Alpha Gal Food List: Allergy-Friendly Options for Alpha Gals

Focusing on the positive, this alpha gal food list details what you CAN eat with alpha gal --rather than pointing out the foods that people with alpha-gal syndrome must avoid.

The information provided on this site is based on my personal experience living with alpha-gal syndrome. I consistently cite and link to expert sources, but nothing published on this site should be perceived as medical advice.

Alpha-gal sensitivities vary by person. You should understand your dietary restrictions, making any adjustments needed, and directing any questions to your physician.

When you live with a food allergy, so much time and energy is spent focused on the foods you can’t eat. After all, letting your guard down can result in severe reactions including hives, intense gastrointestinal pain, shortness of breath, or even a trip to the emergency room. And, if you’re like most alpha gals I know, once you’ve experienced one of those allergic reactions, you will do everything in your power to avoid experiencing it again.

That said, it can be disheartening — even depressing  to focus on all of the foods you can no longer enjoy with alpha-gal syndrome. So, this article is the opposite. Here is a long list of foods you CAN enjoy while following an alpha-gal diet.

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In This Article

Important Information About This Alpha Gal Food List

Alpha gals have different sensitivities to foods. While anyone with an alpha-gal IgE test result at or above 0.1 kU/I is typically advised to avoid all mammalian products, people living with alpha-gal syndrome range from those who must simply avoid consuming mammalian meat (like beef, pork, and venison) to those who are so sensitive that they react to touching ground beef when forming it into burgers or smelling the fumes of sizzling bacon when cooking with their families.

This published study reports that “80-90% of patients with AGS do not react to milk or cheese.” To minimize your risk of reaction, I recommend always choosing vegetarian cheese. However, the article also recommends that alpha-gal syndrome patients who continue to show symptoms while avoiding mammalian meat products may want to avoid dairy products. And an informal poll of people with alpha-gal revealed that the majority must or choose to avoid dairy. As a result, I’ve excluded dairy products from this alpha gal food list. But if you are able to enjoy dairy products, be sure to include them in your diet.

Can you consume dairy with alpha-gal syndrome?

Additionally, some alpha gals react to carrageenan, a plant-based food additive that contains the alpha-gal epitope. And others cannot tolerate meat-based ingredients like gelatin, glycerin, and collagen.

Related Article: What is Carrageenan (And Why Should Alpha Gals Avoid It)?

To create this alpha gal food list, I’ve excluded all mammalian meat, dairy products, and meat-based ingredients. If you are a highly sensitive alpha gal, have additional food allergies beyond alpha-gal syndrome, have a histamine intolerance, or any other dietary restrictions, please be sure to avoid any of those items on this list.

It’s also important to note that this list focuses on raw ingredients (like apples, carrots, and peanuts) and common “single item” ingredients used to make other dishes (like olive oil for salad dressing and coconut milk to pour over oatmeal). When purchasing prepackaged products, prepared food items, or other store-bought foods, be sure to carefully read the ingredient label, or consider using the Fig app (more on that in a minute). You want to be sure that the can of refried beans you pick for taco Tuesday doesn’t contain lard and the almond milk you choose for your latte is carrageenan free.

Foods That Trigger Reactions in Alpha Gals

Foods to Avoid with Alpha-Gal Allergy

Okay, I know I just said that this is a list of what you CAN eat. But just to be sure that we’re on the same page about the obvious no-nos for people following an alpha-gal diet — if it’s not plant-based, doesn’t swim, or doesn’t fly, it’s probably off limits.

This includes beef, bison, pork, lamb, mutton, venison, rabbit, and goat. Internal organs (like liver, kidneys, and other organ meats) typically contain very high levels of alpha-gal. While some alpha gals must avoid additional foods, the mammalian meat restriction typically applies to all alpha gals.

Fig Alpha-Gal Diet Set Up Screen

A great way to uncover hidden triggers in your food is with an app like Fig. Select your level of alpha-gal sensitivity by ticking the foods you need to avoid:

    • Mammalian meats
    • Mammalian by-products
    • Gelatin
    • Dairy products
    • Carrageenan and algae
    • All of the above

Then search a list of ingredients or scan the bar code of any grocery store item to quickly identify foods that are alpha-gal friendly (or not so much) using a stop light system of green (can eat), yellow (limit this), and red (avoid).

