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Are Oreos Dairy-Free?

Are Oreos Dairy-Free | Milk Allergy Mom

Always check labels as ingredients can change.

 

Welcome to Milk Allergy Mom. 

We often get many of our first time visitors at this page, happy to have you!

Let’s talk America’s favorite cookie.

Those with milk allergies or sensitivities want to know, “Are Oreos safe milk allergy?”

Are Oreos dairy-free?

According to our food allergy community…

many dairy-allergy families have great success with classic Oreos.

Myself included. 

And that’s some encouraging news to those new to milk allergy.

In fact, my family totes a package of Oreos to almost every social function we attend.

Yes, friends are always shocked that my anaphylactic milk allergy kiddo can actually eat some Oreos safely.    

A CHOCOLATE cookie with CREME?

 

It just didn’t sound right.

You may think the same thing.

I did, too, at first.

So I did a little digging and research and calling around to feel ok about giving my milk allergy son an Oreo.

Are Oreos Dairy-Free | Milk Allergy Mom

Before we dive into all the findings,

let me preface by saying this post has been updated several times through the past decade!  

This was one of my very first blog posts when my son was three. 

I first wrote this post in 2008 and just kept adding the latest information without deleting the old information.

The most recent findings are at the top while the older information is toward the bottom of the post.

But I keep it all posted because it’s interesting to see how the discussion has changed over the years.

This is a true example of what living with allergies is like.

We always have to be on our toes because products change!

OUR FAVORITE OREO RECIPES

If Oreos end up safe for your milk allergy family, be sure to try these delicious Oreo recipes!

Oreo Donuts

Easy Oreo Truffles

ALLERGY PARENT CONCERNS

Concerns have gone from “whey as an ingredient”…

to “what is the chocolate ingredient”…

to “UD Kosher label” concerns…

and now “manufacturing questions” are at the forefront.

I hope this information helps you.

And be sure to read the comments at the end, too.

Some milk allergic people report not having success with Oreos so use your best judgement,

and feel free to do your own research.

We would love to know if you find more information that we can add here.

ALLERGY-FRIENDLY COOKIE COMPANIES

If you need cookie companies that are more allergy-friendly, here some some we love. 

These are affiliate links so we can keep sharing. Thanks!

Home Free Cookies

Partake Cookies

Lucy’s Cookies (contain soy)

Enjoy Life Soft Bake

Enjoy Life Crunchy Cookies

All these brands above are amazing, and some were even created by fellow food allergy moms!

Now more about Oreo and food allergies. 

2016 UPDATE: MANUFACTURED IN MEXICO

Some food allergy families are reporting cross contamination reactions to flavored Oreos.

And Snack Safely now only includes Original and Double Stuff Oreos on their Safe Food Guide for NUT & PEANUT allergy families.

As a milk allergy family, though, I am concerned about cross contamination issues…

because in some plant somewhere Oreos are being dipped in chocolate and those do contain milk.

If cross contamination is happening with peanut and nut, I don’t want to take my chances with milk contamination.

So we also are now only letting our anaphylactic son have Original and Double Stuff Oreos.  

Allergy parents are hoping that production of Original and Double Stuff Oreos are on their own separate lines because of the mass amounts that are made.

We hope for a separate facility, but I’m not sure that’s the case.

Instead of mint Oreos, we are now making our own version of DIY Dairy-Free Thin Mint Cookies.  

And a new concern to mention is that Oreo recently moved hundreds of jobs to new production lines in Mexico.

This means more changes for us food allergy families to keep our eyes on.

We will keep you posted.

If you have information, please leave a comment to help.

Furthermore, Oreo just had to recall two varieties dipped in chocolate that weren’t labeled for milk.

Frustrating.

ALTERNATIVES TO OREOS

Here are some Oreo alternatives.

These are affiliate links at no extra cost to you.  🙂

Many of our readers prefer to eat Newman’s-O’s (affiliate).

Amazon says they are casein-free, dairy-free, egg-free, gmo-free, lactose-free, vegetarian, and vegan.

Please read labels for yourself as ingredients can change at any time.  

Also check out these dairy-free cookies (affiliate links) after checking labels for yourself:

Nutter Butters (contain wheat, soy, peanut)

2013 UPDATE: WHAT DOES THE NEW UD SYMBOL MEAN?

Oreos now have the U D symbol on the front of the package that means they are Kosher but they may….


