Today the office in which I work provided pizza lunch for us, and the person ordering was extra thoughtful and ordered some additional special pizza for the few vegans who work in this office.

Upon inspecting the vegan pizza, it was visibly different from the other pizzas, but did not resemble other vegan pizzas that I've seen. There was still some kind of cheese on it, but a lot less than the regular cheese pizza. And similarly when I tasted it, it did not resemble any vegan pizza that I've had.

Is there some method or some test I can use to determine whether the pizza was put together with vegan ingredients or traditional cheese from cows milk? Is there a gadget or chemical process?

I don't have a milk allergy, nor am I lactose intolerant (as far as I know), so I can't rely on my physical reaction to the food to determine its origin.

  • Good luck with that. At more than one office meeting pizza was ordered and supposedly included a vegan option but it turned out not to be. I think between the initial order and it getting passed on through to the kitchen it was just interpreted as meaning vegetable topping. It's also best in restaurants to not just ask if something is vegan as most people don't know what that means. You usually have to ask if there's meat, egg or dairy in the dish. Jan 30, 2020 at 17:49

3 Answers 3


It is hard to see any practical answer to this. I don't suppose that you have access to a sophisticated chemistry laboratory. I don't know how to perform this specific test but I have seen a description of how to detect fake orange juice. This relied on isotope analysis; that's not amateur science.

I think that the only practical answer is trust. Do you trust the person that ordered it? Do you trust the restaurant? Are you willing to risk the occasional mistake? I am a bit less strict in a situation like this than when I am in full control. If someone has remembered and made a good effort then I don't want to reward them with rejection. However, where to draw the line been good and token effort is a difficult choice.

Few of us can avoid associating with meat eaters so we need to make some compromises. Personally, I don't enjoy watching people eat meat so even if I am sure that my meal is acceptable, I don't enjoy these events very much.


A trick I do is to ask the restaurant if it has milk or eggs in it because "I am super allergic and have already been to the hospital", they will check it with more attention since they don't want a customer in hospital. Otherwise just eat at home, otherwise you can never really know what is in it.


Call and ask the restaurant from which the pizza was ordered what it's ingredients are.

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