Eggs are packed with goodness and are suitable for a wide range of dishes. Although they’re a delicious meal on their own, eggs play an important role in the kitchen. They’re extremely useful as a binding beef patties, emulsifying dressings, leavening soufflés and meringues and adding moisture, stability, color, taste, and structure to cakes, biscuits or practically any baked goods.
Finding an egg yolk substitute is crucial if you can’t, or won’t, eat eggs. This article will arm you with some ideas to make your own back-up egg yolk. We’ll also show you how to replace the entire egg in a recipe.
Maintaining an egg free diet
Not everyone can eat eggs and they have their reasons. Egg allergies are very common in children. Although most will eventually outgrow it, some will never shrug off their egg allergy.
Veganism is on the increase in many countries throughout the world. Whether it’s for health reasons, animal welfare, environmental or a range of other reasons, the end result is the same: eggs can’t be eaten.
Egg yolk substitutes
There are plenty of alternatives to egg yolk that you can use for cooking. You just need to get a little creative using some common ingredients.
Watch the quick video to get answers
The quickest and easiest option for replacing egg yolk is to use lecithin. It’s a flavorless binding agent that is made from soybeans. It has the added benefit of giving off no odor.
Take a visit to your local health store or well stocked supermarket and buy yourself a bag.
How to use: Measure 1 Tbsp of lecithin to replace one egg yolk.
2. Flour blend
Yield: the equivalent of 4 egg yolks.
- 4 Tbsp all-purpose flour
- 4 Tbsp chickpea flour
- 1 cup water
- 4 tsp vegetable oil
- Mix flours together in a large bowl then whisk in water until well combined.
- Microwave the mixture on high for 60 seconds, whisk, then heat for a further 60 seconds.
- Whisk in oil, a little at a time until the texture is similar to a beaten egg.
Once you are happy with the consistency of your faux egg yolk, use it in the recipe of add to an airtight container and refrigerate until needed.
Tip: In the original recipe, do the egg yolks add color to the dish? If yes, you can add a few drops of yellow food coloring to create the same visual appearance. Don’t go overboard with the coloring though – your food will look unnatural.
Need to replace the whole egg?
This is a puree of cooked apple. You can either make your own or buy it from the store. However, if you decide to buy the store version, check that it doesn’t have added flavors and spices as this may not suit your recipe. If it’s sweetened, it’s best to reduce the sugar in your recipe to avoid an over-sweet end result.
How to use: Measure ¼ cup applesauce to replace one egg.
2. Mashed banana
This is another readily available ingredient that works well as an egg replacer. It is well suited to baked goods like cakes, biscuits and brownies. The end result will be a denser cake that’s pleasantly moist so long as it isn’t over cooked.
Keep in mind that banana has a strong flavor that can overwhelm or detract from the other flavors easily. If you’re baking for someone that hates banana, this option may be best to avoid.
How to use: Measure ¼ cup mashed banana to replace one egg.
3. Silken tofu
The beauty of tofu is that it has a mild flavor profile so it won’t overpower the dish. Tofu should be used for its binding capabilities. You could blend and add to beef patties to help bind the meat. Or add to a chocolate tart or pound cake – basically any dense cake will work well with tofu.
How to use: Measure ¼ cup tofu to replace one egg.
4. Chia seeds (or flax seeds)
Chia seeds have an interesting, gelatinous texture when added to water. They have a similar consistency to eggs and are a popular option for baking.
First, use a mortar and pestle to grind the chia seeds into a powder. If you want an easier option, buy the powder from a health store. Then add the powder to water and leave for 15 minutes to combine. Mixing isn’t necessary.
Chia seeds are a good option when you’re baking muffins, bread, cookies and pancakes. I find they don’t work as well when you require a light, airy cake with lift. The chia mixture tends to result in a denser final product.
How to use: Measure 1 Tbsp of chia seeds with ¼ cup water to replace one egg.
Doing so may cause baked goods to become heavy and dense. Also, it may result in a nuttier flavor, so it works best in products like pancakes, waffles, muffins, breads and cookies.
5. Store bought egg replacer
Although I have never used this type of egg replacer, I hear mixed reviews about their effectiveness. They can work well in some baked foods, but don’t expect them to be a magic bullet that works in every recipe.
Trial and error will play a big part in your learning, as will lots of research. You’ll soon learn which brands work best and what they can be used for.
How to use: The quantities will differ depending on the brand.
Eggs play a vital part in the kitchen but not everyone can eat them. If you’re looking for an egg yolk substitute then the above options will serve you well.
Personally, I’ve found the flour blend to be a great option if you just want to replace an egg yolk. If you’re looking to replace the whole egg then a chia seed mix will do the job in many baking applications.
Getting it right every time you substitute eggs is a real challenge. They’re a unique ingredient and not easily replicated. Get used to the idea of having an occasional failure in the kitchen and you’ll be fine. Trial and error will help you learn what’s best for your favorite recipes.What do you use to replace eggs in recipes? Share it with us on Facebook or Instagram.
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