One in five Brits plan to eat vegan this Pancake Day

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A survey by Squeaky Bean found that one-fifth of the UK’s population is turning to vegan pancakes on Shrove Tuesday 2021.

Nearly a fifth of Brits (19%) are planning on eating vegan pancakes this Shrove Tuesday, while 57% are happy to try a plant-based pancake.

According to research commissioned by vegan food brand Squeaky Bean ahead of Shrove Tuesday, the poll of 2,000 people found that Gen X, millennials and Gen Z (comprising 18- to 44-year-olds) are more likely to make the switch to vegan pancakes. Almost a third of the 25 to 34 age group said they’ll consume animal-free pancakes this Pancake Day.

London has the highest ratio of vegan pancake eaters, with 35%. That is closely followed by the north east (21%) and north west (20%) of England.

The survey also polled the UK population on its favourite pancake toppings. Lemon juice came top of the list, with 24% respondents choosing it over the rest. Only the north of England chose maple syrup over lemon juice, standing apart from the rest of the country. Nationally, 21% opted for maple syrup and 11% for sugar.

vegan pancakes
Photo: Squeaky Bean

While protein-rich toppings like bacon or its vegan alternatives were out of favour (9%), the survey also revealed some of the most non-traditional ways Brits can choose to top their pancakes. 6% said they’d try baked beans, ketchup (5%) and even kimchi (5%) nationally. In London, in stark contrast, 18% respondents said they would try ketchup on their pancakes on Shrove Tuesday.

One in twenty Britons would consider taking away toppings altogether, choosing an entirely plain pancake. But not all are making their pancakes, vegan or not, from scratch in 2021. When it did come to vegan pancakes, 30% said they weren’t sure what to replace animal protein with and 28% said they didn’t know how to make them. But almost half (49%) of those surveyed agreed that “the mess, difficulty and not always having the ingredients in” can stop them from cooking pancakes, regardless of their diet.

And perhaps unsurprisingly, Brits chose the French-style thin pancake batter (61%) over the thick, fluffy American option.

Sarah Augustine, Squeaky Bean’s co-creator, said: “Shrove Tuesday has traditionally been a time to use up animal products such as milk and eggs. However, with interest growing in plant-based diets, and 582,000 people taking part in Veganuary 2021, many will seek a vegan option on Pancake Day too.

Waitrose & Partners’ vegan buyer Charlotte McCarthy added: “Pancake Day is set to excite consumers this year. With many restaurants continuing to be closed through lockdown, creating events at home that are centred around food can bring back enjoyable dining experiences. Whether you’re keeping it traditional with toppings, or branching out into new and more unusual flavours, convenient and great tasting products can make Shrove Tuesday more delicious than ever.”

Read our interview with Squeaky Bean co-founder Sarah Augustine.

Anay Mridul
Anay Mridul
Anay is journalism graduate from City, University of London, he was a barista for three years, and never shuts up about coffee. He's passionate about coffee, plant-based milk, cooking, eating, veganism, writing about all that, profiling people, and the Oxford Comma. Originally from India, he went vegan in 2020, after attempting (and failing) Veganuary. He believes being environmentally conscious is a basic responsibility, and veganism is the best thing you can do to battle climate change. He gets lost at Whole Foods sometimes.