Is Papa John’S Garlic Sauce Vegan? Examining The Ingredients

Papa John’s is popular for its delicious pizza, wings, and sides like cheesy breadsticks. The garlic sauce served with these items is creamy, garlicky, and addicting. But is Papa John’s garlic sauce actually vegan?

As more people adopt plant-based diets or look to reduce animal products, many want to know if this tasty sauce aligns with vegan eating.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Unfortunately, Papa John’s garlic sauce is not vegan. It contains milk and cheese products.

Papa John’s Garlic Sauce Ingredients

Milk and Milk Products

One of the main concerns for vegans when it comes to Papa John’s Garlic Sauce is whether it contains any milk or milk products. Unfortunately, the answer is yes. The ingredients list clearly states that the sauce contains buttermilk, a dairy product derived from cow’s milk.

This means that the sauce is not suitable for those following a vegan diet or those with lactose intolerance.

Natural Flavors

Another ingredient that raises questions for vegans is “natural flavors.” While the term “natural” may sound vegan-friendly, it is important to note that it can be quite vague. Natural flavors can refer to a wide range of substances, some of which may be derived from animal sources.

Unfortunately, Papa John’s does not provide specific information about the source of their natural flavors. Therefore, it is best for vegans to err on the side of caution and assume that the natural flavors in the garlic sauce may not be vegan.


Preservatives are commonly used in food products to extend their shelf life and prevent spoilage. Papa John’s Garlic Sauce contains a preservative called sodium benzoate. While sodium benzoate itself is vegan, the concern for some vegans lies in the method of production.

Sodium benzoate can be produced either synthetically or through the fermentation of certain bacteria. If it is produced through the fermentation of non-vegan ingredients, then it may not be considered vegan-friendly.

It is worth noting that the ingredients in food products can change over time, so it is always a good idea to check the ingredient list or contact Papa John’s directly for the most up-to-date information.

Additionally, there are some vegan-friendly options available for those who still want to enjoy the flavors of Papa John’s without compromising their dietary choices. Some pizza chains offer vegan garlic sauces made from plant-based ingredients, so it may be worth exploring those alternatives.

Why Garlic Sauce Isn’t Vegan

When it comes to enjoying a delicious pizza, dipping it in a flavorful sauce can take the experience to a whole new level. One popular choice is Papa John’s Garlic Sauce, known for its rich and creamy texture.

However, if you follow a vegan lifestyle, you may be wondering whether Papa John’s Garlic Sauce is suitable for you. Unfortunately, the answer is no. Let’s take a closer look at the ingredients to understand why.

The Main Culprit: Dairy Products

One of the primary reasons why Papa John’s Garlic Sauce is not vegan is due to the inclusion of dairy products. The sauce contains a combination of butter and buttermilk, both of which are derived from cow’s milk.

While some may argue that the amount used in the sauce is minimal, it still goes against vegan principles as it comes from an animal source.

Hidden Ingredients: Animal-Derived Additives

In addition to dairy products, Papa John’s Garlic Sauce also contains some hidden ingredients that are derived from animals. These additives, such as natural flavors or enzymes, are commonly used in food production and can be derived from animal sources.

While they may not be explicitly listed as animal-derived, they can still make the sauce unsuitable for vegans.

Alternatives for Vegan Dipping Sauce

If you are looking for a vegan alternative to Papa John’s Garlic Sauce, there are plenty of options available. Many grocery stores now offer a variety of plant-based sauces that can be used for dipping pizza or other foods.

You can also try making your own vegan garlic sauce at home using plant-based ingredients such as vegan butter, almond milk, and garlic.

Remember to always check the ingredients list before purchasing any sauce or condiment to ensure it aligns with your dietary preferences. Companies may change their recipes or introduce new products, so it’s important to stay informed.

By taking a closer look at the ingredients, you can make informed choices and enjoy your favorite foods while staying true to your vegan lifestyle.

Vegan Alternatives at Papa John’s

Original Garlic Sauce

Papa John’s Original Garlic Sauce is a popular condiment that many customers enjoy dipping their pizza crusts in. However, if you’re following a vegan diet, you may be wondering if this sauce is suitable for you. Unfortunately, the Original Garlic Sauce at Papa John’s is not vegan-friendly.

It contains dairy in the form of butter flavoring.

But don’t worry! Papa John’s offers a variety of other vegan-friendly sauces that you can enjoy with your pizza.

Barbecue Sauce

If you’re a fan of tangy and smoky flavors, Papa John’s Barbecue Sauce is a great vegan alternative to the Original Garlic Sauce. Made with a blend of spices and tomato-based ingredients, this sauce adds a delicious kick to your pizza.

It’s also worth noting that Papa John’s Barbecue Sauce is gluten-free, making it suitable for those with dietary restrictions.

