food colorings that are tested on animals.

See the post on Are Sour Patch Kids Vegan? for more on this topic.

Can Vegetarians Have Sour Patch Kids?

This issue is similar to the one for Vegans but is less strict.

If the country you are in such as the United States, produces Sour Patch Kids that don’t contain gelatin, then you will not be consuming any animal products by eating them.  Sour Patch Kids will be vegetarian friendly in this case.

If the country you are in such as the U.K. lists gelatin as an ingredient and uses it to make the Sour Patch Kids, then they will not be vegetarian friendly.  You will be consuming parts of animals by eating them.

You will need to check the ingredient list of the Sour Patch Kids in your area to see if the Sour Patch Kids have gelatin listed as an ingredient, to determine if they are ok for vegetarian consumption.

For more info, see Are Sour Patch Kids Vegetarian?

Are Sour Patch Watermelon Vegan?

You can read the full answer to this at Are Sour Patch Watermelon Vegan?

The Sour Patch Watermelon are basically the same as the ingredients for the regular Sour Patch Kids.  So, everything we mentioned before would apply in the same way.  The only extra ingredient is Titanium Dioxide.

So just as before, it is best to check the label in the area that you are purchasing the Sour Patch Watermelon candies to see if gelatin is listed as an ingredient or not.  And, if you are a strict Vegan, they will not be Vegan since there will be some artificial colors that have been tested on animals.

Sour Patch Watermelon Ingredients

Here are the ingredients for Sour Patch Watermelon as listed on their site.

  • SUGAR
  • INVERTSUGAR
  • CORN SYRUP
  • MODIFIED CORN STARCH
  • CITRIC ACID
  • TARTARIC ACID
  • NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR
  • TITANIUM DIOXIDE
  • RED 40
  • YELLOW 5
  • BLUE 1.

As the ingredients listed here, gelatin is not present.  The gumming agent is corn syrup and modified corn starch.  So the Sour Patch Watermelon do not have gelatin.

What Candy Does Not Have Gelatin?

Candy bars with no gelatin

Candy bars with no gelatin

If you find that your Sour Patch Kids have gelatin in them, or you are looking for an alternative candy which does not have gelatin, you have plenty of options.  Most candies do not have gelatin in them.  The common ones to avoid are Gummy Bears, Candy Corn (non-vegan kind), Gummy Worms, Starburst.

Here are some candies that you can have if you are looking to avoid gelatin.

  • Dots
  • Pixy Stix
  • Sweet Tarts
  • Jolly Ranchers
  • Lollipops
  • Smarties
  • JujuBes
  • Mary Janes
  • Dark Chocolate
  • Swedish Fish
  • Twizzlers
  • Skittles
  • Nerds
  • Airheads
  • Snickers
  • Fireballs
  • Pez
  • Twix
  • Milky Way
  • Kit Kat

You can also check out this site’s section on Vegan Candy.

Do Swedish Fish Have Gelatin?

It’s thought that they do because of their texture, but Swedish Fish do not have any gelatin.

Final Thoughts

So, if you are wondering if Sour Patch Kids have gelatin in them, the answer is, it depends.  It will be based on your location which changes who manufactured the candy and what ingredients were used.  Generally, in the United States, gelatin is not used in making Sour Patch Kids.  The gelling agent is corn syrup and corn starch.

In the U.K. however, gelatin has been found to be used and listed as an ingredient.

The only way to know is to either go by these guidelines if you live in one of these countries, or check the nutrition label of the Sour Patch Kids in your area that you are wanting to purchase

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