In a recent post, after sharing why I’ve moved away from consuming eggs, I briefly explained that eggs play a role in a diet and that these roles can easily be fulfilled more safely by plant-based foods. I also promised to share some plant-based egg replacers. There might be some compromise, but for the most part I’ve found them to be tasty; and the end results have been excellent.
I’ve researched the ideas listed below using various resources that include several vegan recipe books, plant-based cooking demonstrations, sources on the net as well as personal experience, of course. I’ve just jumped right in and tried different alternatives and found what works best in my favorite recipes.
It’s important to keep in mind the texture and taste of the final product that you’re aiming for as well as what purpose the egg serves in the recipe: is it a binder? is it adding moisture? is it adding texture?
So how do you find out what ingredient goes where and when? Here’s how:
For moisture and/or richness: If there is little other liquid in the recipe, then egg is used for additional moisture. In some cases, it might be for adding richness along with providing moisture.
For leavening: If there are no other leavening agents; such as, baking powder or baking soda, but the recipe has acidic ingredients; such as, buttermilk, vinegar, citrus juice like lemon or orange, then egg in this particular recipe is used as a leavening agent.
As a Binder: There is enough liquid and also leavening agent but no “glue” such as, flour, bread crumbs, nuts etc., then the egg is being used as a binder. Remember, some recipes use flour and breadcrumbs along with eggs to provide the food like vegetarian loaves, burgers, and patties more texture. In this case, eggs are giving the final product more moisture along with a binding property. So, be sure to add in more liquid to provide moisture, as needed.
So, here are some excellent egg replacements that I have used:
Ground flax seed: Mix 1 tablespoon per 3 tablespoons of water for one egg. Let stand 3 to 5 minutes. It creates the moisture and binding.
Ground white chia seeds: Whisk 1 tablespoon with 3 tablespoons water. It also creates the moisture and binding. I find it has a very neutral taste so won’t overpower the flavor of your end result.
Pureed whole fruit like bananas or apples: About ¼ cup replaces an egg. Applesauce, canned pumpkin works well in baked goods like muffins. In some of my recipes if I’ve experienced them coming out a bit heavy the next time I make the recipe I’ll add a little baking powder. Using whole fruit instead of white sugar adds additional moisture and is a great way to move away from sugar as well.
Silken Tofu: Whipped or beaten, generally ¼ cup replaces one egg. Be sure end result is nice and creamy.
Soy yogurt: ¼ cup
Plain Agar Powder (for one egg white): Mix 1 tablespoon with 1 tablespoon water. Whip together chill, and whip again.
As a binding agent for savory, vegetarian loafs, etc. try mashed potatoes or tomato paste. Using rolled oats mixed with flaxseed and water also works well, as well as bread crumbs, cornmeal or whole wheat flour. I use a combination in this recipe.
Some recipes just don’t need eggs. Most cookies, even pancakes can be made without eggs.
Do you like egg salad? Use firm tofu, well drained. It takes on the color of the prepared yellow mustard and flavors of the pickle relish, chopped onions, and celery. I like to add a smidgen of curry! YUM.
I hope you will give some of these ideas a try. I have found that they work very well in my recipes so I really don’t miss eggs. Even when it comes to mayonnaise, there are many egg-free mayo options now available.
Now, that I’ve shared some egg replacers, I do realize that many people will start to worry that if they stop eating eggs, they won’t get enough protein in their diet. No one should worry about this if they choose to move away from eggs, or any animal product, for that matter. Moving away from eggs, meat, poultry, fish or dairy may seem unfamiliar but there are wonderful plant-based sources of protein. In one of my future articles, I’ll focus on some ideas of how to experiment and try new protein plant-based foods.
In the meantime, it’s truly in your health’s interest to try some of these egg replacers. You will be so glad you did. Please let me know what you find works best for you in your favorite recipes. For even more important egg information just click here: eggs