What Is Vegemite?

You either love or you hate Vegemite. It is one of those condiments that is quite an acquired taste, and if you have never tried it before, it can be a bit intense at first.

What is Vegemite

The concept of a concentrated yeast spread doesn’t sound too appealing on the surface either! But Vegemite has a lot going for it and it definitely deserves to be tried at least once in your lifetime. 

If you have heard of Vegemite but you want to know more about it, then you have come to the right place!

We are going to go over everything you need to know about this curious condiment so you can decide if you want to try it or not! 

What Is Vegemite?

Vegemite is a type of Australian-made black paste that is usually sold in small jars. It is made using ingredients such as salt, vegetable extract, malt extract from barley, and B vitamins such as niacin, thiamine, riboflavin, and folate. 

It is quite similar to its British counterpart Marmite, which is a yeast extract that is also used as a condiment. It first appeared in grocery stores in Australia in 1923 and it was marketed as a pairing with Kraft processed cheese. 

However, Vegemite soon became a popular condiment on its own. It is enjoyed as an ingredient in food, but people also like to pair it with cheese, or simply enjoy it spread on toast! 

Vegemite is known for being quite an acquired taste however, and it’s usually introduced to children earlier in their life so they can get used to it. If you have never tried it as an adult, it can be a bit intense. 

How Is Vegemite Made? 

Vegemite is made from brewer’s yeast- which derives from saccharomyces cerevisiae, a one-celled fungus. Brewer’s yeast is mainly used in, you guessed it, beer! But in recent years, it has become a popular nutritional supplement due to its high mineral and vitamin content. 

Originally, Vegemite was made from excess brewer’s yeast that was left over and unused from World War I. It was broken down into a yeast extract and mixed in with vegetables and some spices. 

It was originally called “Pure Vegetable Extract” before a contest was held to rename it Vegemite. 

What Does Vegemite Taste Like? 

Vegemite is very common and popular in Australia, and people in Britain have Marmite, so they know what it tastes like. But yeast extract as a condiment is not very common in the U.S. so you might be wondering what to expect. 

There is absolutely nothing sweet about Vegemite. It is incredibly savory in flavor and filled with umami. It’s quite salty too, so the flavor can be quite intense to first-timers, but if you like the taste, you will find yourself eating it all the time. 

Because it is so strong in flavor, it is actually better to consume it in moderation. Too much Vegemite in one sitting can be offputting to even those who enjoy it, so even just the smallest amount goes a long way. 

Its salty, somewhat bitter umami taste pairs incredibly well with buttered toast or even cheese. Vegemite compliments ingredients like these really well to create some fantastic dishes. 

What Does Vegemite Smell Like? 

What is Vegemite

The smell of Vegemite is pretty unique, but the flavor is unique too, so this is unsurprising! It smells meaty, but also, it doesn’t… which can be a bit confusing if you have never smelt it before. 

It smells a lot like it tastes, but the smell isn’t as powerful as the taste. However, the smell is a good indication of what to expect when you taste it. It does have a strong aroma and is quite reminiscent of the smell of a meaty stock cube. 

Is Vegemite Vegan?

When you are vegan, it can be a bit harder to find condiments and ingredients that you can eat. However, Vegemite is definitely a great option for you, because it is vegan. 

It is also packed full of complex B vitamins, including Vitamin B12 which is usually only found in animal products, so you can eat Vegemite to get these vitamins into your diet. It doesn’t have any animal products in it, but there might be one ingredient that doesn’t suit your diet. 

Vegemite includes Colour (E150d) as an ingredient, which is a kind of artificial color that lots of vegans tend to stay away from. This is because testing artificial colors on animals is still very prevalent. 

These colorings are often tested on animals such as dogs and mice to make sure that they are fit for human consumption. This makes the eligibility of Vegemite in a vegan or vegetarian diet a bit complicated. 

If you are vegan or vegetarian, use your own judgment and moral standing point on this subject. 

Vegemite Vs. Marmite: What Is The Difference?

It’s no secret that Vegemite and Marmite are practically the same thing, but is there any difference at all? 

Well, for starters, Marmite is a British yeast extract, while Vegemite is Australian. Marmite has been around for longer too- it was created in 1902. Vegemite was actually created due to shortages of Marmite in the country! 

They are both made with brewer’s yeast, and they are both dark, sticky yeast pastes that are used for pretty much the same thing. But vegemite is a lot thicker in consistency, whereas Marmite is more honey-like in its consistency. 

Marmite is also ever so slightly sweeter than Vegemite, but it should still be used just as sparingly because it is super intense in flavor too. 


Vegemite is a popular condiment that comes from Australia. You either love or you hate it, and the taste is quite intense. It’s incredibly savory, salty, and filled with umami. 

If you have never tried Vegemite before though, you should definitely try it at least once. You might surprise yourself and really love it, but even if you don’t, at least you can say you’ve given it a go! 

Mark Williams
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