Buffalo Sauce

For those who crave some heat, Papa John’s Buffalo Sauce is a fantastic vegan option. This sauce combines the perfect balance of spiciness and tanginess, making it a favorite among many pizza lovers. Whether you’re ordering a classic cheese pizza or a veggie-loaded one, Papa John’s Buffalo Sauce will surely elevate your dining experience.

Papa’s Fresh Marinara Sauce

If you prefer a more traditional flavor profile, Papa John’s Papa’s Fresh Marinara Sauce is an excellent choice. Made with vine-ripened tomatoes, garlic, and a blend of Italian spices, this vegan sauce adds a burst of freshness to your pizza.

It’s the perfect complement to any vegetable toppings you choose.

Remember, while Papa John’s offers these vegan-friendly alternatives, it’s always a good idea to double-check the ingredients and inform the staff about your dietary preferences to avoid any cross-contamination.

For more information about Papa John’s menu and ingredients, you can visit their official website:

Hacks to Make Garlic Sauce Vegan

Love the flavor of Papa John’s garlic sauce but following a vegan lifestyle? No worries! There are a few hacks you can try to make your own vegan version of this popular condiment. Let’s explore some creative substitutes and techniques to achieve that delicious garlic taste without compromising your dietary choices.

1. Substitute with Vegan Butter

If you’re a fan of the creamy texture that garlic sauce provides, you can easily replace the regular butter with vegan butter. Many brands offer plant-based alternatives that taste just as great. Simply melt the vegan butter and mix it with minced garlic and a pinch of salt to recreate the signature flavor of Papa John’s garlic sauce.

You’ll be amazed at how similar it tastes!

2. Use Cashew Cream

For those looking for a healthier and nut-based option, cashew cream is an excellent choice. Soak raw cashews overnight and blend them with water until smooth and creamy. Add minced garlic, salt, and a squeeze of lemon juice for a tangy twist.

This cashew cream garlic sauce will not only be vegan-friendly but also add a rich and velvety texture to your favorite dishes.

3. Make Your Own Version

If you enjoy experimenting in the kitchen, why not try making your own vegan garlic sauce from scratch? This way, you have complete control over the ingredients and can customize the flavor to your liking.

A simple recipe could include blending soaked cashews, garlic, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and a touch of nutritional yeast for added depth. Get creative with herbs and spices to make it truly unique.

Remember, these hacks are not limited to Papa John’s garlic sauce. You can use them to create a vegan-friendly garlic sauce for all your dipping, drizzling, and cooking needs. So, get ready to enjoy the amazing flavors without compromising your dietary choices. Bon appétit!

Communicating With Papa John’s on Dietary Needs

When it comes to ordering food, especially for those with specific dietary needs, effective communication is key. Papa John’s, a popular pizza chain, understands the importance of catering to different dietary preferences and restrictions.

Whether you follow a vegan lifestyle or have allergies, here are some ways to effectively communicate your dietary needs to Papa John’s.

Ask About Ingredients

Before placing your order, it’s essential to inquire about the ingredients used in Papa John’s Garlic Sauce. While the primary purpose of this sauce is to enhance the flavor of their pizzas, it’s important to determine if it aligns with your dietary choices.

Papa John’s website provides detailed information about the ingredients in their products, making it easy to find the answers you need. Additionally, you can always reach out to Papa John’s customer service for further clarification.

Request Food Preparation Changes

If you have specific dietary restrictions, such as being vegan, you may need to request certain changes to the way your food is prepared. Papa John’s offers customization options, so don’t hesitate to ask for modifications to meet your needs.

For example, if you are vegan and the Garlic Sauce contains dairy, you can ask for it to be omitted from your order. Papa John’s prides itself on providing quality service, so they will do their best to accommodate your requests.

Inform of Allergies

If you have allergies, it’s crucial to inform Papa John’s about your specific allergens. This will help them take necessary precautions to avoid cross-contamination and ensure your safety. Papa John’s has a comprehensive allergen guide available on their website, which lists the common allergens present in their food items.

By informing the staff about your allergies, you can have peace of mind knowing that they will take the necessary steps to prepare your order safely.

Remember, effective communication is vital when it comes to addressing your dietary needs. By asking about ingredients, requesting food preparation changes, and informing Papa John’s about your allergies, you can ensure a positive and hassle-free dining experience.

Enjoy your delicious Papa John’s pizza while staying true to your dietary choices!


While Papa John’s fan-favorite garlic sauce relies on milk and cheese products, those adhering to a vegan diet have some workarounds. With homemade substitutions, alternative Papa John’s sauces, or custom orders, you can still enjoy tasty pizza and sides.

Just be sure to inform staff of any dietary restrictions.

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