by Kelley Lindberg
Last week, I talked about how sometimes making a favorite family recipe safe for a food-allergic person can be as simple as replacing one or two ingredients with a safe substitute. This week, I’ll offer a few ideas for replacing eggs in recipes.
If someone in your family is allergic to eggs, it can seem like a real challenge to eliminate eggs from your favorite recipes. Fortunately, there are several ways to replace eggs that really work, and in most cases no one will be able to tell you’re using a safe substitute. This is true for recipes that aren’t loaded down with eggs – for example, you wouldn’t want to try to make a quiche with one of these recipes, and brownies and angel food cake don’t work well, either.
But for recipes calling for three eggs or less, here are some of the egg replacements I’ve used. (The following quantities replace one egg. If you need to replace 2 eggs, double the substitute, etc.):
1 tsp baking powder, mixed with 1 Tbsp water or apple juice and 1 Tbsp white vinegar – This mixture works beautifully in most baked goods – cakes, breads, cookies, etc. Breads rise nicely, and you can’t taste the vinegar. This is my favorite home-made substitute to use in baking. It’s great even if you aren’t allergic to eggs and you just run out in the middle of a recipe! It will foam up (think science fair volcano!), so it’s fun for kids to help with.
Ener-G Egg Replacer – This is a great commercially available egg replacer mix made from potato starch and tapioca flour. It comes in a box, usually in the baking aisle. It works great in most baked goods, just like the vinegar mix above. You just mix a spoonful with some warm water, and you’re good to go. The box has lots of great recipes on it, too.
1/2 of a ripe banana, mashed – This works great in pancake mixes and other recipes where you want a banana flavor.
1/4 c. applesauce – Baked goods won’t bake rise as much if you just use applesauce; they might be a little more dense. Try using this in cookie recipes, pancake recipes, etc.
1 Tbsp ground flax seed mixed with 3 Tbsp of warm water – This works well, but some nut-allergic people are also allergic to flax, so use this with caution.
If you’re making a casserole that calls for eggs, you can try using a soy yogurt or soy sour cream instead. (Tofutti makes soy sour cream.) Or try using the Ener-G egg replacer.
Some recipes, such as breads, call for brushing eggs on top of the item as a glaze. Try brushing melted safe margarine or brushing rice milk on the bread instead.
I’ve heard Xanthum gum can be used as a binder, but I’ve never tried it.
If you have any egg-replacement ideas to share, please leave a comment with your great suggestions!
Over the coming weeks, I’ll talk about peanut and tree nut replacements, milk substitutions, and wheat replacements.