Do you struggle to find egg substitutes that can bind your recipes? You’re not alone.
This article will explain the science behind binding eggs and provide five of the best egg substitutes.
Discover the perfect alternative to eggs in your baking projects today.
What Does Binding an Egg Do?
Using egg in a recipe typically binds the ingredients together, helping them maintain their structure and keep from separating.
The proteins found in eggs are what act as glue to hold the dish together.
While binding an egg does provide structure for baked goods, egg substitutes may be necessary based on dietary needs or personal food preferences.
In baking recipes, composition plays a critical role in the final appearance and texture of the dish.
When an ingredient set includes eggs, it means that the egg proteins are playing a part in development of the gluten strands and starch granules that form for lasting stability inside doughs and batters.
Binding an egg strengthens and influences popular characteristics like fluffiness, crispness or extra moisture content.
Ingredients such as tofu and arrowroot powder can also be used to bind ingredients while lending flavor or promoting desirable textures in finished products such as cakes, muffins or applesauce pancakes.
5 Best Egg Substitutes for Binding (Eggless and Vegan)
Cooking without eggs can be tricky and you may find yourself looking for a substitute that can replicate the same binding properties of an egg in vegan and eggless dishes.
An egg is typically used to bind all sorts of foods such as burgers, veggie patties, quiches, meatloaf and even desserts such as cookies.
Whenever eggs are removed from the recipe, you need a binder or else the food won’t stick together.
Here are some of the best substitutions for binding purposes without relying on eggs:
1 – Applesauce
Applesauce works as an egg substitute because it provides moisture in the form of natural sugars and helps to bind ingredients together, making it a popular choice for vegan and egg-free baking.
It also gives baked goods an extra dose of natural sweetness.
To use as a substitute, simply replace one egg with ¼ cup of unsweetened applesauce.
Applesauce works best in recipes such as brownies and cakes, however it might not provide enough lift for recipes that require a light texture, like muffins.
2 – Ground Flaxseed Meal
Ground flaxseed meal is another great way to replace eggs in baking.
To use it, mix together 1 tablespoon of ground flaxseed meal with 3 tablespoons of water.
After combining the mixture and letting it sit for a few minutes, it will thicken and gel, adding structure to your recipes.
It works best as an egg substitute in cookies and cakes or other baked goods that don’t need to rise during cooking.
As an added bonus, flaxseed meal is high in fiber and omega-3 fatty acids, making it a tasty and healthy alternative to eggs.
3 – Mashed Banana
Consisting of healthy carbohydrates and vitamins, mashed banana is a popular egg substitute when it comes to providing the required texture in a dish.
It is very easy to work with and creates a light sweetness in your recipe.
Simply replace one egg with half of a banana, mashed down to about 1/4 cup for optimal results.
If a recipe calls for multiple eggs, use 1/4 cup of banana for each one.
You may want to add an extra pinch of baking powder or soda as bananas tend to lack the leavening effect that eggs provide.
Bananas work best when baking something like brownies or pancakes – the texture will be slightly different but still quite acceptable.
4 – Silken Tofu
Silken tofu is a popular egg substitute in vegan baking.
It should be used with caution, however, as it is heavier than some other replacements and often produces gummy baked goods.
To use silken tofu in baking, you will need to whip it until it becomes light and creamy before adding it to the recipe.
The amount of silken tofu you will need depends on the rest of the ingredients in your recipe, but a good starting point is one-fourth cup of pureed silken tofu for each egg that needs to be replaced.
It’s also important to remember that as with other dairy-based substitutes, silken tofu can become bitter when cooked at high temperatures, so use caution and watch your baked goods carefully.
5 – Aquafaba
Aquafaba, in short, is the liquid that you get from a can of chickpeas.
It has become a popular egg substitute for use in vegan cooking and baking because of the protein and starch content present within the liquid.
As a binder, it functions best when combined with other ingredients such as xantham gum or psyllium husk powder.
When used in baking, it helps provide structure, moisture and lift to cakes, among other things.
To use aquafaba as an egg substitute for binding purposes, one tablespoon of aquafaba per egg should be added to your recipe.
Be aware that aquafaba can sometimes lend a slightly bean-like flavor to your dish so make sure you take that into consideration before using it.
In conclusion, binding an egg to a recipe is one of the most effective and versatile methods of adding moisture and binding ingredients together.
It can be a great aid in baking and cooking alike, while also providing additional nutrition.
However, there are many times when eggs are not suitable or available — this is when other ingredients can play an important role in achieving the necessary structure and texture.
By familiarizing yourself with these options you’ll be sure to always have an alternative handy for any recipe calling for eggs — ensuring perfect results each time.
Carrie is a food writer and editor with more than 15 years of experience. She has worked for some of the biggest names in the food industry, including Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, and Martha Stewart Living.
As the Editor in Chief of IntroChicago.com, Carrie oversees all of the content on the site. She also manages the team of contributing writers and editors, who help to create delicious recipes, helpful tips, and informative articles that you’ll find on the site.
A native of the Chicago area, Carrie is passionate about all things food. She loves trying new restaurants and experimenting with new recipes in her kitchen. She’s also a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, so she knows a thing or two about food!