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I am a Type A, long-term vegetarian who enjoys some of the vegetarian "meats" on the market today. However, I am concerned about nitrites, and wondering if vegetarian "bologna" and "hot dogs" contain these? Thank you. Lynda
Nitrites have been used for decades to preserve/enhance the color of meat in sausages, bacon and cold cuts. Oscar Meyer doesn't want gray bologna! ;-> In some old brands, you can even find saltpeter, for the same reason. Tofu- and grain-based veggie meat substitutes aren't red to begin with -- so, they generally include a vegetable coloring such as beet juice to get that familiar hot dog look.
Check the ingredient list before buying anything in a package, especially complex creations like vegetarian "meat." You shouldn't find any nitrites, but there may be other unpleasant and/or avoid items lurking in them. Reading the label is the only way to be sure you're getting what you want.
Thanks for writing, Lynda!