Dairy Queen customers can now buy vegan Dilly Bars across the U.S. and Canada.
The brand first announced the plant-based bars in April of this year, shortly followed by launches in the U.S. and then Canada. The Non-Dairy Dilly Bars feature coconut-based ice cream with a “crunchy” chocolate-flavored coating. The veganized recipe for the popular ice cream is also gluten-free, and Dairy Queen highlighted this as a key aspect of the product.
The company told online media company Narcity that the bars are “designed to give all Canadians something to satisfy their sweet cravings.” According to Dairy Queen, it’s Non-Dairy Dilly Bars are “a new delicious treat that lives up to the classic.”
Animal rights organization PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) has said that the development of the product followed campaigning efforts from “tens of thousands” of its supporters.
In a statement released at the time, the group said: “PETA has campaigned for Dairy Queen to add vegan options to its menu for years. These cow-free bars are currently available at participating Dairy Queen locations. [H]opefully, [they’re] a sign the chain will be launching more vegan options in the future.”
Dairy Queen’s Misty Slush range — popularized in the 1980s and 1990s as Mr. Misty — is also vegan. It includes flavors such as Lemon-Lime, Blue-Raspberry, Cherry, Grape, and Strawberry-Kiwi. The range returned and became a permanent menu item in 2017.
Vegan Ice Cream and the Cost of Dairy
Around the world, vegan and dairy-free products are more popular than ever. This is in part due to a growing awareness of the environmental cost of animal agriculture, in addition to changing global attitudes to human health and animal products, such as dairy.
In 2017, the Canadian government suggested completely removing dairy from its healthy eating recommendations. Then, in 2019, Health Canada launched its new nutrition guide featuring significantly reduced emphasis on dairy products. Instead, the guide emphasized plant foods.
Dairy Queen is not the only ice cream brand adding additional vegan products to its range. Ben & Jerry’s currently offers 15 distinct dairy-free flavors, while Baskin & Robbins offers three.
Non-Dairy Dilly Bars are now available nationwide in both Canada and the U.S. The ice creams are available as singles as well as packs of six, which can be ordered for takeout, with delivery, or from Dairy Queen’s drive-through.