So what foods CAN you eat with alpha-gal syndrome? Let’s get to it!

A rainbow-colored assortment of fresh fruit.

Fruits and Vegetables

Throughout the year, you’ll typically find about 200 types of fruits and vegetables in the produce section – even though Americans purchase these 40 items most frequently. And the great news is that all fruits and vegetables are safe to eat on an alpha-gal diet.

Related Article: Stuffed Peaches, A Sweet and Savory Treat

Assortment of Vegetables on a Stone Countertop

Sage Advice: When eating away from home, be sure that any fried items – like French fries, tater tots, and onion rings – are cooked in vegetable oil and not lard. It’s also wise to ask about garnishes like bacon bits, which may be used to season everything from mashed potatoes to green beans.

Burlap Bags of Legumes Like Split Peas, Chickpeas, and Black Beans

Beans, Lentils, and Other Legumes

Like fruits and vegetables, all beans, lentils, and other legumes are safe ingredients for alpha gals. Whether you substitute black beans for ground beef on taco night, whip up hummus from a can of chickpeas, or make vegetarian chili with navy beans, you have lots of alpha-gal friendly options in this food category.

Sage Advice: When attending social gatherings or selecting a can of refried beans at the grocery store, be sure to confirm that they do not contain lard.

Related Article: The Best Beans for Protein (Includes 30+ Tasty Recipes)

An assortment of nuts and seeds on a table

Nuts and Seeds

Whether they are raw or roasted, consumed whole or whipped into a creamy butter, nuts and seeds are all alpha gal safe foods.

Sage Advice: Nuts can be pricey, so consider buying them in bulk. To keep them fresh longer, you can store nuts in an airtight container in the freezer for up to one year.

Oatmeal and Oat Flour

Grains

Offering a good source of fiber, grains are edible seeds that are all safe to eat on an alpha-gal diet. Start your day with a big bowl of oatmeal, enjoy this filling quinoa salad for lunch, and make grain bowls for dinner.

Related Article: Power Up with Quinoa, A Complete Protein for Alpha Gals

Breads

Whether it’s shaped into buns or baked in a loaf, the main ingredients in bread are flour, water, yeast, sugar, salt, milk, egg, and oil. While highly sensitive alpha gals may want to look for vegan options that substitute plant-based ingredients for milk and butter, and some alpha gals may need to select breads made with vegan sugar (more on that below), bread is generally alpha-gal friendly.

Sage Advice: Granulated sugar derived from sugarcane is often processed with bone char from bovine sources to give the sweet crystals a sparkling white color. If you are a highly-sensitive alpha gal, opt for vegan sugar options like beet sugar, raw sugar, and coconut sugar. Or substitute sugar for another sweetener, like honey, stevia, or agave.
Assortment of Dried Pasta

Pastas

Although it comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, pasta is flour mixed with water or eggs. Since all three of those ingredients are safe in an alpha-gal diet, pasta is typically an alpha-gal friendly food. Just be sure that filled pasta, like tortellini and ravioli, don’t contain mammalian meat ingredients like ground beef. You’ll also want to ensure there’s no cheese if you are sensitive to dairy. And you’ll also want to be sure your pasta dish isn’t prepared with beef, pork, bacon bits, beef broth, or other alpha-gal allergy triggers.

Sage Advice: The ingredients in packaged goods can vary from country to country, even for globally recognized brands. Case in point: An alpha gal from Australia gave me the heads-up that a well-known spaghetti manufacturer uses an emulsifier of mammalian origin in the pasta made Down Under. Yikes, right? Meanwhile, in the United States, some pasta from the same company is flagged as “yellow” in the FIG app —meaning proceed with caution — due to the vitamin Bs and folic acid added to the dough.

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Olive oil being poured into a glass bowl surrounded by fresh olives.

Cooking Oils

Just like vegetables and nuts are all safe for alpha gals to eat, the plant-based cooking oils derived from these ingredients are also alpha-gal friendly. Alpha gals can also safely cook with animal fats derived from poultry, like duck fat and chicken fat (also known as schmaltz).

