Egg Substitutes

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Eggs. Photo © Erin Huffstetler

Trying to avoid eggs for dietary reasons or just need a quick stand in until you can get to the store for another carton? Since eggs perform different functions in different recipes, it's important to pick the right egg substitute for the job. Here's a look at all the options:

If eggs are being used as a leavening agent (to make baked goods rise) ...
Mix together two teaspoons baking powder, one Tablespoon oil and two Tablespoons water per egg
Mix together one Tablespoon vinegar (white or apple cider) and one teaspoon baking soda per egg
Mix together one Tablespoon unflavored gelatin (or agar agar) and three Tablespoons warm water per egg
Use 1/4 cup yogurt per egg
If eggs are being used as a binder (to hold meatloaf or burgers together, to hold the breading on foods that are too be fried, or to firm up cookies or pancakes) ...
Mix together one heaping Tablespoon of soy flour and 2 Tablespoons water per egg
Use one heaping Tablespoon of flax seed and 3 Tablespoons cold water per egg in sweet recipes. Wait for the mixture to gel before you use it. It'll add a slightly nutty flavor to the finished recipe.
If eggs are being used to add moisture (in cakes, muffins, etc.)...
Use 1/4 cup of pureed fruit (applesauce, banana, pumpkin) per egg for sweet recipes. This will alter the flavor of the recipe a bit, so pick the fruit that best suits the recipe. Since fruit is denser than egg, consider adding an extra 1/2 teaspoon baking soda to compensate. Also, know that you may need to increase the bake time a bit.
Use 1/4 cup of mashed potatoes per egg for savory recipes
Use 1/4 cup yogurt in sweet or savory recipes
If eggs are being used for their texture (in quiche, custard, mayo or egg salad) ...
Use 1/4 cup soft or silken tofu. Mash or whip it to the desired consistency.

 

Other Things to Consider

  • Sometimes eggs serve more than one function in a recipe, acting as both a leavening agent and a source of moisture, for example. If that's true for the recipe that you're working on, try to pick a substitute that can pull double duty
  • Egg substitutes work best in recipes calling for three or fewer eggs