1.  Contain milk or


2.  Be processed in a plant with milk

You can read more about Kosher labeling at Kids with Food Allergies.

One of our readers added:

“Actually UD simply means the equipment has been approved and blessed for kosher foods. When doing early research I found that Nabisco uses shared equipment, however they do a full allergy clean up between products. So while the dairy is gone all foods processed on the equipment still gets the kosher labeling.”

This UD warning is on many of the Nabisco items we safely eat:

Honey Maid Graham Crackers

Ritz Crackers

Nutter Butters

Oreo Cookies

Teddy Grahams

 

2008 UPDATE: WHAT IS THE “CHOCOLATE” INGREDIENT IN OREOS? 

That first “cocoa processed with alkali” is a milk-free chocolate.

But I do understand the concern on that last mention of “chocolate”.

I’m not sure what it is, either.

I remember questioning this from the get-go and calling the company after another milk allergy mom told me Oreos were milk-free.

I can’t remember exactly what the company told me at that time but it must have been assuring enough for us to try them.

And we did….with success.

My son loves Oreos, and has successfully eaten them for many years.

But now that some moms have expressed concern about the “chocolate” ingredient…

I’ve been on a renewed mission to get more scoop on this.

First, I called Nabisco and they told me in a round-about way that the cookies do not contain milk.

I asked about the last ingredient, chocolate…

and they said that if it was made from milk, it would contain the word “milk”….

such as “chocolate derived from milk” or “milk” put in parentheses.

They did say that if I had further concerns, I should call the Food Allergy and Anaplylaxis Network.

So I did call FAAN.

And they said I should look on their website at “how to read a label” for milk products.

I looked on there but I did not see this information except for a resource card that I could purchase.

If anyone else sees this information on the site, let me know.

I assume I am looking to see if “chocolate” would be listed as a milk ingredient.

In which case, I assume it WOULD be.

That is why this issue is tricky.

We all know, that in general, chocolate has milk.

But there ARE ways to do chocolate without milk.  

Cocoa with alkali or chocolate liquor.  

Maybe some others.

So I still feel like there’s not a real answer about the “chocolate” issue.

Although, I notice Teddy Grahams and Meijer Chocoalte Graham crackers also contain “chocolate” that doesn’t appear to contain dairy. Hmmmm….

2005 INFO: MINI OREO RECALL FOR MILK CONTAMINATION

On another interesting note, I found a milk allergy recall on Oreos from 2005.

The recall was for mini Oreos.

The mini Oreos were supposed to be milk free but a certain batch ended up with pieces of Ritz Bitz Cheese Sandwiches in them, thus contaminating the Oreos with milk.

The company, at the time, was saying there is not supposed to be milk in Mini Oreos.

With that said, I will copy and paste the ingredient list for Mini Oreos from the Nabisco website.

Notice chocolate is the last ingredient.

One concern, however, would be if the ingredients have changed from the time of the recall mentioned above and the posting of these current ingredients on the Nabisco website.

2005 INFO: OREO 100 CALORIE PACK THIN CRISPS MILK RECALL

Here’s another recall.

This is regarding Oreo 100 Calorie Pack Thin Crisps.

They were recalled because they were included in a variety box with Chips Ahoy Crisps.

The Chips Ahoy Crisps contained milk.

The Oreo Crisps did not.

But the box that contained both did not say milk was contained in the Chips Ahoy Crisps.

I can’t find the ingredient list for Oreo 100 Calorie Packs online.

But I would guess that they too have chocolate as an ingredient.

And if so, this recall is saying they should not contain milk.

Unless, of course, the ingredient list was different than it is now.

PETA OMITS ORIGINAL OREOS FROM VEGAN LIST?

Another concern that I have is that PETA’s “accidentally vegan” list omits regular Oreos.

I am not a PETA member.  

But I do like the accidentally vegan list because it gives me a reference for finding safe snacks.

I do remember consulting this list before trying Oreos, and I really thought they were on there as ok.

But I could be wrong.

Now the list only has “Spring Oreos”, “Uh Oh Oreos”, and “Chocolate Cream Oreos”.

So if regular Oreos aren’t on there, is it because PETA believes they contain milk?

SOME AVOID ALL ALLERGEN PRODUCTION LINES

There are some allergy parents who do not allow their children to have foods that are processed by companies that process other foods with their allergen.