When making an alpha-gal friendly substitution, be mindful of the type of oil being replaced and how it’s being used in a recipe. Not all oils work for all recipes, especially in high-heat preparations. If you’re looking to replace lard or beef tallow in your deep fryer, peanut oil and duck fat make good alternatives. Oils with low smoke points, like flax oil and walnut oil, are best used for cold preparations like salad dressing.

If you are a fan of olive oil, like me, use these infused olive oil recipes to incorporate additional flavor into your alpha-gal friendly meals. It’s easy to infuse oil with fresh herbs, garlic, chili peppers, and more!

Alternative milks include almond milk, rice milk, coconut milk, oat milk, and soy milk

Plant-Based Milk Products

If you are an alpha gal who can tolerate traditional dairy products, including milk, cheese, and yogurt, your health care provider will likely recommend that you keep those foods in your diet because they are good sources of calcium and protein. But if you are sensitive to dairy products or continue to have unexplained reactions, it may be wise to replace mammalian dairy products with plant-based alternatives

When choosing alternative dairy products, be sure to read the ingredient list. Because carrageenan is a plant-based ingredient, this additive is allowed in vegan products, where you’ll often see it listed as an emulsifier and thickener. But it carries the alpha-gal epitope and may cause reactions. Many food manufacturers continue to remove carrageenan from products, but at this time, you’ll find carrageenan in the Kirkland brand soy milk sold at Costco as well as the coconut and soy milk used at Starbucks.

Carrageenan in Kirkland Soy Milk at Costco
A woman pouring a scoop of protein powder into a shaker

Plant-Based Protein and Marine Collagen

While many protein powders include whey, and most collagen contains bovine ingredients, alpha gals can still incorporate plant-based protein and marine collagen into their diets. 

My favorite plant-based protein is Orgain’s Organic Protein. The powdered variety is available in several basic flavors (like vanilla, chocolate, and peanut butter) as well as seasonal tastes (like strawberry and pumpkin spice). It’s also available in single-serving shakes, and I use a little of that in lieu of coffee creamer.

For Jennifer Anniston’s secret to youthful good looks without experiencing anaphylactic shock, try marine collagen. It is derived from the skin of fish instead of the skin and bones of cows and pigs, making it an alpha-gal safe option. And, according to this article, marine collagen may be better for you anyway! Who knew?!?

White and Brown Eggs in a Carton.

Eggs

Because they are associated with birds (and not mammals), eggs are part of an alpha-gal diet. The majority of eggs consumed in the US are chicken eggs, but alpha gals can enjoy any type of egg, including duck eggs and quail eggs.

Related Article: Easy Baked Eggs Florentine for Two

As a general rule, caviar and roe (fish eggs) are also okay to consume on an alpha-gal diet. However, it is important to note that flounder roe may contain alpha-gal, so you may want to avoid that specific variety out of an abundance of caution. 

Sage Advice: Enjoy a double-whammy of alpha-gal friendly protein with this chicken egg foo young recipe.

Platter of Assorted Cuts of Chicken

Poultry

Although pork is the most consumed meat globally, chicken is the most popular meat in America. In fact, the average American eats approximately 100 pounds per year. Not only are all cuts of chicken safe for alpha gals, so are all types of poultry and wild birds, including duck, emu, and ostrich.

Just beware that carrageenan is sometimes injected as a brine in pre-cooked poultry to improve tenderness and maintain juiciness, so be careful when selecting deli meat and prepared deli rotisserie chicken. 

Sage Advice: Looking for fast and easy chicken dishes? Here are 20 chicken dinners you can make in less than 30 minutes!

Fish and Seafood

Fish, Shellfish, and Seafood

Alpha gals can also safely enjoy fish, shellfish, mollusks, and other types of seafood.

Sage Advice: To help you make environmentally sustainable decisions when purchasing seafood, download one of the Seafood Watch consumer guides published by the Monterey Bay Aquarium. 

Beer, Wine, and Spirits

I always think of beer as liquid bread and wine as fermented grapes. So I was absolutely stunned to learn that brewers, winemakers, and distillers often use gelatin to clarify their products. What’s even more concerning for people with a mammalian meat allergy is that beer, wine, and spirit producers are not required to list the ingredients that go into their products. That can make it very difficult to know which adult beverages are alpha-gal friendly and which ones might send you to the emergency room.

