Best Vegan Iron Supplements (UK)

This post may contain affiliate links. If you click one, I may earn a commission at no cost to you. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Tired all the time, feeling weak, suffering from headaches? These could be symptoms of an iron deficiency. Recent studies have shown that vegans and vegetarians, especially those who menstruate, have a higher risk of iron deficiency anaemia.

While you can get all of the iron you need from a healthy vegan diet, this requires some work. Many foods that are high in iron, such as red meat, liver and shellfish are not suitable for vegans or vegetarians.

A simple way to make sure that you get enough iron in your diet as a vegan is to take an iron supplement. But, you should know that there is a great variation in the quality of vegan iron supplements on the market.

The iron supplements I tried
The iron supplements I tried include capsules, gummies and liquid

I’ve tried and tested the top vegan iron supplements in the UK, paying close attention to the quality of the ingredients. In this guide, I’ll show you my detailed findings and which are considered to be the best iron supplements for vegans.

The Best Iron Supplements for Vegans

๐Ÿ† Best Overall

Dr. Vegan Gentle Iron + Vitamin C

โœ… 18mg of Iron (ferrous fumarate) โœ… 80mg of Vitamin C

The best iron supplement for vegans is Dr. Vegan Gentle Iron + Vitamin C. Made with ferrous fumarate and added Vitamin C, it’s highly-absorbable while remaining gentle on your stomach.

I found Dr. Vegan iron capsules to be very small and completely tasteless and odourless, so they’re easy to swallow and have no nasty aftertaste. They’re 100% vegan and free from sugar, gluten, soya and artificial colours, flavours and preservatives.

I love that the packaging can be composted. It’s letterbox-friendly too, so you don’t have to worry about being home to accept the delivery. If you wish, you can set up a regular monthly subscription and you’ll get a 15% discount. You’ll also get a free metal pill tin.

Dr vegan pill tin with iron capsules inside

Since taking Dr. Vegan iron capsules I’ve found myself to have more energy and have been able to concentrate better. This is a supplement that I’ll continue to take every day alongside Dr. Vegan multivitamins.

Pros:

  • Small and easy-to-swallow capsules
  • No taste or smell
  • Plastic-free compostable packaging
  • Certified by The Vegan Society
  • Free pill tin
  • Free delivery
  • Low price

Cons:

  • Have to take with food

Get 30% OFF Dr Vegan with discount code CV30

Solgar Gentle Iron

โœ… 20mg of Iron (ferrous bisglycinate)

Each capsule of Solgar Gentle Iron contains 20mg of ferrous bisglycinate – a gentle form of iron that shouldn’t cause any issues with constipation.

These capsules are slightly larger than Dr. Vegan iron capsules, although I still found them to be easy to swallow. They’re bulked with microcrystalline cellulose (rather than brown rice flour in the case of Dr. Vegan). While is is fine for most people, some people may find that it leads to gas, bloating or more frequent bathroom trips.

The bottle is made of recyclable glass and plastic. While this has the advantage of being child-proof, it won’t fit through your letterbox and isn’t quite as eco-friendly as Dr. Vegan’s compostable packaging.

Pros:

  • Easy-to-swallow capsules
  • No taste or smell
  • Child-safe bottle

Cons:

  • Have to take with food
  • Delivery isn’t free
  • Not certified by The Vegan Society

Getย 15% OFF with discount codeย CV15

๐Ÿ†Best Gummy

vegums iron gummies

โœ… 14mg of Iron (ferric diphosphate)

Vegums Iron Gummies are blackberry-flavoured gummies that contain 100% of your recommended daily intake of iron.

While most gummy vitamins I’ve tried tasted great, I wasn’t a fan of the taste of these. Somehow, despite being vegan-friendly, the taste reminded me of blood, as did the dark red colour. They’re suitable for children (under 12s should take one instead of two), but my kids didn’t like them either.

Vegums gummies come in a cool cardboard tube and the inside packet is made of cellulose, so it’s biodegradable. You also get a cool metal tin which is handy to keep them in. Parent should be aware though, that these bear-shaped gummies could be easily mistaken for sweets, and the packaging is easy for kids to open. Too much iron can be very harmful, so you should always keep your supplements on a high shelf.

Pros:

  • Certified by The Vegan Society
  • Free pill tin
  • Suitable for kids aged 3+
  • Plastic-free packaging

Cons:

  • Taste isn’t to everyone’s liking
  • Contains sugar
  • Not child-safe packaging
  • Have to take with food
  • Delivery isn’t free

Get 15% OFF with discount code CV15

Wicked Gummy Co Iron Gummy

โœ… 14mg of Iron (ferrous pyrophosphate)

Wicked Gummy Co iron gummies are vegan-friendly gummies that contain the daily recommended amount of iron. I loved the peach taste of these supplements and they had a great chewy texture.

These supplements come in a plastic bottle, which isn’t great, but at least it’s recyclable. Plus, it’s probably a good idea if you have children, as these could be tempting for youngsters.

Unlike the other iron supplements I tried, there’s no mention that these need to be taken with food, which is more convenient than remembering to take them at mealtimes. These were by far the most expensive though, especially when you consider that you need to take two per day.

Pros:

  • Tastes good
  • Certified by The Vegan Society
  • Child-safe bottle

Cons:

  • Contains sugar
  • Plastic packaging
  • Expensive
  • Delivery isn’t free

Get 15% OFF with discount code CV15

๐Ÿ† Best Overall

Floravital liquid iron

โœ… 19.2mg of Iron (ferrous gluconate) โœ… 16mg of Vitamin C โœ… 1.72 mg of Vitamin B1 โœ… 1.72 mg of Vitamin B2 โœ… 1.72 mg of Vitamin B6 โœ… 1.72 mg of Vitamin B12

Floravital is a liquid formula that contains not only iron but also vitamin C and a combination of B vitamins that aim to reduce tiredness and fatigue. It also contains fruit juices and herbal extracts such as spinach, fennel and camomile.