For example, they would not let their children have Oreos, even if they were milk-free, because Nabisco makes products like Ritz Cheese Crackers.

Some parents like to find out specifically about facilities and production lines before they give their kids certain processed foods.

Kudos to the parents who take the time to check things out thoroughly.

SOME PARENTS DON’T ALLOW PROCESSED FOODS 

And then there are the parents who don’t want to feed their kids processed foods anyways.

They prefer to bake nutritious snacks at home.

Kudos to those moms, too!  

The best we do around here is maintain balance.

I have some convenient foods around but also like to make nutritious treats from scratch. 

2005: OREOS USED TO CONTAIN WHEY?

I got a chance to read some vegan message boards from recent years and learned a little more on this topic.

Vegans, like us allergy moms, have been trying to figure out if Oreos contain milk as well.

So now I don’t feel so “stupid”. Ha!

Obviously there is not an easy answer.

They mentioned a few interesting things.

One is that apparently Oreos are made in several different places and ingredients can vary by region.

Two is that Oreo has changed the ingredients at times.

Some were saying they used to contain whey and that was THEIR main topic at hand regarding milk.

They weren’t even discussing the “chocolate” ingredient as we are today.

I have not heard of them containing whey, but apparently that was one of the ingredients taken out some time back.

TELL US YOUR EXPERIENCE

Please comment on this post and tell us if your milk allergic child eats Oreos or if he/she has had a reaction to Oreos.  

Please include how severe the milk allergy is, as well.  

This info will help the hundreds of people who read this post each day.  

Thanks so much!  

We hope this information about Oreos has been helpful to you.

Always check labels for yourself. Ingredients can change.

 

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Mandie

Monday 26th of October 2020

From what I've read oreo shares equipment potentially so it would depend on how serious the allergy may be. Here is also a more recent stance from Peta on why their oreo status changed:

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.delish.com/food-news/news/amp58737/are-oreos-vegan/

Jamie Kaufmann

Monday 26th of October 2020

Thanks so much, Mandie!

Bella

Sunday 28th of June 2020

Hi, I think I may have laughed when I saw that UD means blessed by a rabbi. No no no. As an Orthodox Jew myself please let me explain. OUD- means Orthodox Union Dairy. Some Jews do not eat OUD and that means they used milk from a cow that wasn’t under constant supervision from a rabbi to make sure they didn’t swap out the cows milk for a horses milk or some other non kosher animal. But some food that does not contain milk is also marked OUD and there is an invisible E that means equipment so it is OUDE really and it contains no dairy. All you moms of lactate allergic kids can call the OU to ask them what’s dairy and what’s not.

Kelley

Thursday 5th of March 2020

I am a stay at home grandma and I just want to thank you for this blog. My granddaughter has a milk allergy and my grandson has a legume allergy so I am newly learning how to find foods and snacks they can eat and how To read labels. God bless you💛

Jamie Kaufmann

Thursday 19th of March 2020

You're such a good grandma, Kelley. I'm very happy to help. God bless!

Hilary

Thursday 18th of April 2019

UK here. My 13 yr old is allergic to Dairy, however he doesn’t need an Epi pen , as his main reactions are tummy pain, bloating and diarrhoea. His symptoms seemed to be lessening as he gets older, although does mostly avoid milk, including baked in . We read the labels and saw on some sites that Oreos were being described as Vegan. He loved them but after a number of instances of being violently sick, decided to reread the labels for the 100 th time .In UK allergens are written in BOLD in the label . Could not see any milk but at the end it states “May Contain Milk . “ I don’t think this means cross contamination, as this is usually worded as “made in a factory that handles milk . “ To cut a long story short , we cut out the Oreos and the sickness stopped . I find it all very suspect

Jamie Kaufmann

Monday 22nd of April 2019

Thank you for sharing, Hilary.

Leah

Sunday 28th of January 2018

Australian here. My little one is allergic to eggs dairy and peanuts. We didnt have a problem with oreoes pirchased from a hsa grocer. However he reacted to Australian oreoes. I normally read ingredients religiously it wasnt untill last night (on the pack) i saw that they are now processed on equipment that process milk and peanut products.

Jamie Kaufmann

Tuesday 30th of January 2018

Thank you for sharing that, Leah. And I'm sorry. :( We love our allergy friends in Australia, some are even in our membership group. :)

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