Thankfully there’s Barnivore. Use the app to identify beer, wine, and liquors that are vegan friendly, and you’ll know you can raise a glass without an allergic reaction. 

Sage Advice: Because Barnivore was created for vegans, who do not consume alpha-gal safe foods like fish, eggs, and honey, I always read why Barnivore has classified a product as “not vegan friendly.” If it contains fish, eggs, and/or honey, it’s still safe for alpha gals to enjoy, just as long as it’s not made with gelatin or another mammalian-based product.

Sage Summary

While it can be hard to say goodbye to foods like burgers, hot dogs, ribs, and potentially cheese, this alpha gal food list details some of the many delicious foods still available when following an alpha-gal diet.

What Are Your Favorite Alpha-Gal Friendly Foods?

Do you follow a vegan, vegetarian, or alpha gal diet? What are your favorite alpha-gal friendly foods? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Thank you for sharing!

37 thoughts on “Alpha Gal Food List: Allergy-Friendly Options for Alpha Gals”

    1. Yes, some alpha gals need to be mindful of bone char. Beet and coconut sugar are never processed with bone char, so they’re a good option for coffee and cooking. And, I’m a big fan of Barnivore to identify vegan-friendly beer, wine, and spirits.

  1. Love your site. Really nice work and it will be helpful.
    Dough conditioner, L-Cystine (from bones, could be chicken), and Casein are all common ingredients in bread. Bread has been a huge hurdle for me, and many Alpha Gals rely on Dave’s White Done Right as their primary bread source.
    This can be a hidden source of reactions for many.
    Thank you.

    1. Hi Wanda! I’m sorry to hear you’re newly diagnosed, but I hope this community can help you! Do you have a good grasp of your sensitivity level? For example, do you just need to avoid mammalian meats? Or, are you also sensitive to other mammalian products (e.g glycerin, gelatin, bone char sugar) and/or dairy? Do you have any other food allergies or sensitivities (e.g. eggs, gluten)? If I were evaluating a recipe or product for myself (or my two daughters with AGS), that’s always where I start.

      Assuming you’re just dealing with alpha-gal, you should be able to make your own basic vinaigrette-style salad dressing with no issue using olive oil, vinegar, mustard, salt, and pepper. If you are sensitive to dairy, be sure to carefully read the ingredient list (or use the FIG app) to check out ranch dressing or anything else that may include dairy. As long as you don’t have to watch the type of sugar you consume, most ketchups should be okay. And mayonnnaise is typically safe as it’s made with eggs, mustard, vinegar and/or lemon juice.

      I hope that helps, and best of luck! <3

      1. Thank you for all the important information. Newly diagnosed with AGS a month ago and struggling to not eat the wrong food. This site is great to be able to learn more and make better choices with food instead of giving up eating.

        1. I’m so sorry you have alpha-gal syndrome, but I’m glad you’re finding this site helpful! Please email me or FB message me if I can help in any way as you get used to the new normal with this unusual and often misdiagnosed food allergy.

  2. Hello thanks for all your helpful information I was diagnosed with this alpha allergies two weeks ago hard to deal with a bit concerned and confused your article really helped thank u !

    1. Hi Anna! I’m so sorry you have alpha-gal, but I’m glad you found the article helpful. Sending you a big hug as you adjust to life with AGS, and please know that there’s a whole community willing to share their experiences and help in any way they can.

  3. I have had this for about three weeks now and Thank you for all the new things to find and eat all I have been eating with this is chicken and boy am I getting tired if chicken I will read you pages every time thanks again

  4. Thank you for all your information. Diagnosed with Alpha Gal two months ago plus have celiac (approximately 15 years ago). Today met with dietitian willing to help me. My allergy doctor very little help & pharmacy a joke. Will continue reading your information on Alpha Gal being safe & healthy.

    1. I’m so sorry you are now adding alpha-gal to a gluten allergy. Unfortunately, many PCPs, allergists, pharmacists, and other healthcare workers don’t know much about the condition. Thankfully, there is a growing community of us always ready to help a fellow alpha-gal out! Hang in there! <3

  5. I’m pretty new to this diet and was wondering if grated Parmesan cheese in pesto could work. I’ve had it a few times on pasta and wanted to make pizza with pesto as the base.

