French Fries and Hash Browns

CONVENIENCE STORES

Convenience stores will sometimes have french fries and/or hash browns in the hot food section near the registers. In general, all the hot food will be cooked in common fryers (including items that contain animal ingredients). Exercise caution if you have food allergies or intolerances. It is common for these foods to contain palm oil. 

Hash Browns:

7/11:

Hashed potato/ハッシュポテト. Ingredients: Potato (not genetically modified), vegetable oil, salt, dried potato, wheat flour, glucose / spice extract (Product contains wheat and soy)

As of July 2019, 7-11’s customer service stated that animal ingredients are not used for the hashed potato.

The vegetable oil used in the hashed potato consists of rapeseed oil, palm oil, soybean oil and sunflower oil.

In addition, the frying oil used at Seven-Eleven stores is rapeseed oil and sunflower oil, but it also contains an ingredient derived from palm oil.

They also stated to please keep in mind that the product standards and ingredients used could be changed without notice.

Photo from website.

7-11 hashed potato

Family Mart:

• Hashed Potato/ハッシュドポテト. Ingredients: Potato, vegetable oil, salt, dried potato, onion powder, glucose, flavor, sodium pyrophosphate.

As of July 2019, customer service stated that animal ingredients (including meat, fish, dairy products and eggs) are not used.

The oil used in the hashed potatoes themselves is rapeseed oil, palm oil, soybean oil, corn oil, cottonseed oil or sunflower oil (depending on season and cost).

Until late July 2019, the Family Mart website stated that their fried items were fried in palm oil, however, that information seems to have now been removed from the website. However, their customer service confirmed that the oil used to fry the items still contains palm oil. They will not divulge the exact composition of the frying oil, however.

Photo from website. 

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French Fries:

Fried potatoes in the hot foods section of the convenience store, by the register, are a ‘maybe’. According to the allergy information on the 7-11 website theirs look ok, but as always the oil and seasoning used may be an issue.

The Family Mart fried potatoes come with your choice of four seasonings, 明太マヨソース/Alaska pollack mayonnaise sauce, トマトケチャップ/tomato ketchup, サラダエレガンスシーズニング/salad elegance seasoning, or リアルソルトシーズニング/real salt seasoning. Per this allergen chart, the Alaska pollack mayonnaise sauce is not vegan as it contains egg, milk and fish.

The salad elegance seasoning, tomato ketchup and real salt seasoning do not show any animal ingredients on the allergen chart.

The oil used in the fried potatoes themselves is rapeseed oil.

Until late July 2019, the Family Mart website stated that their fried items were fried in palm oil, however, that information seems to have now been removed from the website. However, their customer service confirmed that the oil used to fry the items still contains palm oil. They will not divulge the exact composition of the frying oil, however.

Photo from website.

Family Mart fried potatoes

There are also frozen french fries available in convenience stores that are meant to be microwaved as-is in the package. Some examples are shown below.

Family Mart:

• Mom’s Dining Room French Fries/お母さんの食堂フライドポテト. Ingredients: Potatoes, vegetable fats and oils, salt, glucose/sodium pyrophosphate. (Product contains soy)

20190227_232024    20190227_232029

Lawson:

• Lawson Select French Fries/ローソンセレクトフライドポテト. Ingredients: Potatoes, vegetable oil, dextrin, salt, rice flour, starch, glucose/modified starch, leavening agent, thickener (xanthan gum), carotenoid pigment. 

20190404_145819 (2)    20190404_145815 (2)   

• 7-11 Shoestring French Fries/ 細切りフライドポテト. Ingredients: Potatoes, vegetable oil, glucose/sodium pyrophosphate. (Product contains wheat.)

20190404_150534 (2)    20190404_150528 (2)  

VENDING MACHINES:

The Nichirei 24 Hour Hot Menu Casual Frozen Foods vending machine has one option that may be vegan, the french fries/フライドポテト. It cooks the fries for you while you wait.

Nichirei French Fries/ニチレイ フライドポテト. Ingredients: Potatoes, vegetable oil, dextrin, salt, rice flour, starch, glucose, processed starch, leavening agent, thickener (xanthan gum), coloring (carotenoid pigment), accompanying seasoning salt (salt/seasoning (amino acids etc.)).

20181217_173752    20181217_173824 (2)

20181217_174225    20181217_173723

There are also hash browns and french fries available in stores that are meant to be cooked in other ways, such as on a stovetop. Some of these items are shown below.

COSTCO:

• McCain Tortas de Papas Hash Browns. Ingredients: Potatoes, vegetable oil (contains one or more of the following oils: canola, soybean, cottonseed, sunflower, corn) salt, sodium acid phyrophosphate, dextrose, natural flavor. 

This product is available at Costco Japan. It is marked as certified halal on the back of the package. 

The McCain company did not directly answer if this product is vegan (setting aside the issue of possible-cross contamination) when asked but they did state that the natural flavor is of vegetable origin.

67099740_349847665693952_9023396770415116288_n    67373600_349847752360610_4115914949857902592_nmccain tortas de papas hashbrowns back of package

SUPERMARKETS:

• Swiss Delice Rosti Swiss Style Hash Browns. Ingredients: Potatoes 93%, rapeseed oil, cooking salt, vegetable stock (potato starch, cooking salt, yeast extract, onion extract, antioxidant: ascorbic acid, spices, sunflower oil), antioxidant: ascorbic acid, concentrated lemon juice.  

Ready-to-fry-potatoes, produced in Switzerland.

rosti front    rosti back

• TopValu Natural Cut French Fries/トップバリュ ナチュラルカットフレンチフライポテト. Ingredients: Potatoes (grown in America), vegetable fats and oils, glucose, sodium phyrophosphate.

The package states that this product uses potatoes that are not genetically modified, however, it uses rapeseed oil, and that rapeseed oil may be genetically modified. Manufactured in Chiba Prefecture. 

topvalu natural cut french fries    topvalu natural cut french fries back of package

• TopValu Shoestring Cut French Fries/トップバリュ シューストリングカットフレンチフライドポテト. Ingredients: Potatoes (grown in America), vegetable fats and oils, glucose (includes wheat), sodium phyrophosphate.

Country of origin: Belgium. The potatoes are not genetically modified. 

TopValu Shoestring Cut Potatoes    topvalu shoestring cut potatoes back of package

There is also a dessert in Japan called Daigaku Imo, meaning “Japanese University sweet potatoes.” They are similar to sweet potato fries, but with a sweet coating. The website Just Hungry has a good explanation of the origins of the dish and how it got its name, as well as a recipe for making them at home.

The following product is sold in the frozen foods section of the convenience store 7-11. Thaw until chilled or room temperature, then eat.

Crispy Daigaku Imo/カリッと食感大学いも. Ingredients: Sweet potato (domestically grown), sugar, starch syrup, soybean oil.

daigaku imo front of package 7-11    daigaku imo back of package 7-11