Most beers are made with yeast, barley malt, hops, and water. As such, they are clearly vegan beverages. While some may stray from the norm, you’ll find that most beer is largely vegan-friendly, which brings us to today’s investigative report.
Stella Artois is a very popular pilsner that you can find in many stores and bars. And due to its popularity, we thought it important to find out whether Stella Artois is among the many existing vegan alcoholic beverages.
So stick around to learn what we discovered about this beer, what Budweiser has to say about it, and Stella Artois is safe for vegan diets.
What Is Stella Artois?
Coming on its 100th anniversary, Stella Artois has been around for quite some time now. First introduced in 1926, this beer was initially brewed by Brouwerij Artois, a Dutch brewery. Stella Artois began its life as a Christmas pilsner. It performed so well that it eventually became available year-round.
Today, Stella Artois is produced in various parts of the world, such as in its country of origin of Belgium and in the United Kingdom. Stella Artois started out with 5.2% ABV in Belgium but was later reduced in other markets to comply with their respective countries.
Moreover, Stella Artois is today owned by the Anheuser-Busch InBev conglomerate. They produce the likes of Budweiser, Busch, Becks, and a slew of beer brands. Anheuser-Busch nabbed Stella Artois when they acquired InBev back in 2008.
As far as the general consensus on Stella Artois, it’s hard to pin down. It seems there are just as many people who love as there who don’t. But the pilsner beer must be largely good due to its meteoric rise over the past century.
Heineken vs. Stella Artois
There’s no question that both brands sell well. Stella Artois is Belgium’s most popular beer, outselling all other brands. It also took home the World’s Best International Lager title in 2019.
Heineken, on the other hand, serves a staggering 25 million lagers every day across nearly all 195 countries (192, to be exact). Moreover, Heineken is now a $7 billion beer brand, making it the second most valuable one in the world.
In the United States, Stella Artois is the seventh best-selling beer, whereas Heineken is the fourth. So, which one tastes better? Upon looking at their content, it’s plain to see that both brands use the same ingredients (mild citrus, malt, and yeast).
But Stella Artois carries a more pronounced taste, while Heineken’s is a tad brighter. Also, Stella Artois seems to be the sweeter of the two. Other sources claim that Heineken and Stella Artois are virtually indistinguishable, but we kindly disagree.
There’s no denying the fact that they are very similar in both taste and presentation. But if you prefer a slightly sweeter lager, Stella Artois is right up your alley. Heineken seems like it hangs around on your taste buds a bit longer than Stella, so there’s that.
Still, you can’t go wrong with either brand by our estimation. There’s a reason both are wildly popular all around the world. Heineken and Stella Artois have mastered the art of the lager, and it’s unlikely that they will be unseated any time soon.
Also, both lagers are sheer perfection with foods like pasta, pizza, and wings. If you’re out dining and you see either brand on the menu, give them a try. You may find that they provide the perfect companion to your meal.
So, Is Stella Artois Vegan?
Over the years, many people have reached out to Anheuser-Busch InBev to ask if Stella Artois is a vegan lager. The response has remained the same with each inquiry: Stella Artois is absolutely vegan, as are many of its additional flavors.
It comes down to the lager’s ingredients and manufacturing process. The original Stella Artois ingredients include maize, malted barley, hops, and water. As such, it is suitable for vegan diets.
As we examined other Stella Artois offerings, we were pleased to learn that the vast majority of beers are indeed vegan, as well. Take Stella Artois Pear Cidre, for example. It’s a popular variation of traditional Stella Artois that is loved by many.
Its ingredients are all vegan-friendly, so you can freely partake without fear of interring with your diet. Likewise, Stella 4% (ABV) is also a pro-vegan lager. The only exception that we discovered to be non-vegan is Stella Artois Apple Cidre.
This variant is made with orchard apples, water, malic acid (for tartness), sugars (and glucose syrup), sulfites (for freshness), cochineal and caramel (for color). As such, Stella Artois Apple Cidre is non-vegan.
It’s worth noting that InBev stopped using glues made with casein to adhere its beer labels to bottles. So it’s nice to see that the company has made a conscious effort to remain as vegan as possible.
In addition, all InBev beers are vegan-friendly, with the only exceptions being Stella Artois Apple Cidre and Boddingtons – Cask Conditioned.
Is Stella Artois a Good Choice for Vegans?
Absolutely. From the lager’s ingredients to its production process, there is nothing present that vegans would take issue with. What’s more, InBev deserves accolades for doing what it can to eliminate animal products from its manufacturing.
The decision to use casein-free glues isn’t something a company just does on the fly. There must have been a conscious plan to be more pro-vegan. InBev has been doing this since at least October 2018, according to emails. So they have evidently been in favor of this movement for some time now.
Are you craving some Stella Artois now? If you decide to run to your nearest supplier to pick up some of the famous lager, be sure to visit our guide on vegan-friendly foods. There, you will find plenty of vegan dinner ideas to go with your beer.