    1. It depends on your sensitivity to dairy. If dairy doesn’t bother you, you’re good to go. If it does, I would recommend a vegan substitute for the Parmesan cheese, whether it’s vegan Parm (I like Violife Parmesan Cheese), nutritional yeast, or another option.

  6. Hi there! Thanks for all this great info. 3 of my children from 9-16 years old have AGS. We have learned that they are sensitive to all the above AND anything that has “natural flavors” in the ingredients. We have been living with this for almost 2 years and have learned to make our own bread, mayo, vanilla, etc. (some vanilla has beaver castor in it which causes a reaction in my kids as well)

    1. Oh, Megan, I’m so sorry AGS is so prevalent in your family, especially because it’s shaping your kiddos’ childhoods. Your children are so lucky to have such a resourceful and dedicated momma bear who will make everything from bread and mayo to vanilla from scratch. Sending a big hug your family’s way!

    1. Hi Brenda!

      I’m very sorry to hear about your husband’s diagnosis! When it comes to powdered chicken bouillon, the key is to read the ingredients list carefully. Based on your husband’s allergy triggers, you’ll want to look for items like gelatin, dairy, and “natural flavors.” If you’re looking for a quick way to check packaged ingredients to determine if they’re alpha-gal friendly, try the FIG app. It can be customized for your husband’s specific needs (e.g. if he’s sensitive to dairy, or not) and gives you a green, yellow, or red light with a simple barcode scan.

      Hope that helps,
      Sage

    1. Oooooh, that’s a good question. I haven’t heard anyone share a concern about coffee, but with any processed food, there’s always a chance of cross-contamination or some non-disclosed ingredient that could be an issue for highly-sensitive alpha gals. And, depending on how you drink your coffee, there could be issues with the sweetener and/or milk/creamer added to it. If you suspect that you may be reacting to black coffee, you may want to switch to an organic whole coffee bean that you grind at home. If you still suspect that coffee is a trigger, eliminate it from your diet to see if that addresses the issue. I hope that helps, and perhaps other alpha gals can comment here based on their experiences!

  7. Hello! I am struggling with finding a vitamin D supplement. I react to all the gums, (plant, algae and bacterial) so I am hesitant with the lichen based ones. I bought a green algae based supplement and took it for a while, not a full reaction, but it left me feeling off. Cod liver oil has so much vitamin A that it isn’t an every day choice. I need to take about 2000iu a day to keep my level normal even being outside. Fair skin requires sunscreen. I do eat free range eggs almost daily.
    Thanks for any suggestion.

    1. It depends. Not all alpha-gals are sensitive to milk. Of the three in our family, only one has to avoid dairy. If you have to avoid dairy, you should probably avoid dry milk in soup mixes. If dairy doesn’t bother you, I’d proceed with caution. Why? Prepackaged mixes may have other hard-to-identify ingredients that may cause issues. I use the FIG app to help me decipher the hard-to-pronounce or potentially risky items like natural flavors (often made with bovine or porcine ingredients).

  8. If you like jello, the snack pack pre made is made with algae. No meat products. I’ve had alpha gal for more than 2 years and instead of getting better it just keeps getting worse. I can not touch it and the fumes have started to cause me hives. If I accidentally consume it within 3 hours I start puking 2-3 x an hour for 24-36
    hours. Amazon makes something called
    Nose filters and they do help some. I have to use vegan lotions, shampoos and medications

  9. I’m so glad I found this when looking up alpha gal. I was diagnosed in April of 2024 after being sick for weeks. I have RMSF from a tick bite and I knew of my red meat allergy but it went to alpha gal after getting multiple tick bites. It’s hard to read all labels some have hidden ingredients that I’m not allowed to eat even if it does say vegan. But the app that you shared the fig app helps me even more. Thank you so much for the most informative read on alpha gal.

  10. Sage, I so appreciate the research. My diagnosis was last year. And I sit here with a rash due to something I ate just a couple of days ago. Not knowing what is in a process food can be harmful. So, I have the list of foods I can eat now. Information is so helpful. Thank you for the work you’re doing.

    1. Hi Mona! I’m go glad it’s helpful, but I’m so sorry you have an active rash. 🙁 I hope you are able to identify the culprit and that you feel better soon! <3

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