Is Near East Rice Pilaf Vegan 2023? All Flavors Reviewed

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Near East Rice Pilaf is a delicious, easy to make dish that is perfect for any occasion. This dish is made with rice, vegetables, and spices, and can be served as a side dish or a main course. Near East Rice Pilaf is a healthy and flavorful option for those looking for a quick and easy meal. But is Near East Rice Pilaf vegan?

Near East Rice Pilaf Original is vegan because it doesn’t contain any animal-sourced ingredients. More flavors might be vegan, but they contain natural flavors.

Below is a table showing Near East Rice Pilaf flavors and its vegan status.

FlavorVegan Status
Brown RiceMaybe, contains Natural Flavors.
ChickenNo, contains Natural Chicken Flavor.
SpanishMaybe, contains Natural Flavors. (From FAQ seems like NL is not vegan.)
Garlic & HerbMaybe, contains Natural Flavors.
Roasted Chicken & GarlicNo, contains Natural Chicken Flavor & Honey.
Long Grain & Wild Rice – OriginalMaybe, contains Natural Flavors.
Long Grain & Wild Rice – Garlic & HerbMaybe, contains Natural Flavors.
Toasted AlmondMaybe, contains Natural Flavors.
Mushroom & HerbMaybe, contains Natural Flavors.

Near East Rice Pilaf Ingredients

Below is a list of ingredients from all the flavors that I could find.

  • Almonds
  • Autolyzed Yeast Extract
  • Basil
  • Bay Leaf (Dried)
  • Dried Autolyzed Yeast Extract
  • Dried Carrots
  • Dried Garlic
  • Dried Parsley
  • Durum Wheat Flour
  • Garlic
  • Herbs (Dried)
  • Honey (Dried)
  • Marjoram
  • Mild Red Peppers
  • Molasses (Dried)
  • Mushrooms (Dried)
  • Natural Chicken Flavor
  • Natural Flavors
  • Olive Oil
  • Onions
  • Oregano
  • Orzo (Macaroni Product Made From Wheat Flour)
  • Paprika Spice and Annatto Extract Which Impart Color
  • Parboiled Long Gain Rice
  • Parboiled Long Grain Brown Rice
  • Parsley
  • Pearled Wheat
  • Red Bell Peppers (Dried)
  • Rice
  • Rosemary
  • Rosemary (Dried)
  • Sage
  • Salt
  • Salt Autolyzed Yeast Extract (Dried)
  • Sesame Oil
  • Soy Protein
  • Soy Protein Isolate
  • Soy Sauce (Dried)
  • Spices
  • Sugar
  • Thyme (Dried)
  • Toasted Sesame Seed Oil
  • Tocopherols For Freshness
  • Tomatoes (Dried)
  • Turmeric (Color)
  • Wheat
  • Wheat Flour
  • Wild Rice
  • Yeast Extract


As always I’ve highlighted the ingredients that we need to take a closer look at.

Non-Vegan Ingredients

Natural Chicken Flavor

This ingredient not vegan-friendly because it contains flavors derived from chickens.


Another non-vegan ingredient is honey which is made from bees.

Questionable Ingredients


Sugar is something that vegans tend to be cautious about because of the possibility of bone char. In candy and sweets, the most common sugar is cane sugar and this type of sugar needs to be refined before added to a product. In this process the sugar is also bleached a common practice is to use bone char from dead cows and if asking a vegan that sugar would be seen as non-vegan.

The product we are reviewing today is rice and it’s not very likely that cane sugar has been used but rather beet sugar. But the source is not disclosed so we have to be open to the possibility that it might be cane sugar. If you have concerns about the sugar then the best way forward would be to contact the company about the source.

Natural Flavors

Now natural flavors is one very tricky ingredient for vegans, because it can consist of many different ingredients, which could be sourced from both animals and plants. This makes this natural flavors very unpredictable when it comes to its vegan status.

If a product is labeled vegan from a trusted organisation such as or vegan society then yes, the natural flavor in that product would be vegan-friendly. There is an interesting article at National Geographic where they found out that butt goo from beavers can be used in vanilla flavor. So there is no end to what companies can but in different flavors.


With the original flavor being, more could be and the ingredient that is uncertain for vegans is the natural flavor. The source is not disclosed and the products are not labeled vegan, so we need to be careful. It this is your favorite rice, then I would suggest to company and ask if these ingredients are vegan.

Thanks for reading, take care!

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