I wouldn’t say that this liquid tastes bad, but it’s not great. I had it followed by a swig of orange juice to take the taste away and it was absolutely fine. What I did find tricky was remembering to take it 30 minutes before breakfast and again 30 minutes before dinner.

Unlike many iron supplements, this one says on the bottle that it’s suitable for use during pregnancy and breastfeeding. The bottle only contains enough to last for 12 days though, and it’ll probably take longer than that to feel the effects.

Pros:

  • Contains added vitamins
  • Suitable for children aged 3+

Cons:

  • Must be taken 30 minutes before meals
  • Must be kept in the fridge
  • Only 12 doses in the bottle
  • Doesn’t taste good
  • Delivery isn’t free

Get 15% OFF with discount code CV15

My Recommendation

After having tried the most popular brands of iron supplements for vegans, the one that I would recommend is Dr. Vegan Gentle Iron & Vitamin C. These small, easy-to-swallow capsules have enough iron to help you boost your reserves as well as vitamin C to make sure that it’s fully absorbed. They’re great value for money with free delivery and I love the free metal pill tin that you get too.

If you’re still not sure whether iron supplements are you, read on for some more information about how you can increase your iron levels as a vegan…

How Do Vegans Treat Iron Deficiency?

You can prevent and treat an iron deficiency by eating foods that are rich in iron and foods that are rich in vitamin C as this helps the absorption of iron. Treating an iron deficiency can take a long time, so the best way to raise your iron levels quickly is to take an iron supplement each day.

vegan sources of iron

Vegan Sources of Iron:

Here are some iron-rich foods that vegans can eat:

  • Iron-fortified breakfast cereals
  • Beans and pulses – white beans, kidney beans, lentils, chickpeas, green peas
  • Dark chocolate
  • Spinach
  • Tofu
  • Tomatoes
  • Nuts
  • Dried fruit – Raisins, prunes, apricots
  • Green leafy vegetables – Watercress, scale, brocolli

Fortified cereal is one of the best vegan sources of iron, as each serving contains up to 100% of the iron you need each day. Check out this list of vegan breakfast cereals to see which ones are suitable for vegans.

Another delicious source of iron is dark chocolate. But you should know that not all dark chocolate is vegan-friendly as this can contain milk. Check out this list of vegan dark chocolate to know which brands to look out for.

Are Iron Supplements Vegan?

Iron comes in two forms – heme and non-heme. Heme iron is only found in animal flesh, whereas non-heme iron is found in plant foods.

The main types of iron supplements are:

  • Ferrous sulphate
  • Ferrous fumarate
  • Ferrous gluconate
  • Sodium feredetate
  • Ferric pyrophosphate
  • Ferric diphosphate
  • Ferrous biglycinate
  • Heme iron polypeptide

Not all iron supplements are suitable for vegans. Even those that contain non-heme iron may have extra animal-derived ingredients added, such as gelatin, stearic acid or cows’ milk.

How Much Iron Do I Need?

The NHS recommends the following amounts of iron:

  • Men – 8.7mg a day for
  • Women who menstruate – 14.8mg a day
  • Women who do not menstruate – 8.7mg a day

Taking over 20mg of iron per day can give you side effects like stomach pain and constipation, so it’s best to stick to 15 – 20mg of iron per day.

Heme iron (from animal flesh) is absorbed more easily than non-heme iron. Fibre and calcium can both inhibit the absorption of non-heme iron. So even if you’re consuming enough iron, your body may not be absorbing enough of it.

To ensure that vegan iron supplements are absorbed efficiently, it’s recommended to take vitamin C at the same time, and avoid calcium-rich foods and tea at the same time.

Vegan Iron FAQs

Is ferrous fumarate iron vegan?

Ferrous fumarate is generally suitable for vegans but vegans and vegetarians should be aware that some ferrous fumarate capsules contain gelatin which is made from pigs or cows.

Is ferrous sulfate vegan?

Ferrous sulfate iron tablets are generally suitable for vegans. However, capsules and gummies often contain gelatin from pigs or cows, so you should always check the ingredients for this.

Is ferrous gluconate vegan?

Ferrous gluconate is usually synthetically made without animal ingredients. However, ferrous gluconate liquid may have other ingredients added, such as stearic acid, which may come from animals.

Is sodium feredetate vegan?

Sodium federdetate (also known as Sytron or Sodifer) is an oral liquid iron supplement that’s suitable for vegans and vegetarians.

Is ferric pyrophosphate vegan?

Ferric pyrophospate is suitable for vegans, but it may be mixed with non-vegan ingredients when made into iron supplements, so always check the label to be sure.

Is ferric diphosphate vegan?

Ferric diphosphate is generally suitable for vegans, but iron supplements sometimes contain extra animal-derived ingredients, so always check the label.

Is ferrous biglycinate vegan?

Iron biglycinate (also known as ferrous biglycinate) is generally suitable for vegans. However, it’s also important to look out for any extra added ingredients that may be derived from animals.

Is heme iron polypeptide vegan

Hemer iron polypeptide is derived from the flesh and blood of animals and so it is not suitable for vegans or vegetarians.

Further Reading:

Related Posts:


Before you go!

I'd love to help you to...

1. Get a freebie - Try vegan meal replacement shakes for free

2. Feel great - Try my favourite vegan multivitamin

3. Be a smarter vegan - Join my email list for vegan news and tips