Hot Cheetos are mostly loved by all spice lovers. The tangy flavor of spice grains and cheeses makes them super addictive. Many ask questions like what is in hot Cheetos? Do hot Cheetos have pork?
Hot Cheetos is a cornmeal snack made from grain products, Maltodextrin, artificial colors, spices, seasonings, and processed cheese. You can see that the ingredient list doesn’t have anything related to pork. But there is an ingredient mentioned as “natural flavoring” that may contain some enzymes derived from pork.
This can not be said for sure that there is no pork in Cheetos, rather there is a high-range possibility to have pork in Cheetos Flamin’ hot flavored crisps.
What Do Hot Cheetos Taste Like?
As mentioned earlier, the hot Cheetos are very addictive, so the taste must be super tangy but that’s not all. Flamin’ Hot Cheetos have an immense level of pungency so many find Cheetos too spicy.
But my experience with Cheetos is very tempting I can say. I feel they have a very spicy cheesy flavor, very similar to the mixture of strong cheddar cheese and cayenne pepper.
Overall, if you are a fan of spicy foods, then there is no doubt you would love them.
Hot Cheetos Ingredients
The recipe for hot Cheetos is top secret. However, food industries are expected to reveal specific ingredients on their labeling. This is for safety purposes that need to fulfill specific food safety criteria to have the option to guarantee that the food is vegan, gluten-free, vegetarian, or not. Here is the list of the ingredients.
- Enriched Corn Meal
- Vegetable Oil
- Flamin’ Hot Seasoning
Enriched Corn Meal:
Enriched cornmeal is a mixture of components. They are:
- Ferrous Sulfate (FeSO₄·xH₂O.)
- Thiamin Mononitrate (Vitamin B1)
- Niacin (Vitamin B3)
- Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)
- Folic Acid
- Corn Oil
- Canola Oil
- Sunflower Oil
All of these oils are mixed in vegetable oil, but it is not clear whether sunflower oil and canola oil are both present or only one of them.
Flamin’ Hot Cheetos Seasoning:
It is where all of the cheeses, artificial flavorings, and other ingredients come in. We’re going to ramble a bit here, so please bear with us to know what’s actually in your favorite hot Cheetos.
- Yeast Extract
- Monosodium Glutamate
- Maltodextrin (made out of corn)
- Sunflower Oil
- Cheddar Cheese (made out of Milk, Cheese Cultures, Salt, and Enzymes)
- Citric Acid
- Onion Powder
- Natural Flavor
- Artificial Color
- Disodium Inosinate
- Sodium Diacetate
- Disodium Guanylate
- Garlic Powder
- Whey Protein Concentrate
These all look fine to us. But there is something more inside. What are natural flavor and artificial color?
As defined by the FDA, natural flavoring is a substance extracted or similarly derived from plants, fruits, herbs, veggies, barks, roots, etc. or animal meat (pork, beef, chicken, etc.), dairy products, and eggs via heating, whose primary function in food is flavoring and not nutritional. This may impact a great effect on vegans as they are not supposed to consume anything that comes from an animal.
Again, the artificial color labeled here contains Yellow 5, Red 40 Lake, Yellow 6 Lake, and Yellow 6. These artificial colors are officially banned in Europe. Because artificial colors can cause attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADD/ADHD) in kids as well as other health issues.
Can Vegetarians Eat Hot Cheetos?
The vegetarian diet is slightly different from the vegan diet. They consume dairy products, However, the answer is “NO”.
The natural flavoring added in these crisps likely has pork enzyme or animal enzyme. This means Cheetos is not for vegetarians. Even if you are ready to assume that the enzymes are used in a plant-based environment, Flamin’ would market their famous hot Cheetos as a vegetarian product.
Additionally, for vegans, the cheddar is already here. So, anyone who is following a vegan or vegetarian diet, should not consume this product.
Is Hot Cheetos Halal?
If you have read above, you have guessed that hot Cheetos are not halal. They contain animal enzymes and the food industries haven’t specified which enzyme is used. We all know that for preparing cheddar cheese the most common enzyme is used, called rennet.
The rennet is a substance extracted from the stomach tissue of a slaughtered animal. It usually comes from the stomach lining of newborn animals, especially piglets.
Cheetos are undoubtedly flavorful but not healthy at all. Vegetarians or vegans should not consume Cheetos. If questioned about halal or haram, Cheetos are not labeled as halal as well, cause they may contain pork, even if not directly but indirectly!