Using egg replacers doesn’t have to be confusing! Learn about the different types of vegan egg substitutes and when and how to use them in this guide.
What binds baked goods together? What keeps cakes light and fluffy? The answer? Eggs.
But what if you can’t eat eggs? What’s the best way to replace them in your recipe?
Fortunately there are a lot of options for replacing eggs, so I thought I’d talk using egg replacers today. There are several varieties of egg replacers or substitutes, but they don’t work the same way in each type of recipe. The kind of baked good that you are making will determine what kind of egg substitute you use.
It can be difficult to figure out which egg replacer will work best for your recipe, so let’s take a closer look at each one and learn about their properties!
All of these egg replacers do work with both gluten free flours and regular flours.
What are vegan egg replacers?
Vegan egg replacers are any substance that can be used in place of eggs in a recipe. You can buy different egg replacers, such as powdered versions like Ener-G Egg Replacer or Bob’s Red Mill Egg Replacer.
You can also use various common foods as egg replacers. A good egg substitute will be able to bind baked goods together, as well as produce light and fluffy cakes and muffins.
What can be used instead of eggs?
Baking Powder: A large amount of baking powder (about 1 ½ TABLESPOONS) is a great way to make batter rise. The only time I use this egg replacer is when I make pancakes. The sodium bicarbonate and the cream of tartar in the baking powder react when combined with liquid and rise instantly.
It’s pretty neat to watch actually – when you add the milk to the dry ingredients, the pancake batter puffs up right away. This works best with spelt (or regular all-purpose flour), but I have used it with a gluten free flour blend as well. The results are not as dramatic with gluten free flour – it does rise, but not as high.
Baking Soda and Vinegar (or citrus juice): Another chemical reaction! If you pour baking soda and vinegar (or lemon juice) in a glass, it rises up into a crazy, bubbly mess, right? The same type of reaction occurs when you use this egg replacer in your baking – it rises up and makes cakes, cupcakes, or muffins light and fluffy. I use this combination in place of eggs when I make cake or cupcakes.
Ground Flax Seeds: A flax egg is the “standard” egg replacer that I first learned about when we went egg free. Just combine one tablespoon of ground flax seed plus three tablespoons of water in a small bowl or mug, and after a few minutes the mixture becomes gelatinous, sort of like an egg. Do this for each egg that the recipe requires.
Flax seed egg replacers work best in denser recipes, like cookies or muffins. Any ground flax seeds will do, but golden ground flax seeds will disappear into the batter, making them undetectable to picky eaters.
Chia Seeds: These work the same way as flax seed egg replacers. One tablespoon of chia seeds plus three tablespoons of water combine and form a gelatinous substance that is similar to an egg. This is not my favorite recipe for egg substitute because you can see the chia seeds in the finished product unless you use ground white chia seeds.
Yogurt: Yogurt binds batter together and adds nice moisture to cakes, cupcakes, or muffins. I use non-dairy yogurt (we prefer SO Delicious Cultured Coconut Milk Yogurt), and you need three tablespoons for each egg in the recipe. I use yogurt in my favorite chocolate cupcake recipe.
Applesauce egg substitute: Applesauce or another pureed fruit (like prunes) are a great replacement for eggs that holds everything together, adds moisture, and is low in fat. I use ⅓ of a cup to replace one egg. I find that applesauce works really well in most recipes – try this egg replacer in cookies, cake, or vegan applesauce muffins.
Aquafaba: The liquid from a can of chickpeas is called aquafaba, and it’s become a popular vegan egg replacement in recent years. It can be used for baking, making mayonnaise, and even for making vegan meringue cookies.
What can be used to bind instead of eggs?
Of the egg replacers I listed above, flax eggs, chia eggs, yogurt, and applesauce are all great at binding and holding baked goods together. Baking soda and baking powder do not have binding properties, and only work to make cakes light and fluffy.
What is the best egg replacer for making pancakes?
A good amount of baking powder – about 1 ½ Tablespoons is a great egg replacer for making light and fluffy vegan pancakes. You won’t believe how the baking powder allows these pancakes to puff up and stay very fluffy. Make sure you use baking powder, NOT baking soda.
This post was originally published in April 2015. It has been updated with more tips and tricks and a video.